iPhone 5 is a 'winner,' says Consumer Reports

Despite the Apple Maps snafu, the iPhone 5 is the best iPhone Apple has made, says the consumer publication.

Apple

The iPhone 5 is among the best smartphones on the market, at least in the eyes of Consumer Reports.

Putting the new phone through the paces, CR was impressed with the larger 4-inch display, the thinner and lighter body, 4G LTE access, and "a host of innovative features." Those factors all pushed the iPhone 5 high in the ratings, beating the iPhone 4S as well as a host of Android phones.

Consumer Reports found improvements in Siri, as well as the camera. With the exception of the 41-megapixel camera on the Nokia 808 , the iPhone 5's camera tested as the best that CR has seen on a smartphone, offering "beautifully sharp and vibrant photos."

Performance in low-light conditions and shutter speed matched those of the better smartphone cameras but weren't noticeably better than those on the iPhone 4S.

And what of the Maps app? CR's testing found some pros along with the cons .

The app offered clear directions, both on-screen and through voice. The 3D flyover feature was "intriguing," though it displayed the same "melting" buildings that other people have discovered. And overall, the Maps app lacked the details, data, and customization offered by Google Maps.

Apple is striving to fix the many problems uncovered in the Maps App, so CR expects the app to "improve in time."

Apple recently apologized for its Maps fiasco and has tried to steer iOS 6 users toward other navigation apps for now.

Google Maps is no longer available as a dedicated iOS app, though iPhone users can tap into Google's mobile Web app, which recently added Street View to its repertoire.

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About the author

Journalist, software trainer, and Web developer Lance Whitney writes columns and reviews for CNET, Computer Shopper, Microsoft TechNet, and other technology sites. His first book, "Windows 8 Five Minutes at a Time," was published by Wiley & Sons in November 2012.

 

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