• Ryan M. Pierson

What Could Apple Improve About the iPhone 4S?

There seems to be a bandwagon mentality across social networks when it comes to bashing a new gadget. If the general consensus is that the gadget is a great step, people clamor to sing its praise across various discussion threads, typically repeating the same basic statement over and over with slightly different wording. When it comes to the iPhone 4S, the general statement I see repeated constantly throughout the community is that it’s a disappointment. So what about the iPhone 4S is a disappointment, exactly?

Let’s first have a look at the rumors that didn’t come to pass in the 4S. The rumor mills were filled with every imaginable upgrade from a 3D screen to a built-in projector. Personally, I doubt anyone short of a select few 3D gaming enthusiasts really wanted to see their beloved smart phone turned in to the Nintendo 3DS. While projectors are certainly becoming smaller and more compact, the idea that one would be small enough to fit inside the iPhone’s already compact frame is a bit far fetched, even with a laser-based projection.

The iPhone got a significant processor update. Going from the A4 to a dual core A5 processor is no easy task. Just a few years ago, dual core processors in gaming-class desktop machines weren’t very common. Now, they’re small and cool enough to fit inside an iPhone without burning your hand. I’d say that’s a pretty significant upgrade.

1080p video is also a pretty large step up from the 720p video the iPhone shot before. While that may not sound like a big difference, folks who know video editing and processing can recognize just how difficult 1080p video really is to encode on the fly. Even the 1080p dedicated Kodak PlaySport has its quality issues in comparison to the iPhone 4S, and it’s bigger.

A fifth lens, image stabilization, larger base storage capacity, and an industry first two-antenna system are also pretty significant steps up from the iPhone 4. This leads me to believe that all the comments and speculation over how terrible the announcement was have to be based on something entirely different. I’m guessing the disappointment and resentment is simply the result of a bandwagon of negativity that surfaces so often when something new is introduced in the world of technology.

Let’s not forget Siri, one of the most significant changes to the overall iPhone experience. Siri is a big step forward in several key areas. For example, it makes the iPhone one of the first smartphones to reach the mainstream market that gives significant scheduling and reference capabilities to the blind. In addition, the AI itself is extremely robust and capable of doing more than virtually any voice recognition software previously available to mobile platforms is capable of.

So, I bring the question to you: What could Apple have improved about the iPhone 4S? Why is this phone being considered such a disappointment?


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