Are you constantly plugged in to your phone, email and social media?
Well, you’re in luck. Apple has not only unveiled its latest release, but also developed improvements for its older iOS 6 software.
The new iPhone 5 will start shipping in Canada and the U.S. on Sept. 21. Advance orders will start this Friday.
It’s thinner and lighter than previous models, and has a bigger screen.
It will also come with the capability to connect to the faster 4G cellular networks known as LTE, both in the U.S., Canada and overseas. Some competing phones have had this ability for more than a year.
Apple also says the iPhone 5 will have faster Wi-Fi, along with a faster processing chip.
There is one big change to the phone: it’s getting a new connector to attach to computers and chargers. To date, the phones have used the same one as the iPod.
Apple marketing head Phil Schiller says the old connector has “served us well for nearly a decade, but so much has changed.”
That means the new iPhone won’t be compatible with old accessories, though Schiller says accessory makers are already working to update their products. Apple will sell an adapter to work with older accessories.
Schiller says the new phone is 18% thinner than the iPhone 4S and 20% lighter. The screen is 4 inches diagonally, which makes room for another row of apps.
It will have a battery with eight hours of talk time and eight hours of web browsing.
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Sales of Apple’s previous generation iPhones are still strong, though the company lost the lead in smartphones to Samsung this year.
Samsung Electronics Co. benefited from having its Galaxy S III, while Apple was still selling an iPhone model it released last October.
The iPhone 5 presents a formidable threat to RIM, though.
Once known as Canada’s high-tech heavyweight, RIM has been working to turn around its operations as consumers switched to the iPhone and other smartphones.
The company’s future success rides on the unveiling of its BlackBerry 10 operating system, which has suffered two major delays.
Apple is also releasing a new version of its phone software, iOS 6. It will have new mapping software with turn-by-turn voice navigation—a feature Google had limited to Android versions of its mapping app.
Apple says the phone’s virtual assistant, Siri, will give you directions. So, you’ll have as little help making it to those offsite client meetings and lunches.
The new phone software also promises enhancement to email. You can deem certain people as VIPs and flag their emails. It will also offer a better tie-in with Facebook. You can talk to Siri to post a status update, for example.