iPhone 4s Unveiled

One thing guaranteed to get attention and create buzz is any new Apple product unveiling – whether or not one is an Apple fanboy / fangirl. Yesterday’s was no exception. It was noteworthy in part because of the absence of Steve Jobs. But Tim Cook and other Apple executives did not disappoint.

Various products were updated, but the new iPhone 4s gets the most attention. Here is a summary from the Canoe Tech blog about the 4s and its introduction in Canada. Here is a link from the Apple site that has more detail and a couple of videos. 

One thing I am mystified about is that Apple stock apparently dropped a bit after the announcement based on disappointment that they unveiled the iPhone 4s, not the iPhone 5. I get that stocks are priced on anticipation, but as far as I can tell, the only thing Apple may have done wrong was to call it 4S instead of 5.

It may look like the 4, but inside it has a faster processor, better graphics, better camera with features such as image stabilization, a world phone compatible with several cell systems, better call quality, and more. It also includes Siri, an intelligent assistant that responds to natural language voice commands. For example, if you say to the phone, “do I need an umbrella today”, it will bring up the weather forecast for your location.

The improvements are enough that anyone with earlier models, especially 3 or 3G models, will feel the “need” to upgrade.



  1. David, I’ve read reports that Siri won’t be available in Canada (yet?). And indeed if you go to the iPhone site for Apple Canada, there’s no mention of Siri in the features. Do you have any knowledge one way or the other?

  2. There is some uncertainty about Siri in Canada. From what I have gleaned so far, it seems that we won’t get a localized version for a while, but we will be able to use the US version. Don’t know what that means in practice.

  3. I think the drop makes a little sense, if the price was elevated in expectation of an iPhone 5 that is to the iPhone 4 as that was to the 3GS.

    When the iPhone 4 came out, it was significantly better: in terms of speed and, particularly, the retina display. It also looked distinctly different, you knew whether somebody had the 3GS or the 4 immediately. When the 4 came out, people replaced their 3GSs. While the upgrades to the 4S are nice, the majority of current 4 owners probably won’t feel left behind. Certainly not enough to justify a $700 off-contract price. The biggest features announced yesterday are all in software and will be available (are already available to developers) on the iPhone 4. With the exception of Siri, those software upgrades are 4-month old news (and technically Siri is two-year old news).

    The upgrades from the remaining 2-3 year-old 3G and the 3GS that you mentioned would have happened this year regardless of Apple’s announcement yesterday. They might even be hurt because people who could resist the 4 for a year might be able to resist the 4S while they wait for a game-changing 5.