Apple has released on sale it’s new iPhone 4S smart phone.As thousands of people have queued for hours around the world waiting for the release, hundreds of people queued up for hours outside London’s Covent Garden Apple Store to be the first to get their hands on the new Apple iPhone 4S which went on sale for the first time on Friday morning.
Apple fans and staff from the store counted down the seconds until the store officially opened at 9am. Moments later customers emerged from the shop excitedly clutching the new piece of technology.
However, staff at the Covent Garden store were coy about the availability of the new phone.
“It’s very hard to judge how easy it will be as we don’t know how many people are going to come. The volume of phones we have in replicate the high demand and if you come early, say 8am, you will have a good chance of getting one,” one shop assistant said.
The smartphone’s UK launch repeated scenes similar in Australia and Japan, which were among the first countries to release of Apple’s new iPhone 4S.
The iPhone is the world’s biggest selling smartphone and some analysts expect fourth-quarter iPhone shipments to be as high as 30 million units, almost double last year’s figure.
It might look the same but the iPhone 4S is significantly faster than its predecessor, with a new camera and – this year’s most attention-grabbing feature – a clever voice control service called Siri. In hindsight, this year’s upgrade makes sense: it mirrors the 2009 upgrade from iPhone 3G to iPhone 3GS.
Overall, the iPhone 4S is a good upgrade to a very good phone.
It retains the stylish design of the iPhone 4 and gives it a substantial boost. It’s certainly not cheap when you consider some of the alternatives but it feels like a luxury product and it’s an absolute joy to use.
If you own the iPhone 4, then whether you upgrade or not depends on how tempted you are by Siri and the new camera. The upgrades in iOS 5 might be enough for iPhone 4 owners. 3GS owners should be in the queue already.
Bolt on iOS 5 – the new version of the operating system – and iCloud, Apple’s cloud storage service, and you have a pretty compelling package. It’s especially compelling for those iPhone 3GS owners whose two-year contracts are just coming to an end.