Is PNG ready for the iPhone 5?
There is much talk among the gadget community in Papua New Guinea about Apple’s latest smartphone version, iPhone 5, and phone vendors like T-Mobile, Theodist, Comserv, Chemcare and Fone Haus have already indicated they will be stocking up.
The hype follows the huge success of its sale during the first twenty four (24) hours and fact that it’s supposed to be an improvement over its predecessor, the iPhone 4S, with newer features and dimensions. However, the major question is “are we ready for it? Is Papua New Guinea (PNG) ready for the iPhone 5?”
Is Papua New Guinea ready for the iPhone 5?
The most obvious thing about this smartphone is that it’s a lot smaller and sleeker. Apple, on their website, said that the iPhone 5 is 18% thinner and 20% lighter. This is of course a welcome feature for all mobile users. However, the screen display has been increased making it sweet eye candy. Unfortunately, you might not be able to use your old iPhone SIM card on this device.
According to Apple, the iPhone 5 will take a ‘revolutionary’ new SIM card called the ‘nano SIM’. The older versions of the iPhone used the micro SIM; a card smaller than the standard ones. However, this time they have made it 40% smaller, compared to the regular SIM card and 18% smaller compared to the micro SIM, to allow more physical space in the phone. Now, this could mean many different things for iPhone users in the country.
The new SIM obviously means that users will need to get their SIM cards replaced. This will obviously cost the customers a little more than your regular card. There is also the question of availability. Will the SIM cards be readily available or are we going to wait?
Fortunately, knowing Digicel, we probably will be ready by the time stocks arrive on our shores. But if you don’t want to wait then Redmond Pie has instructions on how to convert your micro SIM to nano (do at your own risk!)
Another feature of the new smartphone that has got us excited is the ability to use the long term evolution (LTE or 4G LTE) network standard which boasts up to 22mpbs download which is actually faster than many ADSL networks in the home and some offices.
This technology also uses less battery power allowing the phone to last longer. Unfortunately, this standard (LTE) is yet to be implemented in the country so we might not be enable to enjoy it – yet! However, the iPhone works well with existing 3G networks as well.
Another feature that has drawn criticism is the new Maps application which is much like Google Maps but built from the ground up. Now, if you’ve used the other iPhones then you will be familiar with Google Maps which came standard with Youtube. However, the patent feud between Samsung and Apple has forced the latter to drop these apps and create its own.
Google Maps and Youtube is owned by Google Inc., which is a major partner with Samsung who uses their Android OS to run their smartphones. The relationships is not completely severed yet as Apple still uses processors made by Samsung in the United States (US).
Many people have complained that Maps is not working as it was promised. However, critics should have expected this considering the relationship between Google and Apple.
This of course does not affect the Papua New Guinea user as many of our streets are yet to be mapped on Google and Bing and other major online maps. However, it’s another app that will not be fully utilized here.
On the positive side, the iPhone 5 camera can take pictures in an amazing 8 megapixels and also has the ability to take panoramic snapshots in a stunning 28 megapixels with a 19% more resolution than the iPhone 4S.
The phone also, for the first time, has integrated Facebook which the social monkeys will really enjoy plus Siri now has been upgraded to understand accents better especially the different English accents (Australian, British and American).
The iPhone 5 runs on Apple’s iOS6 which and has many enhanced features. People with previous iPhones versions and iPad can freely upgrade to iOS6 which is a bonus for Apple users. However, I am still reluctant about this new iPhone.
As a self-proclaimed tech guru, I welcome any new changes in technology especially in PNG and I hope I get to try them. However, sometimes I get the feeling that we are being sold overpriced technology for features that we will never use.
People are ready, technology is not
The answer to the initial question, “Is PNG ready for the iPhone 5?” is YES. The citizens of are
fully capable and ready to use the new features on the iPhone 5. However, technology here is still lacking behind which makes its uneconomical to buy something which you probably will not be able to fully utilize.
Suppliers and vendors of the iPhone in Papua New Guinea have yet to announce a date for its release in the country. However, due to the huge sales it has been getting in other countries, I’m guessing somewhere around mid to late October for the iPhone 5 to hit our shores.