iPhone 4S Hands-Ons and First Impressions

With media members in attendance at Apple's iPhone 4S event having had the opportunity to spend some time with the new hardware following the presentation, hands-on reports and first impressions are beginning to come in.

iphone 4s white side shot
Engadget highlights the improved internal specs of the iPhone 4S, noting that everything "just feels zippier".

We were able to spend a few quality moments with the refreshed iPhone 4 here at Apple's campus, the Sprint flavor no less, and as you might expect... it's an iPhone 4. But S-ier. Much in the same way that the 3GS improved the overall experience of the 3G, the 4S does likewise compared to the existing 4. The dual-core A5 chip is a laudatory improvement, and whisking about pages, loading the camera application and launching -- well, just about everything -- just feels zippier.

Engadget was also impressed with the Siri personal assistant feature, describing their attempts to "psych it out" without success, as Siri "never faltered" in bringing up the requested information and transcribed voice input perfectly.

The BBC has also posted a brief video hands-on with the iPhone 4S, showing off a demonstration of the Siri functionality.


Finally, SlashGear also spent some time with the iPhone 4S and similarly found it to be very quick, with webpages rendering "instantly" and pinch-to-zoom being "silky smooth". SlashGear was also impressed with Siri's performance.

Apple’s new voice-control assistant, Siri makes promises that we’ve learnt to be wary about over the years, but after a brief test we’re surprisingly impressed. Easily activated, with a new microphone icon on the regular on-screen keyboard, Siri managed just what it did on-stage during the keynote. We could ask it local information, such as the weather or to find nearby stores, while online searching and complex questions for Wolfram Alpha were handled with little delay. Speed can be the killer for services like this – people just won’t wait if their phone takes 30 seconds to look up an answer – but Siri delivered in just seconds.

Apple will begin taking pre-orders for the iPhone 4S this Friday, with the device going on sale in the first batch of countries on Friday, October 14th. Pricing comes in at $199 for 16 GB, $299 for 32 GB, and $399 for 64 GB on contract, with both black and white models available in all capacities.

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Top Rated Comments

AtariMac Avatar
166 months ago
Nice to see some positive buzz. Reading MacRumors today is like reading the obituaries.
Score: 62 Votes (Like | Disagree)
rafaltrus Avatar
166 months ago
What a lame upgrade. Apple has fallen so far behind Android it's not even funny. Where's the iPhone 5 with the bigger screen?
I'm sorry... Did I miss something? Did Apple promise a bigger screen to come? I like this 4S. So many new features. Guys, seriously... It's getting tiresome; all this complaining over nothing.
Score: 42 Votes (Like | Disagree)
addicted44 Avatar
166 months ago
What a lame upgrade. Apple has fallen so far behind Android it's not even funny. Where's the iPhone 5 with the bigger screen?

Is that really the only reason you feel the iPhone has fallen behind?

How else has the iPhone fallen behind?

Honest questions. I understand people wanting a bigger screen (although, the iPhone size is ideal, since it just about allows 1 handed operation for me), but in what other way is the iPhone "behind"?
Score: 40 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Mattdsm Avatar
166 months ago
What a lame upgrade. Apple has fallen so far behind Android it's not even funny. Where's the iPhone 5 with the bigger screen?

I agree, it's definitely fallen behind Android in all areas such as units shipped (for a single model), revenue, profits, market capitalization, available apps, user experience, integration...
Score: 35 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Caliber26 Avatar
166 months ago
I, like everyone else, was hoping for the new iPhone 5, but I'm happy with the upgrades and new features + iOS 5. As for the whole bigger screen issue, well, this isn't the first time Apple has denied the masses what they demand. We all know how much they listened to those who whined and bitched about the lack of Blu-ray on their Macs. :rolleyes:

I'm also thinking that I'll get the white model this time. I think all the promotional material showcasing the white model has made me look at it as an entirely new phone. Very clever marketing.
Score: 24 Votes (Like | Disagree)
AtariMac Avatar
166 months ago
What a lame upgrade. Apple has fallen so far behind Android it's not even funny. Where's the iPhone 5 with the bigger screen?
Screen size is all that matters eh? This may not have been the upgrade you were looking to buy, but falling behind based on screen size? Seems like a pretty limited metric.

Just go buy an Android phone and enjoy it. That is the great thing about choice.
Score: 23 Votes (Like | Disagree)