Editor’s note: Be sure to read my note at the end of the post.
On Friday, cellular carrier T-Mobile released the widely anticipated iPhone 5 to their customers. Until this point, if you wanted to own an Apple phone and use it with T-Mobile, you would have to purchase it directly from Apple or a 3rd party and unlock it to use with the carrier, which could invalidate the warranty. Now you can just walk in to your local T-Mobile store, drop $99.00 and leave with an iPhone… and pay $20 a month towards the final payment of $579.00. But don’t sweat the little things.
When Apple releases a new product, even a minor upgrade like the 4s, fans of the company line up the night before, hordes descend upon the Apple store and if you are one of the lucky few to not get trampled, you may just walk out with the latest gadget. When I decided on Friday that I would go to T-Mobile and inquire about the new phone, I psyched myself up for just such an event. Battle armor on, I made my way to the Midtown location and waltzed right in during lunch time. Phew! I missed the stampede.
A friendly associate greeted me and helped me to a customer service agent who, upon hearing me even say the word Apple, produced two boxes for me. One black, the other white. I figured these must be display models, you know, to show me the options I had for what was on back stock. Nope! I could take one home that very day. I guess the mad dash to get an iPhone for my carrier wasn’t the major event I thought it would be. In fact, the more I thought on this, I realized that the whole Apple vs. Android debate was a thing of the past. Both phones do nearly the exact same thing and people who wanted an iPhone on T-Mobile, would have gone ahead and gotten unlocked one, or switched to a carrier that supported earlier versions. My desire to stay with my cellular company, mixed with not wanting to spend nearly $600 outright on a phone made me an anomaly for the T-Mobile customer. I was *really* excited to buy my second, ever, Apple product! (I was late to the iPod game and just got one last year)
Now, going from an Android-based system to an iPhone isn’t so easy. I know Apple totes they are user friendly, but when you are used to a more complex system, no matter how much of a tech guru you are, you are still left feeling feeble and in need of a help desk. Luckily all my friends have iPhones and were able to guide me through the process, make sure I had all the must need apps (add me on LinePlay you all!), and set my phone up so it does practically everything I need ever. I can operate my TV with this thing. The future is finally here!
This thing is fast. Like, it turns on and everything is right there! My old phone, a first gen HTC Sensation 4G, took forever to boot up. My apps started to get lagged down, it would take forever just to access my email. The battery life barely lasted half a day, and when you’re an on-the-go journalist, you need a phone that can support all your calling, researching, texting and food deliveries!
Though one of the first things I replaced was Apple Maps. I’m a Google girl through and through, and once you get the hang of how Google maps works on the iPhone, you won’t use anything else. I’m also a big picture taker. The camera is on par with my old HTC, though the front facing camera has a much higher resolution. I’m still having a hard time with the layout. I like the idea of folders, because it’s easy to have your screens fill up with apps. I miss my old favorites page, but the contacts section is much better organized on the iPhone. I’ve already had late night arguments with Siri, so you know this marriage is finally sealed.
Tech capabilities aside, I’m excited to send stupid emojis to my friends, not feeling left out of group chats, and generally just be part of the Apple club. As someone who used to be anti-Apple, I can see now why people gravitate to the brand. It’s a cool little machine that does a whole lot, and how it seamlessly works with other Apple products makes you pretty reliant on it. I have no hate for my Droid cousins, and in some ways I still miss how intuitive that phone was, but after a weekend with my iPhone, I don’t ever see myself going back.
Editor’s note: Dear Meredith, you know what they say, never say never! Before saying you’re never going back, you have at least to try a current-generation Android-based smartphone, like the Samsung Galaxy SIII, which I’m a proud owner of. There’s many reasons why the S3 is considered by many a better option than the iPhone 5, and let’s not forget that the S4 is right around the corner now. The iPhone is an excellent smartphone, I’m not denying that, but I think we all need to keep an open mind when it comes to gadgets, right? :)
Author’s Note: Dear Editor, I would have waited for the Galaxy S4, but my old Android broke and I needed a new phone stat. ;D