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Apple iPhone 5 first reviews recap

Posted: , by Victor H.

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Apple iPhone 5 first reviews recap
The iPhone 5 is coming in just a couple of days but the reviews are already up and ready to help you make up your mind. And most reviewers agree that Apple has managed to brilliantly update its iPhone lineup once again catering to virtually all users’ needs: a bigger screen and 4G LTE connectivity yet with a thinner and lighter new iPhone, which lasts just as long as before.

The new iPhone 5 is coming with a brand new design with an aluminum instead of glass back, but the biggest shocker for everyone who got to spend time with it is just how light the device feels. Yet Apple’s premium choice of materials makes it feel exceptionally sturdy. Kudos to Jony Ive and his team once again.

The new 4-inch screen is taller but not wider. For most reviewers that was a great new addition, but - fair enough - some mention that reading, browsing and watching movies on larger displays is a much more enjoyable experience. The downside of those bigger screens? They are not that easy to operate with one hand and might look just a bit too big when held in public.

Apple iPhone 5 first reviews recap
There are two annoyances most reviewers share about the iPhone 5. The first one is the letterboxed apps. What are those? With the increased screen size, Apple is still supporting older third-party applications but it’s not automatically stretching them to fit the screen, but instead puts two black bars on top and bottom, a letterbox, much like iPhone apps appear on the iPad. After time, some of the nearly 700,000 apps on the App Store will be updated to fit the 4-inch screen, but right now this is definitely an inconvenience.

Another big annoyance for most in the tech press was the change of connectors. Apple’s new 8-pin Lightning connector is smaller and more comfortable to use (it’s reversible, plugs on both sides), but it requires a $30 adaptor to work with your existing accessories. Have a couple of them? Get ready to spend almost as much on adaptors as you did on the phone. Still, it’s a painful but necessary progress.

Software-wise, you get iOS 6 which is a small, gradual improvement of iOS that will be remembered for growing more distanced from Google apps like YouTube and Maps, both of which are absent now. Apple is instead bringing its own Maps solution, but it’s not as good and might be one of the few disappointments users have with their new iPhone.

But those could easily be shelved as the iPhone 5 easily gets most reviewers whole-hearted recommendation as one of the best phones available on the market right now.

So here’s what the reviews say, every one with an own unique perspective.

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posted on 19 Sep 2012, 03:58 21

1. hateftotti (Posts: 146; Member since: 03 May 2011)


So you can see everyone just said that it is the best iphone yet.It is far from the best phone on the market;))

posted on 19 Sep 2012, 06:58 3

23. Peter98 (Posts: 119; Member since: 01 Aug 2012)


Oops. I liked it wrongly. I should dislike...

posted on 19 Sep 2012, 07:10 6

29. bbblader (Posts: 583; Member since: 24 Oct 2011)


''and better than just about any other smartphone.''
that my friend is the review from cbc news

posted on 19 Sep 2012, 07:35 3

34. JC557 (Posts: 1164; Member since: 07 Dec 2011)


Someone stated that it's the nearly perfected smartphone... my only question is for whom.

First the iPhone 4/S weight was praised as being solid, now it's made lighter and, again, is praised. Then there was all that commotion about 3.5" being the perfect screen size for one handed operation. Now it's 4" with unchanged bezel thickness but still lauded.

The sad thing is The Verge's Motorola Droid Razr M review. They panned the "boring" design and you got the fanboys saying that at $100 the old 4S is a better buy.

Ahh, choice is such a bad thing.

posted on 19 Sep 2012, 08:12 1

38. -box- (Posts: 3878; Member since: 04 Jan 2012)


Exactly. Exception #3, 10 and 11, who seem drunk on apple juice.

posted on 19 Sep 2012, 19:35

46. E.N. (Posts: 2362; Member since: 25 Jan 2009)


Most if not all of them were fairly positive.

posted on 19 Sep 2012, 04:09 17

2. kartik4u98 (Posts: 511; Member since: 19 May 2012)


AnywaYs I'm neVeR gOnNa buy It!
mY nexus is way better then this(leaving camera)

posted on 19 Sep 2012, 07:10 1

28. kartik4u98 (Posts: 511; Member since: 19 May 2012)


why 7 bullwhip thumbs down 4 me???

posted on 19 Sep 2012, 04:10 20

3. xenonn1 (Posts: 19; Member since: 13 Apr 2012)


Where is the brand new design?did i miss something?i smell some iphone fan here

posted on 19 Sep 2012, 04:20 15

5. Veigald (Posts: 240; Member since: 13 Jan 2012)


Indeed. "Brand new design" in bold should not be a PhoneArena statement. Anyone with a pair of eyes can see this is on the opposite end of brand new.

posted on 19 Sep 2012, 05:48 4

11. caseball2051 (Posts: 31; Member since: 09 Feb 2012)


anyone with eyes can see that the phone has been redesigned.

did they say it was drastic?......no.

posted on 19 Sep 2012, 05:53 9

13. chaoticrazor (Posts: 2347; Member since: 28 Aug 2012)


so redesigned means stretched ?

come off it the nokia 808 was a redesign from the n8

the samsung s3 was a redesign from the s2

this isnt a redesign , its a bigger version of the same phone

posted on 19 Sep 2012, 08:13 1

39. dragonscourgex (Posts: 307; Member since: 16 Jan 2012)


I would have to disagree with Victor H. and caseball2051. This is not a redesign of a product. The phone looks exactly like the 4s. Just cause they made it longer does not mean it's a "redesign". When Apple went from the 3gs to 4, that was a redesign. Sorry Apple fans, this is not a redesign. Shame on you media type to try and fool the Apple fan base.

posted on 19 Sep 2012, 09:45

44. Stoli89 (Posts: 333; Member since: 28 Jun 2010)


I do not think the writer was trying to fool the iFans, just placate them.

posted on 19 Sep 2012, 04:14 9

4. Droid_X_Doug (Posts: 5954; Member since: 22 Dec 2010)


From the 4S onward, you will see only incremental upgrades each year from Apple. Until they re-design the UI.

posted on 19 Sep 2012, 04:51 2

7. Droid_X_Doug (Posts: 5954; Member since: 22 Dec 2010)


PA should put up an article asking what readers think will be in the next edition of the iPhone.

My contribution for the iP5S:
-Incremental improvement in the Maps app.
-Improved camera function (better low light processing, multiple modes like with Android), maybe larger image sensor/more Mpixel count.
-Faster GPU, possibly dedicated video RAM for better gaming experience.
-Use of biometrics (finger print scan to unlock?)

posted on 19 Sep 2012, 05:49

12. caseball2051 (Posts: 31; Member since: 09 Feb 2012)


thats all weve seen since the iphone was introduced to the market.

small incremental upgrades. Its almost like they release their models in beta stage (iphone 3 & 4) then release an upgraded better version (3GS, 4S).

posted on 19 Sep 2012, 04:32 3

6. Wiki_jaan (Posts: 703; Member since: 24 Jun 2012)


yupe '' the biggest thing happen to iphone since iphone''

4 inch big display and forth icon row ......................lol

posted on 19 Sep 2012, 05:05 6

8. henrickrw (Posts: 407; Member since: 16 Sep 2011)


I'm waiting for the 10/10 score or at least a 9.5..... LOL

posted on 19 Sep 2012, 05:19 7

10. Droid_X_Doug (Posts: 5954; Member since: 22 Dec 2010)


Why would the iP5 merit a 10/10? The UI is stale at best. Maps is a work-in-process. The screen is dinky. My prediction is no higher than 9/10.

posted on 19 Sep 2012, 06:34 5

15. XPERIA-KNIGHT (unregistered)


man give this thing an 8.5 at best..... lets be real.......without the beauty of the iphone ...........it wouldnt even be worth mentioning...

posted on 19 Sep 2012, 06:48 6

19. Droid_X_Doug (Posts: 5954; Member since: 22 Dec 2010)


The difference between 8.5 and 9.0 is really subjective on the part of the reviewer. iP4S got an 8.5, iP4 got a 9.0 from PA if memory serves. From what I have read to date, the iP5 is an improvement over the 4S, therefore my prediction of a 9.0/10 score. Dinky screen keeps it at 9.0/10, however.

posted on 19 Sep 2012, 07:12 1

30. XPERIA-KNIGHT (unregistered)


i can agree with that bro.....but lets hope PA agrees with what is "right" and not go with what everyone else feels it should be because its the....... "iphone 5"....... you know what im saying?

posted on 19 Sep 2012, 06:55 1

22. Peter27 (Posts: 233; Member since: 13 Jul 2012)


Xperia - my apology
Thumbed you down by mistake.

posted on 19 Sep 2012, 09:48

45. Stoli89 (Posts: 333; Member since: 28 Jun 2010)


Agreed. The screen resoultion no longer leads, even with a relatively smaller 4 in. screen. The lack of NFC, or wireless charging, or ground breaking camera make it rather bland. All in all, it's only thin and light. Not bad traits...but not groundbreaking. The new iPhone makes the iPhone 4S a very good deal for those captured within the iPhone ecosystem.

posted on 19 Sep 2012, 05:09 3

9. sasch (Posts: 14; Member since: 19 Sep 2012)


I loved the iPhone always did. But I loved every other good phone out there as well, Galaxy sII, , IPhone 4s, Galaxy Nexus, Moto Razr, Samsung galaxy s3.
I will get the IPhone 5 Friday. I hear all this moaning and complaining about the IPhone yet there are 2-5 million phones sold before the phone is actually o the Marked yes it in not the most innovative Phone in the World, if you go buy the screen size, yet they made a phone what has been sold 30 million times in the USA alone even lighter thinner and quicker, so you do the math.

I think it is a cool phone for now, but I am sure I get bored of it rather sooner than later, just hope that they make the next generation Samsung Galaxy, better build and better in the Texting Department, as this is really frustrating.

posted on 19 Sep 2012, 06:40 3

16. XPERIA-KNIGHT (unregistered)


man GROW UP! those sales numbers only mean that YOU and everybody else out there are indeed, either hooked into the ecosystem and spent to much money to go else where.....or you are just BLIND and the media is pretty influencing you choices! because no matter what flaws this damn phone has, you and every other ifan was going to buy this phone BEFORE it was ever assembled...........thats why the predictions are always true about it being "record" breaking.......why? because YOU HAVE NOOOO CHOICE but to buy the newest iphone available.........it really is a shame that you dont see it that way... the author of the this even says how much of an inconvience this phoen is (money wise) with the adapters and all........but you STILL DONT CARE because as long as its apple........it must be right

posted on 19 Sep 2012, 06:53 2

21. XPERIA-KNIGHT (unregistered)


Call of duty has record breaking sales each year for FPS games.......but does that mean its better than Battlefield 3? not unless you're a "blind" fanboy it isnt or just someone who can be "honest" with them selves and not afraid to tell everyone else IT IS INDEED BETTER!

posted on 19 Sep 2012, 07:39 1

35. kshell1 (Posts: 1143; Member since: 05 Oct 2011)


I still battlefield bad company 2 and battlefield 3, guess where my modern warfare 3 is? collecting dust.

posted on 19 Sep 2012, 08:48

41. rigz1381 (Posts: 4; Member since: 11 Aug 2012)


Choice is an excellent thing. There isn't anything WRONG with the other phones, reviewers just agree the iPhone is the best to use...for the masses. The masses are BLIND, they just want something that is fairly reliable.

People who say the iPhone "isn't complex enough", doesn't have "originality" are making Apple's point. They produce a phone that can be used easily enough with some of the best specs for a 10 year old and a 70 year old. KISS - Keep It Simple Stupid!

posted on 19 Sep 2012, 06:02 2

14. amiaq (Posts: 499; Member since: 30 Jun 2012)


Seriously, what can you say about the new iPhone? May be bit about the hardware, then for the software just read the review from 2009. That's it done!!

posted on 19 Sep 2012, 06:42 3

17. infinitemethod (Posts: 139; Member since: 04 Sep 2012)


I want someone on one of these tech sites to acknowledge apples pricing plan. I want apples fans to realize how silly it is to charge an extra $100 for 16GB or $200 for 48GB. Why do you think Apple doesn't allow its customers to change their battery? It would open the door to the possibility of expandable storage! Hell would freeze over before Apple did that. All about the profit margin.

Majority of all Apple fans think Android phones are cheap with their plastic design. At least Android phones are designed for function and usability, not greed. There is no question that I phones look nice, but I would never sacrifice functionality, usability, an incredible user experience (Jelly Bean) for that stale, outdated, extra row of icon start menu/app launcher OS.

posted on 19 Sep 2012, 07:08 1

27. Peter27 (Posts: 233; Member since: 13 Jul 2012)


I agree with you, unfortunately we live in the world where people buy expensive things which they don't even need.
For them it does not matter if the phone can't do half of the things, most important it looks good. At the end they have it to show off and to make their friends jealous.they don't have friends, iPad is their new friend. People lost the real sense of the real values.

posted on 19 Sep 2012, 06:45

18. Evil_SaNz (Posts: 258; Member since: 20 Oct 2011)


The best iphone yet. Magic. 10/10. Buy it.

posted on 19 Sep 2012, 07:07 2

26. Savage (unregistered)


You are right. Best iPhone? Yes. Best smartphone? Nope!

posted on 19 Sep 2012, 08:57 1

42. rigz1381 (Posts: 4; Member since: 11 Aug 2012)


Opinion...same as this article believes the iPhone is the best phone. Its all based on what you want in a phone. Most people want simplicity. Nothing wrong with other phones that may be more complex with maybe better options/specs.

posted on 19 Sep 2012, 06:52 1

20. sasch (Posts: 14; Member since: 19 Sep 2012)


haha,, ohhh you haters make me laugh.

I don’t care what you say and i am not buying I because of the apple logo, if this device would have been made by bloody Nokia I would still buy it.
Like every other company if I see a phone I like and it make sense I want to have it. If you want o can lawn you some money so you can get one too!

posted on 19 Sep 2012, 07:01 2

24. chaoticrazor (Posts: 2347; Member since: 28 Aug 2012)


was thinking maybe this guys talking sense right up till ''If you want o can lawn you some money so you can get one too!''

then you just became another deluded ifan thinking your product cost more then everyone else's and the only reason they hate it is because they cant afford. so i bet you really just buy it to be like everyone else with the 'look at me i have an iphone'

posted on 19 Sep 2012, 07:14

31. Peter27 (Posts: 233; Member since: 13 Jul 2012)


Look at me... I have....well not yet....but soon. Win8. Man,i can't wait.

posted on 19 Sep 2012, 07:05 2

25. Savage (unregistered)


Reviewers praising features like panorama? I guess Apple ran out of companies to buy, apps to dumb-down, features to make em exclusive to the newest iPhone. Atleast Siri was the reason to buy 4S.

posted on 19 Sep 2012, 07:20 1

32. Kronic (banned) (Posts: 321; Member since: 11 Sep 2012)


It's simply awesome! Accept it. The experts have said it and have also said it feels more premium than any of those android smartphones.

posted on 19 Sep 2012, 08:03 1

36. chaoticrazor (Posts: 2347; Member since: 28 Aug 2012)


experts? these so called experts have also said things like the iphone 4s camera is just as good as the 808's when in reality its not even close. so you have to take the words of these ''experts'' with a pinch of salt........besides most get blinded by there own preference and that effects there reviews etc.

why dont you iphone fanatics ever give proper reasons other then 'its awesome' and 'premium'' you use that word too much its lost meaning

posted on 19 Sep 2012, 07:28

33. slaggyb (Posts: 192; Member since: 19 Oct 2011)


Iphonearena should get theirs to and review...lmao I careless about what others reviewed... unlike other phones you guys get them and review them atleast one week before it official launches but when it comes to the iphone it be on the day of launch..

posted on 19 Sep 2012, 08:05

37. -box- (Posts: 3878; Member since: 04 Jan 2012)


Hopefully I've of the unbiased writers will cover it and be fairly critical in their review. By critical I mean in the "critiquing" sense, not necessarily negative.

posted on 19 Sep 2012, 08:25 2

40. Altair (Posts: 340; Member since: 02 Feb 2012)


Ahh Anti MS/Nokia Victor writing positive review... Supprise supprise about this anti-innovative tall thing.

Apple just announced enchanced iPhone 4s and now semi upgrade 5. Now iFans are drooling like no tomorrow. Geez guys, just wait for the REAL upgrade Noki Lumia 920.

posted on 19 Sep 2012, 08:58

43. networkdood (Posts: 6326; Member since: 31 Mar 2010)


Careful....iphone arena mods may warn you....lol

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