Apple’s new iPhone is very nearly here, and even with a nearly two-hour keynote out of the way, and a Web site full of specifications, there are plenty of questions that need answering.
*Here are FAQ to help get to the bottom of some of them*
What’s different about the iPhone 5?
On the outside, the iPhone 5’s main difference is its taller, thinner design. The display now measures 4 inches diagonally (up from 3.5 inches), which gives you an extra row of icons and more space for browsing, apps, and movies. Inside there’s a faster A6 chip, camera improvements, and an extra microphone.
What about that new dock connector?
What Apple calls Lightning is a new proprietary connector that’s 80 percent smaller than the old 30-pin connectors. Its main feature: there’s no top or bottom, so you can plug it in either way.
The glass on the back is gone?
Yes and no. The back of the new device is mainly metal, though there are glass windows on the top and bottom of the phone to let the various antennas communicate. Apple’s done something similar on past versions of the iPod Touch, and even the iPad with 3G.
Does this mean it will be more durable, or less prone to breaking when dropped?
That remains to be seen.
And the SIM is even smaller?
Unfortunately, larger SIMs won’t work in the iPhone 5 and now we’re getting an even smaller nano SIM
Will the battery life change?
There’s no change in battery life between last year’s model and this year’s mode when it comes to talk time. Like the iPhone 4S, the iPhone 5 is rated for 8 hours of talking over 3G.
The iPhone 5 has an edge on battery life when it comes to other features though. The iPhone 5 gets 8 hours of Web browsing over LTE, up from the 6 hours the 4S gets over 3G. When on Wi-Fi, the iPhone 5 also gets 10 hours of browsing on Wi-Fi, up an hour from the iPhone 4S’ 9 hours.
What colors will be available?
There is still just black and white. Gone from the new model is a single-colored glass back. Instead, you get colored aluminum, which sits between two small panes of colored glass.
Will I be able to use the iPhone 5 overseas?
Yes, though there are a couple of caveats. With the iPhone 5, Apple is doing away with the dual-mode GSM/CDMA support that we saw in all versions of the iPhone 4S. Instead, it’s selling three distinct iPhone 5 versions: one CDMA-based model and two GSM-based models with slightly different LTE bands. As with the iPhone 4S, Verizon and Sprint customers won’t be able to connect to GSM networks in the United States, but they will be able to connect to them when overseas. So, yes, the iPhone 5 will be a mostly global phone no matter which version you have.