The iPhone 4S, is Apple SIRI-ous?

5 Oct 2011

With the news yesterday that Apple would be delaying on the much talked-about iPhone 5, there has been a mixed reaction to the iPhone 4S so far around the world.

While the majority in the tech community anticipated the 4S, the consumer market was a little more ambitious with its expectations from Apple’s conference. #iPhone5 was one of the top 10 trending topics on Twitter in the build up to the event and many bloggers had already published lists of things to look forward to in the iPhone 5. The disappointment can be seen across the social media platforms with the most retweeted response to #thingstoasksiri last night being “Where is the iPhone 5”.

It is not just the bloggers and microbloggers who have reacted a little warily to the iPhone 4S. The stock market, too, dealt with the news with a little caution. Shares in Apple were up on the day in the build up to the announcement of the new device, but in the hours after, the share price had dropped 5.5pc from its peak of $381.47 a share, to $354.89 just after 3pm EST.

But why?

Well, after 18 months without an upgrade it seems iPhone users feel a little underwhelmed by the enhancements the 4S will offer. The following graph from socialnuggets details what major enhancements iPhone users wanted from the proposed iPhone 5.


As we can see, the two least-requested upgrades were to the processor and to voice control. While the former is an upgrade that was felt necessary by all (upgrade to A5 chip, exactly the same as the iPad 2) it is the latter that Apple had pinned its “wow factor” on, with the announcement of “Siri”, the artificial intelligence voice-controlled application.

While attributes like real-time Messaging, better camera and operating system have been addressed, it is the top 3 most-requested features that signal a cause for concern, with design change being untouched, confusion over carrier networks and 4G unrecognised. For now, it remains to be seen if the 4S will withstand heavy pressure from new HTC and Samsung smartphones, and with the Android 4.0, 4G Nexus Prime due for release next week, it could be an interesting few months in the smartphone market.

The iPhone 4S will be available in Ireland from 28 October.

Adam Renardson