The new iPhone that Apple unveiled on Wednesday does not have the
biggest screen of any smartphone on the market, nor is it the first to
offer Internet access over the latest, speediest wireless networks.
executives say that does not matter. They care more about building the
best phone, they say, and combining technologies into the most
attractive package, not being first with the latest bells and whistles.
feel the need to be the best," said Timothy D. Cook, Apple's chief
executive, in a conversation after the event announcing the new device,
the iPhone 5.
"We don't view our products as a checklist of features," he added.
new iPhone has a larger, four-inch screen, faster wireless Internet
speeds and a more powerful chip than the previous version of the
company's smartphone. It is 18 percent thinner and 20 percent lighter.
is the first time Apple has altered the dimensions of the iPhone's
display, which has measured 3.5 inches diagonally since the original
iPhone was released in 2007. While the display at that time seemed
gigantic compared with the tiny screens on most cellphones, Apple's
competitors have been far more aggressive in pushing bigger displays on
their smartphones, with some screens approaching five inches.
Apple said the new display offered a bigger canvas for activities like reading books, browsing Web sites and watching movies.
device will also work on the latest variety of high-speed data network
with wireless carriers, known as LTE, which other companies have
included in their products for some time.
Even though the product
is not as startling as the original iPhone - the likes of which had not
been seen before in the electronics industry - analysts still expect the
iPhone 5 to be a hot seller this holiday season.
Investors seemed to agree, sending Apple's shares up $9.20, or 1.4 percent, to close at $669.79 after the event.
device, which will go on sale on Sept. 21, will start at $199 with a
two-year wireless contract, a price similar to that of previous
In what could be one of Apple's more vexing moves with a
new product, though, the company got rid of the traditional 30-pin dock
connector for attaching the iPhone to power cables, stereo docking
stations and other peripherals, replacing it with a smaller connector it
The change means owners of existing iPhone
accessories will have to buy an adapter from Apple so they can plug the
new phone into those devices. The adapters are on sale at the Apple
store for $30 for one version and $40 for another.
Apple said it
made the change because the new connector was more durable, freed space
for other technologies inside the iPhone and enabled the iPhone 5's
thinner design. The company said many of the functions of traditional
iPhone cables, other than charging, were now handled by wireless
connections like Bluetooth.
In a brief interview after the event,
Philip W. Schiller, Apple's senior vice president of worldwide
marketing, said the company was offering the adapter to try to make the
shift to the new technology as painless as possible for its users.
"At some point you have to move to the next generation," he said
Gartenberg, an analyst at Gartner, said the iPhone 5 showed how Apple
approaches new technologies cautiously until it is sure it can deliver
the best experience possible.
The first phones that supported LTE,
for example, were often criticized for poor battery life, but Apple
waited until it could offer a product that could hold a charge long
enough, he said.
In the new product, Apple also chose not to
support near-field communication wireless technology, which can be used
to make wireless payments but has been slow to take off.
said the four-inch display was the perfect size because it could be
easily held in one hand. Apple made the screen taller, but not wider,
than the previous generation of iPhone for that very reason, he said.
Copyright 2012 The New York Times News Service
iPhone 5 launch in pics