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iPhone 4 – Love and Hate in a Glass Box

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Any kind of discussion about one of Apple’s iPhones has always been the seed of a bit of controversy. As it is with any relationship, the experience of owning an iPhone gives you a mixed feeling of love and hate. The same applies for the last product in the line, the iPhone 4.

Similar to other pieces of Apple hardware, the iPhone 4 did not go unnoticed. With news pieces being published and discussed over and over, exaggerated rumors being thrown around and a constantly growing base of followers rallying in favor of the iPhone cause, the event was anything but discreet. And why would it have been so? The phone itself is something that is designed to stand out, be looked at, and admired.

Design and feel

The first thing you notice when taking it out of the box is its brand new look. No more rounded edges or plastic surfaces like the old 3GS had, instead a novel industrial design took its fair share. The phone case is made up of two reinforced glass surfaces and a stainless steel band tightly wound around the sides. The result is a phone case that will make you hold it in your hand just to look at it with a big smile on your face.

But after a while you get to notice the finger marks which really show on its spotless surface. With time, small dents will also show their ugly faces, and the glass surface makes each and every one of them stand out like a brand new and striking blemish mark on your face in the morning.

That’s when the thought of getting some sort of protective material comes into mind, and acquiring one of the best iPhone cases available is somewhat of a necessity if you want to keep your iPhone looking flawless.

Functional improvements

The second thing to do with the iPhone is to power it up, and that is when you notice the new display. While having the same size as the old 3GS, 3.5 inches, the new “Retina Display”, as Apple chose to call it, is an LED backlit screen with a resolution of 960×640 pixels.

Combine that with a 326ppi pixel density and a 800:1 contrast ratio and you will come to understand why you’re both charmed and amazed at how smooth the textures are. All of these new tweaks will offer you the clearest, most well defined image available on a smart phone display. With the help of the new A4 chip that’s also used for the iPad, eye candy is not all you’ll get, as being able to swiftly and easily access your phone menu and applications is another major plus of the iPhone 4.

Moreover, you will love your phone once again, even as you ignore those stubborn fingerprints that keep showing up on your display.

Further on you will take note of many other impressive changes. The camera, an area that has not been one of Apples’ strongest points with previous models, is now placed on the back of the phone, and this time has a decent 5 megapixels. The front side sports a VGA camera that you can put to good use through the new Face Time video chatting feature. With these great features you can now take good quality photos anywhere you are. The new iPhone 4 accessories that come with the phone are also worth mentioning: a stylish dock and a varied selection of protective bumpers.

Some good level of work seems to have been put into call quality. The noise canceling abilities make for a better, clearer sound. Mix that with the improved battery life, which this time seems to go over 30 hours, and you can chat as long as you want. That is if you get a good signal, because sometimes your new phone will be picky about the way you hold your hand in front of the antenna or about how you put it in the pocket of your trousers, and it may decide to drop a few bars off that precious signal.

In addition, multitasking capabilities have greatly improved. Now third party applications can run in the background, or at least appear to do so as background access is still not fully allowed. Love and hate again, you just can’t shake that feeling off.

So, what does using an iPhone 4 feel like in the end? It is up to each and every one of us to decide whether that which makes us like it can make up for its downsides. I know I find myself reaching for it even when I don’t actually need to, and even in spite of the fact that I had just put it aside, annoyed by one of its mishaps!

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