Did you manage to get your iPhone 4 early? If not, then you’ve probably seen the plethora of reviews that keep getting released online. While we’ve scoured the ‘net, we landed on the legendary Walt Mossberg’s review of the next iteration of iPhone from Apple. For someone who’s had the device for a week, he has a pretty clear-cut review of what Apple has created. True to form, the design, hardware, and software are all top-notch, but obviously not everything can be shiny in the iPhone realm. Find out after the break what it is that Mossberg feels brings down the iPhone 4 from greatness.
Right off the bat, Mossberg makes it clear that he believes the iPhone 4 is an upgrade that translates well into the real world. As he puts it, “…overall, Apple has delivered a big, well-designed update that, in my view, keeps it in the lead in the smartphone wars.” That’s a pretty bold statement, considering the competition that’s out there. But, he goes on to bolster the statement, stating that the iPhone 4 manages to pack a ridiculous amount of features into a body that’s 24% thinner than the previous model. We’ve seen the discussion about the display, and Mossberg says that he has no idea how it compares to the human retina, but that he does know that the screen shows no jagged lines, even when the content is expanded “to giant size.”
As for FaceTime, he says that it’s one of the handset’s bets features. You still need that WiFi connection to make the video call happen, but that comes with its own benefits: free minutes, as the video does not count as a voice call. He dives into multitasking as well, saying that while Apple has finally delivered the much-called for feature, they’ve done it in such a way that it won’t make everyone happy. Just because there’s multitasking, doesn’t mean that every application can work in the background. Apple’s allowed only a few application types to work fully in the background, which includes application like Pandora (which lets you stream music in the background now, no matter what else you’re doing). Others include Internet calling applications, or applications that need long download times. However, on the contrary, applications like Twitter and Facebook still don’t work in the background; they simply pause in place. Yes, they do update faster than their predecessors on previous iOS versions, but it’s still not bringing down content in the background.
Now, for the downside. No, it has nothing to do with the iPhone 4. No, it doesn’t have anything to do with the limited multitasking. And no, it doesn’t have anything to do with anything else that has anything to do with Apple, or the iPhone. In fact, but perhaps not at all surprising to most, Mossberg says the big downside of the new iPhone is the fact that it’s “shackled to AT&T.” He goes on to say that, even compared to its predecessor, the iPhone 3GS, the iPhone 4 does better in some places, and worse in others. Apple’s apparently working on a bug fix that will help the iPhone 4 better translate how many bars are displayed, versus the ability to make a call, so that may help in some ways. But, in his trials and tests, he still saw the limited networking capability that has bogged down all of the other versions of the iPhone before the fourth generation model releases. He closes his review stating that Apple has built a beautiful smartphone, and if you’re looking for a device that works well in of itself, has impressive features, and is still “overall, the best device in its class,” then you can’t go wrong with the iPhone 4. You can be the judge here shortly, in a matter of days in fact, as long as you were one of the 600,000 to get your pre-order in.
Check out the video below of our own hands-on time with iPhone 4 and the iOS4, at the launch event.
[via All Things D]