Apple held an event presenting the iPhone 4S on Oct. 4. It was the first Apple event in which Tim Cook presented as Apple’s new CEO since Aug. 24.
Many have expressed disappointment, believing that the company would present the iPhone 5 at the Oct. 4 event.
“The [trends] on the new Apple seem to think the [iPhone] 4S will be a failure, even if it is faster, has a better interface and platform for running apps,” said associate professor of technocultural studies Kriss Ravetto-Biagioli in an e-mail. “The issue seems to be design, why does it still look like the previous model?”
Apple’s website boasts that the iPhone 4S is even more powerful than its predecessor.
“The dual-core A5 chip delivers more power. The 8 megapixel camera with all-new optics also shoots 1080p HD video. And with Siri, iPhone 4S does what you ask,” the website states.
Other main features are the iOS 5 (Apple’s device operating system), an enhanced retina display and iCloud.
According to Apple, the A5 CPU has twofold processing power, allowing for better gaming, quicker browsing and faster app launching. Apple said that because of the power efficiency of the chip, there is a longer battery life.
The iPhone 4S’s camera is a step up from the camera features previous iPhones had. Apple said the camera boasts 8 megapixels, 60 percent more pixels than the iPhone 4’s camera. The company said that it has a refined LED flash and a backside illumination sensor that gives brighter color and more detail.
In addition, the volume-up key can now be used to take a photo and photos can be directly edited on the phone.
iPhone 4S’s Siri is the newest main attraction. Siri is currently a beta version; users of the phone will be able to test it for its efficacy.
“Siri on iPhone 4S lets you use your voice to send messages, schedule meetings, place phone calls and more,” Apple said. “Siri understands what you say, knows what you mean and even talks back.”
Siri is the replacement for the previous voice control function that was introduced with the iPhone 3GS in 2009, becoming the new voice recognition tool that can also convert words into text.
OS 5 will also be made available for download for the iPhone 3GS or later iPhone models on Oct. 12. The new iOS offers over 200 new features, including Notification Center, iMessage and Reminders. Notification Center puts all notifications into one location as opposed to the respective app locations, iMessage gives users unlimited texting among fellow iOS 5 users and Reminders is a virtual to-do list.
iCloud is another new main feature of the iPhone 4S. According to Apple, iCloud will store music, photos, documents, apps and wirelessly transfer them to different Apple devices. People can back up and restore their devices without needing to use a Mac or PC.
“Apple has often taken technologies that already existed in research labs, ranging from window-based GUIs [graphic user interfaces] to multi-touch, and though excellent design and execution, made them ubiquitous,” said Assistant Professor for the Department of Computer Science and Program in Technocultural Studies Michael Neff, in an e-mail.
The iPhone 4S, available in black or white, starts from $199 for a 16 GB and will be carried by AT&T, Verizon Wireless and Sprint.
CLAIRE TAN can be reached at email@example.com.