Way back on July 25 (remember summer?), PriceGrabber published the results of a survey in which it asked consumers what they hoped to see from the upcoming iPhone 5 – or iPhone 4S, as we now know it.
Ten weeks later, Apple finally lifted the lid on its long-awaited successor to the iPhone 4. Were those consumers’ prayers answered? Well, yes and no.
Here are the top five features deemed “most important in their decision to purchase the iPhone 5”:
1. Improved battery life
This is a bit of a strange one, as the iPhone 4S offers an extra hour of talktime over the iPhone 4, however standby time drops quite significantly from 300 hours to 200. Apple concedes as much on its own iPhone comparison page. Personally, I’d rather have the additional standby time.
The jury’s still out on why the standby time is so much lower. Perhaps it’s some combination of iOS 5 and Apple’s dual-core A5 processor.
2. Cost reduction
“LOL,” as the kids say. A 16GB SIM free iPhone 4S will set you back £499, 32GB is £599, and a 64GB is £699. Contracts ain’t much better. In fact, it looks like it’s cheaper to go SIM free and pick up a giffgaff goodybag.
We were also hoping for some sort of budget iPhone 4, but Apple simply released an 8GB model at £429. With my shallow pockets, that price tag definitely doesn’t fall under “budget”.
3. 4G compatibility
This one’s a tad complicated. AT&T is reportedly keen to slap a 4G logo on its iPhone 4S, which would be an iPhone first. AT&T’s offering is faster than the Verizon and Sprint alternatives, but there’s still a bit of debate over what constitutes “4G”.
4. Larger screen
For months we’d been hearing conflicting rumours of both a modest iPhone 4S upgrade and a balls-out spanking new iPhone 5, but in either case the rumoured screen size was usually 4in.
Meanwhile, flagship smartphones such as the Samsung Galaxy S II, HTC Sensation and Droid Bionic all sport 4.3in displays, so a larger screen for the new iPhone was a no-brainer, right? Wrong.
The iPhone’s display size has remained firmly at 3.5in for four years now, across five different models. Of course, ideal screen size is entirely subjective, but I've no intention of downgrading from my current 4.3in.
5. Improved camera
Ask and ye shall receive. Or perhaps more accurately: ask for five things and ye shall receive one of them.
The iPhone 4S’ camera leaps from 5MP to 8MP, and throws in face detection too. At the iPhone 4S unveiling, Apple also boasted that the camera is much faster than the iPhone 4 and many of its rivals.
So there you have it. Of the top five things consumers hoped to see from the iPhone 5, only one - improved camera - was emphatically delivered. Improved battery life and 4G compatibility are somewhat of a grey area, but reduced cost and larger screen are definite nos.
Still, that didn’t stop Apple taking a million pre-orders in the first 24 hours. Sigh.