Wednesday, 5 October 2011

iPhone 4s: What's in a Name?

I'm not sure if I understand the feverish disappointment that seems to be floating around the Internet these last 24 hours with regards to the new Apple iPhone 4s release. Mostly, it's disappointment that it's the iPhone 4s and not the iPhone 5. What's in a name?

Some writers are going so far as to say that they were going to buy the new iPhone, but it's just an iPhone 4s. Others are writing about the "why"of the name, labeling it a meager step forward for the iPhone product suite. My question is: what does it really matter?

What features are planned for the iPhone 5? I figure if anyone knew that outside of Apple, it'd be the folks over at Engadget. Turns out, it's all rumors and hearsay. Truth is, Apple guards its new product releases fairly well. No one really knows what to expect in the iPhone 5, so why the disappointment. If a new full-integer increment of an iPhone version is tied to the appearance of the case, such as would be the case with the move to iPhone 3G and iPhone 4, then go ahead and call the new iPhone the iPhone 5. It comes sporting a blistering fast A5 chip, larger HD, an improved antenna system, beefed up camera, and shiny back-side glass. Why didn't Apple call it iPhone 5? I don't know. When they released the 3Gs, the 'S' was presumed to mean 'speed'. The same is probably true here since the new version is nearly twice the speed of the iPhone 4.

But the real reason I think it's called the iPhone 4s and not the iPhone 5? Come on... you know this... 

It's to get droves of people to buy TWO new iPhones!

Apple probably knows it won't have enough significant hardware advances to release between October 2011 and October 2012 that would let them get away with an iPhone 6 in 2012. However some predict it may. But it doesn't really matter, does it? Apple knows they get lineups of people to buy every version of every product it releases, even when people have the previous version. I personally find this phenomenon intriquing, but this isn't the time to get into that.

So Apple ships iPhone 4s in November 2011, then iPhone 5 in November 2012. Then iPhone 6 in November 2013. And so on until iPhone X in November 2007+X. What does it matter what it's called? IF you were anticipating a new iPhone for this year and were hopeful to buy one, then go ahead, get the iPhone 4s and call it the iPhone 5 if you want. The fact that it isn't labeled what you wanted it to be labelled is moot, since no one has any real solid evidence of what the iPhone 5 will have anyway. 

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