Glass HA-PLLE or Glass Half Empty?


Rachel Ng

As soon as the iPhone 5 came out, people started wondering what about the iPhone 5s would be different. Would it be bigger? Faster? Thinner? These questions were discussed for a year, until a week ago when all was unveiled. On September 10, 2013, Apple announced the launch of its new products, the iPhone 5s and its partner, the iPhone 5c. The Iphone 5s will be available in stores tomorrow, September 20. iOS 7, the new software with which these phones operate, was available as of yesterday, September 18th. Apple’s latest is sparking new opinions all over the board.

What is different about the new iPhones? Apple sums it up in three words: beauty, simplicity, and dimension.

Beauty: iOS7 brings a screen with sharper precision and a blast of color on app icons. In fact, the phone’s layout and interface color follow a similar theme, adding a sense of connection and unity to all of the apps.

Simplicity: This interface is easy to use, even for a beginner. This was achieved by removing unnecessary design features such as bars and buttons to focus on content and keeping the interface uniform throughout each screen.

Lastly, Dimension: new animations allow iPhone photos to seem as realistic as possible, and multitasking is easier with new layers of translucency in menus. As to physical aspects of the phone, Apple has launched a metallic gold finish to the phone’s exterior as another buying option. A more drastic innovative advancement in Apple’s iOS7 is the fingerprint scanner (replacing the lock screen password) which some consider a hit, others a miss.

Because Silicon Valley is the heart of technology, most local residents are aware of Apple’s latest merchandise. As a result, there are a multitude of clashing opinions about the iPhone 5s, 5c, and iOS 7.

Freshman Maddie Burns downloaded the new software on Wednesday, and she believes it is cutting-edge, especially with uploading photos to Facebook.

“It is almost like a 3D movie because it [the interface] pops in and out into certain items. It also is a lot prettier because the messages are white, grey, and blue!” Burns said. She also states that the new multitasking menu with a preview of each page is very convenient.

The multitasking menu, similar to the iOS 6, is used by double tapping the Home button. Recently used app icons would then show up, and users could hold down and tap on them to exit a currently active app. Now, in iOS 7, screenshot-like images of each app are displayed, and with the swipe of a finger, one can easily exit that app. Another new addition is iTunes Radio, which is similar to Pandora or Spotify.

One of the few complaints about iOS 7 is that it looks identical to the Android interface, and its simplicity is plain.

An update to the exterior of the phone is the option of having a metallic gold finish. The iPhone 5c, or Color, features five bright colors (white, pink, yellow, blue, and green), and is made from a plastic outer shell and a matching case. The iPhone 5c is the same as the iPhone 5, aside from its fresh backing.

Colorwise, gold seems to be the student favorite. Moreover, the iPhone 5c evokes some interest in students, as it is less pricey, and the durable plastic cover would potentially save the phone from shattering if dropped. The cost of the iPhone 5s is $199 for a 16 GB and $299 for 32 GB. iPhone 5c’s range from $99 for 16 GB to $199 for 32 GB.

On the flip side, people claim that the color infusion of the 5c is too similar to the new iPod touch, and the plastic appears to be cheap. A sophomore, Morgan Ohara, predicts that the “iOS 7 and iPhone 5c are impractical for everyday use,” because screen shots are alerted to the sender and the colors are too eccentric. The 5c gives the impression that Apple hurried to think of a product and decided to copy its fast-selling iPod touches. In addition, thirty-five dollars for a matching case does not seem like a good deal. The fingerprint technology of the iPhone 5 is something new and improved that many consumers will appreciate whether for security or entertainment purposes, and the gold casing has a classic look. Overall, the new iPhone 5s features are strong updates.

Whether one is attracted to Apple’s latest developments or not, Apple’s future is still in question; will it continue to be the powerhouse of modern technology or did its innovation die with Steve Jobs? This question lies in the years to come. For now, citizens of the Silicon still adhere to the old proverb: An Apple a day keeps the doctor away.