Touted by Apple Inc. as the “thinnest, lightest, fastest iPhone ever”, iPhone 5 debuted at a super-hyped media event in San Francisco. This latest iteration of the iPhone series features a 4-inch screen display and an A6 processor with double the speed of its predecessor iPhone 4S. The 4G long-term evolution (LTE)) cellular connectivity enables faster downloads. Its 8-megapixel 1080p, front-facing HD camera takes panoramic shots.
Customers accustomed to using their mobile phones for virtually everything will again find iPhone 5’s bells and whistles handy for multi-tasking. It has the capability for a better organised email, convenient photo stream sharing, and FaceTime video calls. Frequent travelers will be drawn to the Passbook folder that stores e-tickets, boarding passes and coupons. The new Maps app shows off loads of points of interest for navigation.
With iPhone 5’s launch, the Apple vs. Android battle rages on among mobile phones and their respective loyal followers. In terms of features and functionality, how does iPhone 5 stack up against other smartphones? Despite iPhone 5’s sleek design and hefty market share, several high-end Android devices are steps ahead of the techno-game.
Actually, the HTC Thunderbolt was among the first to have 4G LTE. Samsung Galaxy S3 and HTC One X already operate on LTE networks. The A6 processor’s quad-core performance isn’t a novelty either. For example, Samsung Android phones are already equipped with quad-core chipsets.
As for panoramic photos, Motorola Droid X offered the panorama feature a couple of years earlier. The Maps app features and then some have been available since 2009 with Google for Android users, starting with the original Motorola Droid.
Some smartphones already use a wireless technology called near-field communication (NFC) that allows mobile payments with a simple tap on an NFC-enabled reader. In fairness, the mobile payment infrastructure needs further tweaking at this stage, so Apple is probably waiting for a more opportune time to add the NFC chip.
While iPhone 5’s 4-inch display adds a fifth row of icons on the home screen, other Android phones have already beaten it in screen size and aspect ratio. Samsung Galaxy S3 is a tad larger with a 4.8-inch screen, and Galaxy Note boasts a 5.3-inch display. The 1136 x 640 screen resolution of iPhone 5 is not quite up to par with true high-definition standards. To name a few, Samsung Galaxy S3, HTC One X and Motorola Droid RAZR HD have the edge with larger displays and a 1280 x 720 resolution.
As it turns out from a technical perspective, iPhone 5 doesn’t stand taller, but maybe shoulder-to-shoulder with peers in the mobile phone industry. The mobile mania surrounding which brand or model outperforms and outsells the rest can only benefit consumers in the endless quest for ever-smarter phones.