Apple unveiled the highly anticipated iPhone 5 Wednesday at a news event in San Francisco. The Post's Hayley Tsukayama reports:
In fact, the rumor mill got just about everything right, from the iPhone’s new 4-inch screen to its A6 processor to its completely new look.
The new iPhone will cost the same as the iPhone 4S: $199 for the 16 GB version, $299 for the 32 GB version and $399 for the 64GB version. As happened last year, the two previous version of the iPhone got a price cut. The iPhone 4 is now free, on contract, while the iPhone 4S is now $199.
The biggest change to the iPhone is its most dramatic redesign since its introduction in 2007. Taking a step away from the fragile glass casing of the iPhone 4 and 4S, the phone now has a metal backplate flanked by glass panels that house a smaller — but better — camera sensor.
The design, according to a video on Apple’s Web site, is the product of hours and hours of industrial design and engineering. Jony Ive, Apple’s lead hardware designer, said that the company was taking the redesign of its iconic product very seriously and wanted to make sure that they got it absolutely right.
Apple also announced design changes for old accessories. Hayley Tsukayama live-blogged:
Apple said that it will finally change the dock connector it introduced with the original iPod, meaning that pretty much all of those accessories you have for your iDevices now need to be replaced or modified if you get the iPhone 5.
The new connector is called Lightning — a riff, one presumes, off of Thunderbolt — and it is reversible.
As an iDevice user who is always fumbling to properly attach the old connector, I have to say that’s great news. The new connector is supposed to be 80 percent smaller than the old 30-pin.
Apple also announced that it will be selling new earphones for iOS devices, which will go on sale today and are redesigned with a funnel shape, as rumored. According to Mashable, Apple spent three years designing the entirely new headphones. They will ship with the new iPod Touch and the iPhone 5.
But is the new iPhone really innovative? The Post’s Emi Kolawole asks readers:
The Apple rumor mill will continue to churn, but not about the iPhone 5,which Apple revealed today. The announcement slakes, if only for a moment, the thirst among Apple fans for a new product.
But is it innovative?
Meanwhile, investors aren’t sure what this means for the world’s most valuable company. Tsukayama continues:
After all, Apple shareholders didn’t react much to the news, and the stock kept on ticking. While the company’s stock went up and down as the company’s announcement dragged on, it ended up within a percent of its opening price once the Foo Fighters had finished playing to the crowd in San Francisco.
There are reasons that this iPhone may not do as well for Apple. The Post’s Hayley Tsukayama looks at what could go wrong:
It’s hard to argue with Apple’s success. It’s the most valuable company in the world; its profits are through the roof; and it has a devoted following that borders — let’s be honest — on fanatical. (For proof, see the meme-driven “Things” Apple Fanatics Say, parts one andtwo. Then tally up how many of those phrases you’ve heard ... or said.)
The company is expected to once again impress the industry and its fans by announcing a new version of the iPhone today, which will likely rake in sales when it hits the market. But let’s play devil’s advocate for a second. There might be some flies in Apple’s ointment.
First, the U.S. smartphone market may be too mature for Apple’s newest phone to have the kind of major success on the scale of previous iPhones, says Stephen Baker of the NPD Group, which measures the U.S. market. Baker wrote Tuesday that the new iPhone may not sell as well as in the past now matter what its updated hardware is like.