Pros Nice looking design, looks to have decent battery life, light weight and decent speed on wifi and LTE,
Cons If you are used to Android or Win, this phone feels and looks scrawny. The screen, while taller, is a minimal improvement.
Then there are some "HUH?" software changes led by Apple Maps.
Summary A good update to the iphone 4 and marginal for the 4S. If you are locked into the iOS world, a good phone and looks solid.Update after using this for a week:
If you are an Android or Win user, save your money.
Here is my overall take after a full day:
iPhone 5 Review
AT&T 16gb Black
Comparing phones: iPhone 4 and Galaxy Nexus (GSM)
First impression was "Nice!". The black looked good.
The I picked it up and went "Huh?". Note I use a Galaxy Nexus as my main device. The i5 reminded me of the old fashioned cabdy bar phones - like the Moto KRZR and other. It was nice but felt scrawny. Compared to my legacy i4, it was a good update in looks, compared to a Nexus..... let's see.
Next was the display. It was taller. Taller. Other than that not much else was a change. about a third of an ich taller than my i4. Side by side to the Nexus, is was ...... small.
Now for the real stuff; how well would this work and what was new.
Setup went well. Activated the phone and set it up as a copy of my i4 via iTunes. Only real issue was it exploded all my folders so I had to spend a few recreating on the i5.
Settings was a small change except for email. Now GMail is my main non-work mail system and I quickly found with iOS6 you can no longer sync your GMail contacts to your idevice. Why?!? So I went looking for an answer on Google and quickly found a way to use Exchange to sync my contacts. As a note, as this will is a work phone and once the work software is installed, there are strict iCloud restrictions.
Okay, I'm set ready to use...
Apparent speed - faster than the i4, slightly faster than my Nexus on Jelly Bean. I did some general tech news browsing, GNews, CNN, WSJ, and and the i5 and Nexus were very close. Did note a strange behavior on iOS6, there were times it would load the cached page instead of refreshing for new info. Have to dive into the settings... Overall it is a nice improvement over my i4 and on par with the Nexus.
Internet - wifi - I ran several quick checks, speed tests and the Nexus, i5 and my iPad are all pretty mych the same. I have a home 20mbps setup.
Internet - LTE - nice speed. Faster than my 4G Nexus and leaves my i4 in the dust. Expected. I can see folks quickly rocketing through their data plan. Wish it had a limit setting like Jelly Bean. Have to be keeping an eye on it. If anyone knows of a good one .....
Apps - most seem to run with minimal issues. The expected stuff you get with an OS update. The biggest notable so far has been maps. Won't go their except to say they really really suck. I'm in West Los Angeles and they are lacking. Lacking traffic, accuracy, public and all the other items I have come to expect. Sad.
Couple other points:
Battery - first impression it is on par with the Nexus. My i4 has had the battery issue and never really fixed.
Call quality - good. I didn't see any problems with a few test calls and sound wise it is on par with the Nexus and better than the i4. On speaker it is better than both. The other party could hear me with no issue.
Connector - small and not really sturdy. Hope the aftermarket better quality ones come soon. The cable looks as fragile as the old version.
Ergonomic - not that great. The 3GS and GNexus are the best ergo phones I have owned. The i5, well better than the i4, is far from good. It makes me want to wrap it in a case. Sigh. I prefer mine naked.
The top and bottom cap are glass. So while the aluminum back is nice (it does show skin oil marks rather well) it is not the great improvement I was hoping for. Time will tell if the glass is sturdy or ...
Overall after a full day, no real surprises in the hardware department. It is a nice improvement to my i4 but nothing really earthshaking. As my work phone it will be getting use and travel, but at this point I don't see the i5 becoming my go to device.
Updated on Sep 27, 2012
- battery last all day will moderate use. Use on par with my GNexus.
- memory management looks to be much better in iOS 6 (more of an OS +)
- the speaker phone is very poor and tinny sounding. Callers on the other end could hear me clearly.
- earbuds look nice but don't stay in your ear well at all. If you enter a moderately noisy area (subway) the music becomes difficult to hear clearly.
Updated on Oct 11, 2012After a few weeks now, my overall opinion of the i5 had shifted little from that initial finding. If you are married to iOS or really have to have an iPhone, this is a good phone for you. My single "watch out" for this device is maps. The app itself works well, the map data is significantly lacking. If you plan on maps, look elswhere. While there are a number of map apps and Google Maps via Safari, any built in service (Siri) uses Apple Maps.
No matter what phone you choose, enjoy it. Most have a limit on returns of 14 days in the US.
Updated on Oct 17, 2012A follow up to my original regarding the camera.
Pro: takes great pictures though you need to have it on HDR to get the really good photos.
Cons: HDR takes away the rapid point and shoot option. This device definitely suffers from the "purple haze" issue.
I am not a photographer. Just your ordinary take shots and hope they come out well kind of person. I took a number of photos on a trip recently with both my gNexus and iPhone 5. The photos from th i5 were significantly better as expected. However, a number of the photos (about 15% or so) suffered from a purple haze clouding the shot. This did not appear on any of the pics from the gNexus.
Result: the iPhone 5 camera is definitely sub par.
Pros *4G LTE
*Much improved display
*Excellent front and rear camera
*Super, super fast web surfing
*Great looking design, so happy to be away from the glass back.
Cons *The obvious incompatibility with prior accessories.
*Maps - The Maps app is almost comical. But I feel bad for people that depend on it. It needs to be fixed ASAP.
Summary I recently tried the Samsung Galaxy S3, and while yes, it's an amazing phone, it crashed on me constantly. I mean, constantly. I returned it after a week. I don't think Samsung has the QC that Apple does with their hardware. True, it had a gorgeous display, but it's way too big. I'm a one handed texter, and the iPhone is still perfect for that. The display is gorgeous, the internet loads at breakneck speed. Also, it is a downright beautiful looking phone. Coming from a 4 to a 5, I'm very happy and very impressed. If I owned a 4S, I'd probably sit this one out. I also don't know that I would pay the exorbitant amount it costs if you're not eligible for a full upgrade, but for $200, I can picture myself extremely happy for the next 2 years.
Pros Fast, great screen quality, iOS/OSX integration, good camera, panorama mode is cool. Decent battery life.
Cons Would have been 4 stars had it not been for Apple Maps. Because navigation is a primary reason I have a smartphone at all, this couldn't go unpunished. The jury is still out on Siri.
Summary Recently retired my old HTC Droid Incredible, it died an unspeakable death the day before the iPhone5 hit the stores. Went to the local Verizon office the next day, and noticed they had the new phone for sale. Being in the middle of nowhere (Sioux Falls) sometimes has its advantages - I had my iPhone 5 at 8:15 a.m. the day it went on sale.
Some background - I liked my Droid. It was old, slow, it's battery was shot. But I liked the way it integrated with Gmail (duh!), and had many apps I liked (including Google Sky - one of the best free apps in existence). I knew I would miss the "back" button if I went to an iPhone. But I've had macs for years, and would have had an Apple before now if AT&T had any semblance of coverage in the frozen plains of eastern South Dakota. But going from a Droid to an iPhone was a tough choice.
Took the phone home - set up was straightforward. Unlike other reviews here, I thought using exchange to set up my gmail account was pretty simple. Itunes integration was pretty easy, so between my Imac, two mac books my wife's 4S, my 4G iPod Touch and Airplay - I have my music everywhere. And I disagree with those trashing the earpods - they're great for FREE earbuds (although I wouldn't pay money for them).
NB - be careful with the new facebook integration. Somehow, when I set up my contacts, all my FB friends ended up in my contacts list. It was a PITA to get them all out. I'm sure it was user error, but be careful.
Really liked the camera. The Panorama camera mode is very cool - I now often find myself standing with my phone and spinning in circles everywhere. The camera overall performs well enough that I'm considering using it as my primary point-and-shoot (retiring my old Panny LX1). Low light performance was good, HDR mode did as well as one might expect from a camera phone.
The screen is very clear and sharp, played videos well - both from iTunes and the web. i'm not a gamer, can't comment on game graphics. Reading was easy (NYtimes apps, others). And the size of the screen was more than adequate.
For the record - I'm not a fan of phones pretending to be tablets. I find the Galaxy SIII to be comically large, and assume many men stuff them tightly into their pants to impart a false impression of virility. The iPhone 5 is as big as I need a phone to be.
Maps - this has been covered everywhere, so I don't need to rehash it all here. Apple maps are okay in Sioux Falls, which doesn't throw the application any navigational curve balls. But in larger cities - particularly those having extensive public transportation systems with multiple choices for transport (metro, bus, train, etc.) - Google maps are so far ahead I can't see Apple catching up for years. (To date, tested in DC and NYC). For business I still have another Droid - there's a good chance my iPhone won't stray far from home until this is fixed.
If I were Google, I would make an iOS 6 Google Map app and charge for it - they'd make a lot of money. But I'm me, and hope they do it for free.
Siri - amusing, but I can't say I find it useful very often. Maybe I'm shy around virtual females and become inarticulate ("who am I" becomes "who am pie" and then the fun begins). For some reason, she insists that I'm the owner of a local Lebanese restaurant and keeps asking about my mother.
Pros (I will be adding detailed information in summary)
Cons (I will be adding detailed information in summary)
Summary Yes, I'm sure we can all agree this phone would of been a wow factor if it was released last year. But let's face it, I am glad they took their extra time to make a much more beautiful and sturdier phone.
> Beautiful Camera front and back
> Fantastic video recording particularly back cam
> Super fast connection improved heaps
> Super fast, slightly faster and less laggy than my friends brand new Galaxy S3 when we compared
> Very sturdy design, one of the sturdier smart phones out there
> More reliable compared to other phones on the market
> Beautiful appealing design
> Fantastic sound quality from speakers and louder (definitely improved from previous models)
> Responsive phone
> Longer screen makes viewing pictures and videos more exciting
> Siri is definitely far more responsive and can understand my family with heavy accents
> Love the new earphones, got such bass to them and crystal clear sound. They don't fall out when I go for runs.
> That god awful Maps app (please fix it)
> Different port (doesn't bother me but if you payed hundreds for accessories you would be frustrated)
> Battery life doesn't seem to be improved in any noticeable way
> Dwarfed against competing smart phone's screen size
> The lack of excitement and new features
> Passbook needs its own app store
Overall the iphone 5 is an amazing phone that I am glad I purchased. It is visually beautiful to look at, so much more quicker and that LTE internet connection is so quick I can't even speak more highly of it. In my last "con" comment, I mentioned it had a lack of excitement. What I meant by this was, it is simply just an iphone. There are no amazing new fun features I could explore and be like "Wow, I didn't know I had this!" Compared to let's say the Galaxy S3 where my friend is still discovering things. But that doesn't make the iphone any less better in my opinion. The Iphone 5 is sturdy, reliable and beautiful.
When comparing it to the S3, the Iphone 5 is like a partner you know would stay home and be supportive and wouldn't run out on the kids while the S3 is that exciting, crazy and fun partner that is likely to walk out on you and break your heart. Okay I exaggerated. Iphone 5 is great and so is the S3 it's up to you to chose between sturdy and reliable or fun and exciting but less responsive and more problematic.
Pros 4" screen is the perfect smart-phone size. Very thin and very light. Elegant design. Fast LTE with Verizon. Great battery life and something I haven't read much about, battery recharge is FAST. I assume that new connector wasn't added just for fun.
Cons Apple maps are competent but not ready for prime time. They should kept Google maps for the iPhone 5 and spent the next year perfecting Apple maps. The screen allows for a new row of icons but they are small. I'd prefer less icons that are larger.
Summary Having the phone for 3 days I am very happy with it. It's functional art piece. Ergonomically, it feels perfect in the palm; very light and thin. Coming off Android I am happy to be back in the Apple ecosystem. It is easy to use and navigate around. Snappy performance opening apps and web pages. The battery life is proving to be a huge step over my last phone. 4G and wi-fi can stay on all the time now! That's a huge bonus versus turning them on/off on my old EVO as needed to save battery. Fully charging the phone from about a 5% charge to full takes less than an hour. I am liking this new connector already. In a cellular landscape where many phones are beginning to resemble LCD TV's, I am happy Apple kept the screen to 4". If I wanted a tablet, I'd use my iPad. Iphone 5 goes almost unnoticeable in the pocket. I'll update this review after a month or so. Hopefully Apple will have made advances with maps by then but it will probably take much longer than that to get close to Google.One more thing to add, the voice recognition on this phone is way ahead of what I was accustomed to. There are not many corrections to make when e-mailing or texting using voice. Big points for that. I am also very impressed so far with Siri's quick and helpful responses
Updated on Sep 23, 2012