Is the new iPhone 4S worth it?

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Despite the major disappointment that was the announcement of the iPhone 4S when everyone was expecting something completely different (such as an iPhone 5), everyone still flocked to either get one of the first units delivered to stores, or test it out.

Coming from someone who’s last phone was an iPhone 3GS that was about to catch on fire, I have to say that the new 4S is a huge step up.  From the first couple of uses, I could already tell that there were huge differences.

Physically, the new 4S has the exact same dimensions as its iPhone 4 counter part (only that it weights .1 ounce more) and when doing a side-by-side comparison the only notable difference was that a couple of dividers were gone or rearranged in the metal band surrounding both models.

However, this model’s differences were all internal (much like how they did with the transition of the iPhone 3 to the 3GS).  This model includes the new, improved, and incredibly fast Dual-core A5 Processor Chip.

From first glance, the new processor chip makes a big difference.  When the 4S is set side-by-side to the 4 and you test everything (from start up to launching apps, multitasking, downloads, and web browsing), the 4S blows it all out of the water.  The new A5 Processor Chip also comes in handy when it has to handle the new iOS 5.

For all of the people out there who love taking pictures of everything with their iPhones, you’re in luck!  The new model comes bundled with a new 8 mega-pixel camera that makes the pictures that are taken on any other iPhone model look like they were taken in the 1950’s (without instagram).  All the pictures taken with the back camera are sharp and the colors really pop making everything look pretty legitimate…. for a phone camera.  The LED flash is a nice feature too.  The new camera is also able to take HD video.

The next big feature that everyone had been looking forward to is the new voice-activated assistant, Siri, whether you use it for an actual assistant or as pure entertainment.  Some of the handy features it includes is finding restaurants on command, answering questions, sending text messages, or creating reminders.  Also, if you have some extra time on your hands, feel free to ask Siri how it’s day is, or where it came from… Or just throw insults back and forth. Your choice.

Of course, what everyone has been waiting for is the new jam-packed iOS 5 software (namely, because it’s going to be available for the 4 and 3GS).  With the new iOS, multi-tasking has never been more organized and efficient.  Its nice when you are doing something like playing a game and you get a little banner at the top telling you what is going on in other apps like Twitter or Facebook.  Speaking of Twitter, it is now fully integrated into the operating system through the Twitter App, Safari, Photos, Camera, YouTube, and Maps; which comes in handy.

Another iOS 5 feature that is nice to have is the notification center which you activate by swiping down on the screen.  All of your text, reminders, events, mentions and notifications are all in one easy-to-access place.

One of the biggest new features is iMessage.  I think this feature is really going to kick-off after a while because of the functionality.  Basically it detects if the person you are texting is on an iOS 5 device and automatically switches it over.  Since this is done over WiFi, 3G, or edge, it’s completely free and can be connected to any device that runs the same operating system such as an iPad or iPod Touch. 

I personally think it is simply a matter of time before this becomes a web application that will be available on Apple computers and eventually take over texting and Blackberry’s BBM, eventually merging all conversations and revolutionize the way we message.

Overall, I think Apple’s release of the iPhone 4S was a good move despite the few physical differences.  The new hardware and operating system makes a good pair for an ultimate mobile experience.