Oh how far the great have fallen. Today’s iPhone 5 announcement was interesting to behold not because of any new innovative features that Apple has come out with, but because of just how lackluster the new device actually is. Everything the Cupertino company hailed as revolutionary has already been done in one form or another and people are starting to notice it. Even die-hard critics of Windows Phone are suddenly looking at the Lumia 920 as something fresh and innovative on the market, where as just a few years ago holding out for the new iPhone was a trend.
So what happened? Apple started playing catch up. The company releases only one smartphone in a year, when major Android manufacturers and even Nokia will have released two. The Lumia 900 debuted in April of this year, with the Lumia 920 scheduled to hit shelves some time in November. That’s just under six months of innovation when Apple has had over a year to get things right, yet it’s still missing crucial things that most Android and Windows Phones have.
So what’s innovative about the iPhone 5? It has a 4″ screen. The Lumia 920 has a 4.5″ screen. The Lumia 900 and the Lumia 800, released a year before it had 4.3″ and 4″ screens respectively. With the added screen real estate, Apple were able to add a fifth row for icons. You know, that row of icons that sits on your screen doing nothing but occasionally offering a red bubble with a number in it. Those. Another row of those.
It also has a camera infused with sapphire-based technology, or so I’ve heard. Apple had a good jab at Nokia after displaying images taken by the new iPhone and the iPod Touch, but I have a feeling we’ll see PureView stabilization wins out over what the new iPhone 5 has. Nokia had a severe misstep in not being upfront and honest about their OIS stabilization presentation, but once consumers get the devices in their hands, the technology will speak for itself.
With the new screen size, Apple has willingly introduced fragmentation into its walled garden that it previously touted as having just one resolution and screen size to worry about. Suddenly all the vitriol the company was hurling Google’s way looks a bit hypocritical. Amidst all this, Apple announced an update to iTunes and iOS 6 and that’s it. No extra apps, no extra innovation. Nokia announced several new apps including the innovative City Lens pictured above. That’s just one of the apps Windows Phone 7/8 users have in their arsenal.
Suddenly, Apple is looking a lot less significant in this Game of Phones.