(Photo : Reuters)
While the iPhone 5 is being celebrated by reviewers as a stellar refinement to Apple's recipe, critics almost universally expressed concern about the removal of a 30-pin connector from the device. Dubbed "Lightning," the new connector will require consumers to buy an extra $30 adapter in order to attach any iPhone accessory that is currently on the market to the iPhone 5.
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Engadget writes, "Lightning comes up short in a number of important areas. It is, of course, incomparable with the roughly 350 million billion iPhone and iPod accessories currently on the market-a problem mostly rectified by a $30 adapter. But, that's not the perfect solution, as even that won't support iPod Out, the specification used in some cars (notably BMW and Mini) to enable in-dash control of an iPod or iPhone."
The New York Times praises Lightning as being "the very model of a modern major connector," but notes that "you could easily pay $150 in adapters for a $200 phone. That's not just a slap in the face to loyal customers-it's a jab in the eye."
"Even with the adapter, not all accessories work with the Lightning, and not all the features of the old connector are available; for example, you can't send the iPhone's video out to a TV cable," the site adds.
The iPhone 5's "only real misstep was the confirmation of the new Lightning dock connector. Until now, the iPhone has shared the same 30-pin adapter used by the very first iPod over a decade ago," says the Mirror's Dan Silver. "And no matter how Apple attempts to spin the benefits of this smaller version-it's completely digital! It's more durable! It works both ways up! - the unavoidable truth is that users will now have to buy a new raft of accessories. Or at least shell out for one converter in order to carry on using the old ones."
Aside from the Lightning connector, the iPhone 5's features and design have garnered praise. Engadget calls the Apple device "without a doubt the best iPhone yet," labeling it "a hallmark in design." CNET stated that "the iPhone 5 adds everything we wanted in the iPhone 4S: 4G LTE, a longer, larger screen, and a faster A6 processor. Plus, its top-to-bottom redesign is sharp, slim, and feather-light."
The iPhone 5 launches on September 21, 2012.