iPhone 4S: “S” stands for spectacular (Kyle Simpson)

In an already crowded smart phone market, each new device has to bring some new, revolutionary feature to the table to even have a chance at success. Last year’s iPhone 4 changed the game in terms of graphic quality, speed, and design. While this year’s iPhone 4S doesn’t exactly reinvent the wheel, it makes it a whole lot faster.

The iPhone 4S changes nothing in terms of design for its predecessor, keeping the 3.5 inch display. This consistency is not a bad thing, but it would have been nice to see a bigger screen going forward, especially since newer Android phones are pushing 4-4.5 inch screens. The Retina display has also carried over, still giving stunning graphic performance. The main changes of the iPhone 4S are all on the inside. This iteration contains Apple’s custom A5 chip (the same chip used in the iPad 2). The A5 chip allows for two times more power than the A4 chip (which was used in the last iPhone), loading applications and scrolling through pages much faster, but also provides seven times the graphic speeds, allowing the device to stream textures and picture much quicker, making game play much smoother. One of Apple’s main selling points is the new eight mega-pixel camera with a new custom lens to capture more light and give a more natural picture. The new camera allows for 1080p high definition recording taken at 30 frames per second, as opposed to the iPhone 4’s 720p resolution. Auto-Stabilization has been another remarkable addition, giving the user a less shaky picture when taking video. Siri, the iPhone 4S’s built in voice control system, is a welcome addition to the iPhone’s already remarkable features. Whether you need an answer to a math problem, or you just need to know the weather, Siri will tell you. Siri has the ability to learn how you speak, and pick up on certain language key’s you use. She also has a bit of personality, with multiple websites devoted to things you can say to Siri and get comical answers to such inquiries like “I need to hide a body” or “Will you marry me?”, you could almost find yourself trying to get to know your phone. The only real downside to Siri is that she is still in the Beta phase and probably not as smart as she will be eventually. With some phrases going over her digital head, and sounds more like a GPS than an assistant, these are minor issues that can be over-looked in relation to her impressive features.

If you currently have an iPhone 4 and your contract is up, don’t fret. The iPhone 4S is not a huge leap from the 4, aside from Siri, which may be available to all devices at a later date any way. If your contract is up, give the iPhone 4S a try. It is a truly great phone- beating out most of its competition, despite not being the new wheel some people look for from Apple every year.