Apple iPhone 5 launched

The sixth iPhone the world has ever seen has just been revealed
Darren Allan

September 13, 2012
iPhone 5

Apple has finally unveiled its latest iPhone to the world.

And it comes pretty much as expected, with many of the rumours proving to be spot on.

Not all of them, though. It was thought that NFC technology would be on board the iPhone 5, and Apple has once again given this a miss (maybe it’s one for the iPhone 6).

But enough about what isn’t in the device, what is? The major rumour, that the display would be upped to a 4 inch affair – and kept the same width, so the phone becomes taller – proved to be spot on.

The resolution has also been increased to 1136 x 640, making for a 16:9 display which is better for watching video footage and movies. It has maintained the retina-quality level of the iPhone 4S with an identical 326 pixels per inch, or in layman’s terms, it’s damn sharp, same as the 4S. Oh and it’s colourful, too, with the colour saturation apparently being boosted by almost 50 per cent.

There are more pixels to push, though, so obviously the processor has been juiced up, and there’s an A6 SoC on board the smartphone, which is twice as fast as the iPhone 4S was in terms of both processing and graphics performance.

And, as was predicted by everyone, the smartphone has LTE support for super-fast mobile surfing. And it has been confirmed by EE, Everything Everywhere’s new 4G brand, that the iPhone 5 will be supported on its network – a big selling point for the firm.

The iPhone 5’s camera is an 8 megapixel iSight affair with a sapphire crystal lens cover which has the “ability to provide crystal clear images”, according to Apple. It has a panoramic mode which allows for the capture of images of up to 28 megapixels by slowly (and carefully) sweeping the camera across the scene.

Video features improved stabilisation, funny that as it was a big selling point of the Nokia Lumia 920 at its recent unveiling, and there’s also an HD front-facing FaceTime camera (capable of 720p video).

A smaller “Lightning” connector is on board, as rumoured, and there’s an adapter being made available. New earbuds are also bundled with the iPhone 5, the first time they’ve been overhauled in a long time.

Another prediction, that the iPhone 5 would be more svelte, has indeed come true, and the rumours that the device had been slimmed down to 7.6mm were spot on. That’s one thin handset, and thinner than all its major rivals such as the Samsung Galaxy S III and HTC One X.

It’s also 20 per cent lighter than the old iPhone, and is fashioned – as the rumour mongers had said – with an aluminium back, and a glass frontage.

A bigger battery is also in there, with Apple claiming a longer battery life than the iPhone 4S.

And of course, the iPhone 5 comes with iOS 6 on board, although that has no stunning new features, but some interesting bits such as full Facebook integration into the OS, and Apple’s own Maps system, complete with 3D flyovers of major cities (how many UK cities, though, we don’t know).

Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing, commented: “iPhone 5 is the most beautiful consumer device that we’ve ever created. We’ve packed an amazing amount of innovation and advanced technology into a thin and light, jewel-like device with a stunning 4-inch Retina display, blazing fast A6 chip, ultrafast wireless, even longer battery life; and we think customers are going to love it.”

As for the pricing and release date – the price hasn’t been confirmed for the UK yet. However, in the US, it’s the same scheme as it normally is – the price remains the same, with the iPhone 5 taking over the iPhone 4S’ price points, and the 4S (and iPhone 4) being shuffled down to a cheaper level.

The release date for the UK has been confirmed as September 21, the same as the US; a week on Friday, with pre-orders starting this Friday.

Are you excited to get your mitts on Apple’s latest creation? Excited enough to queue up, even? Dust your camping chair and thermos flask off now…


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