Omio News Blog

Apple iPhone 5: review roundup

Apple’s new iPhone 5 mobile phone has arrived early with a few different publications, where their reviews have now been published ahead of when the public can get their hands on the device.

Omio is now rounding up these reviews for your viewing pleasure, in order for you to get a better idea of what the various reviewers think about the new mobile.

The iPhone 5 arrives with a large 4-inch Retina display, HSPA+ and LTE connectivity, a faster processor than the iPhone 4S and an improved 8-MP sensor. This is while it’s 18 per cent thinner and 20 per cent lighter than last year’s model.


The Guardian noted that with features including Siri, turn-by-turn navigation, new maps, a panoramic camera, 4G, restore to iCloud and a new digital dock, the iPhone 5 has it all – and it is ahead of the competition again. It wrapped up its review of the Apple iPhone 5 with the following:

“It’s worth recalling that a smartphone isn’t a package of specifications. It’s that, plus features (the software that drives the onboard camera, say) and services (such as the software that runs Siri or the maps). Those who were quick to dismiss the iPhone 5 based on its specifications – but no experience with its features or services – made the mistake of thinking that a phone is just components. But it’s the gestalt that makes it a pleasant experience – or otherwise. For those who insist on NFC, or direct access to the phone’s file system, or the option of opening web pages in multiple different browsers, the iPhone and iOS will never be satisfactory.

But Apple doesn’t care. Steve Jobs once said that interfaces which spawned a lot of windows meant that “you get to be the janitor” – a post he didn’t relish. Android lets you be the janitor, air-conditioning chief and managing director; the iPhone lets you be the user. It’s a key difference in philosophy. You can’t do as much on the iPhone – but sometimes fewer choices mean faster decisions. Siri in particular is a revelation; expect to hear much more of its C#-listening-to-G#-acting pings around you.

As for the iPhone 5, it’s a lovely piece of equipment. Boring? Lacking wow? With its market value now crossing $700bn and iPhone 5 pre-orders through the roof, Apple might disagree.”


The Telegraph said in its review that the new design is excellent, while going on to state:

“The iPhone 5 is a marvellous piece of design, arguably the most beautiful object Apple has ever produced. It certainly stands comparison with the first iPod, the iMac and the original iPhone. Yes, it’s thinner and lighter and more powerful than the iPhone 4S but to really understand it, you need to hold it in your hand.

The iPhone 5 is a great smartphone made even better. It’s fast, lightweight and backed by the largest application store for any device. It’s also probably the most beautiful smartphone anyone has ever made.”


CNET in the UK has gone on record for the review to say that the iPhone 5 is everything we wanted after the iPhone 4S, with a larger display, a faster processor and 4G capability. It wrapped up with the followed conclusion.

“The iPhone 5 is an excellent smart phone, even if this upgrade is more about refinement than introducing exotic new features. If you want an enormous bells-and-whistles phone that’s exploding with features, then other mobiles (the Galaxy S3 springs to mind) offer that.

Needless to say, we wanted to see something we hadn’t thought of before, but that would suddenly seem indispensable. The iPhone 5 has no such novelty, but note that while tech enthusiasts understandably want to see promising new features, most phone shoppers will likely prefer this kind of polished revision.

It’s not a huge leap forward, but with a much improved design, iOS 6, a speedy processor and a larger screen, this is the best iPhone yet.”


The website companion to the print tech magazine T3 started its review with the Apple iPhone 5 is thinner, lighter and faster than its predecessors. But not necessarily its competitors. It ended the article on:

“So, what to make of this latest upgrade. There’s no denying that the iPhone 5 is a lovely thing, and the best iPhone to date. It could well be Apple’s best-selling unit ever.

But a lot has changed in a year, and the current crop of Android superphones – and the incoming Windows Phone 8 handsets – have closed the gap. For nearly every “new” feature announced at the Keynote, there was a Samsung, Android, Windows, Nokia, Sony or HTC fan saying “my phone already does that.”

Apple’s competitors never been closer in terms of quality, function and aesthetics and from your feedback on our social networks we know how many of you are jumping ship to phones with a bigger screen and more features.

Given that iPhone 4S users can upgrade to iOS 6 and do just about everything the iPhone 5 can do, and that Android users can get similarly impressive handsets for less dosh, we reckon the smart money won’t all be going on a new iPhone this year, even if the mass market can’t get enough of it. It’s good, very good. But it’s no longer the best around.”


The UK tech website Pocket-lint noted for the review that the iPhone 5 is a phone that makes you feel safe. A phone that you know exactly how to use as soon as you take it out of the box and that is perfect for a wide range of people. The verdict of the piece is as follows:

“What Apple has created with the iPhone 5 is an extremely polished smartphone that oozes appeal. It’s incredibly well built, easy to use, features a beautiful screen, and comes packed with enough speed and power to service all your requirements. The hardware is just stunning. It really is impressive how much is crammed into such a tiny box.

On the software front the story isn’t as cut and dried. Apple’s iOS operating system is clean and easy to use, but iOS 6 adds little to the story over iOS 5. It doesn’t feel like it has taken the same leap forward as the hardware, and that this version of the OS has been more about filling gaps or replacing services rather than re-writing what’s available from the ground up. There are some nice touches, but they are just that.

Change isn’t always necessary, nor needed, but if there were things you didn’t like in iOS 5, chances are they will still be here in iOS 6. Microsoft’s Windows Phone trounces iOS 6 on the social connected stakes even though Apple has added Facebook this time around. BlackBerry’s BB10 OS, due out in February 2013, beats it on the email and messaging integration (we’ve played with the OS already), and Android is perfect for those that want customisation and control beyond choosing wallpapers.

That’s not to say it is a poor experience, far from it. The chances are you will be more than happy with the performance of the phone and what it offers on the software stakes. The iPhone is still the smartphone we would recommend when it comes to apps. While Android is getting closer to enjoying a parallel launch schedule for apps, Windows Phone and BlackBerry are light years behind the ingenuity shown on a daily basis either from Apple or third-party developers.

While the hardware and design here is cutting edge, the software plays it safer than we would like. For those of you that have already left the Apple eco-system for Samsung or HTC, for example, the iPhone 5 isn’t likely to draw you back. You might marvel at the build and design, but Apple with the iPhone 5 has created a smartphone that is too safe for you: you’ll feel too mollycoddled.

Instead Apple has created a phone that the millions of current iPhone users will want to upgrade to. iPhone owners will love it, enjoy all those new features, and appreciate all the hard work, design, and engineering that has gone into it.

The iPhone 5 is a phone that makes you feel safe. A phone that you know exactly how to use as soon as you take it out of the box and that is perfect for a huge number of people.

It’s a phone that, until you start craving the iPhone 6, will serve you very well indeed.”


Stuff’s magazine website version has said that the iPhone 5 is enhanced, refined and more powerful than ever, the iPhone 5 has reclaimed the smartphone throne. It ended the review with:

“So, is the iPhone 5 worth the money? Absolutely. And has Apple done enough to reclaim the top smartphone spot with the iPhone 5? It has, but not quite in the imperious style of the past. Android has gained so much in the last 12 months that the iPhone went from being unbeaten in years to being beaten twice in the space of a few weeks, and its live widgets and open platform will continue to sway people towards the Samsung Galaxy S3 or HTC One X.

But while the iPhone 4S was beaten, it wasn’t beaten by much, and the refinements and upgrades it’s undergone to produce the iPhone 5 are enough to see Apple overthrow the Android upstarts. It might not floor you in pictures, but in the flesh, the iPhone 5 is a delight. And if it feels just right, it performs even better, with flawless operation and a screen that’s downright stunning. It’s not flashy and it’s not radical, but it is a significant improvement over what was an already excellent device, and it still has the best selection of apps available on any handset. All of that adds up to the best smartphone on the market – at least for now.”

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Rob Kerr