Apple’s ‘all new’ iPhone – the iPhone 4S - with voice recognition software was unveiled by Apple yesterday.
It was thought the iPhone 5 would be unveiled at the event at Apple’s Cupertino, California headquarters after press received an invite to a ‘special event’ called ‘Let’s talk iPhone’. But yesterday’s event instead saw Apple launch the iPhone 4S.
Apple senior vice president Phil Schiller said while the new phone looked similar to the previous iPhone4 and shared its glass front and back and trademark stainless steel band, “inside it’s all new”.
iPhone 4S has a new A5 chip inside which allows it to use much faster graphics for gameplay and download data twice as fast. Senior vice president of iPhone Software Scott Forstall showed off the voice recognition software during the launch, called Siri, which allows users to ask the phone questions and get answers. He said it works as "your humble, intelligent personal assistant that goes everywhere with you and can do anything for you just by asking".
Forstall said Siri understood the language and context of users' questions and then gave a series of examples by asking the phone about the weather, his diary and the stockmarkets."I've been in the AI field for a long time and this still blows me away."
The phone has an eight megapixel camera with five lenses, one more than the iPhone4, which will result in sharper pictures. It also allows users to take HD video.
Technology expert Ernest Doku of uSwitch.com said some people would be “bitterly disappointed” at the announcement of an upgraded phone rather than a brand new model.
“A phone which talks to you and answers your questions? That’s the iPhone 4S. Slightly disappointing from a hardware standpoint, but Siri has the potential to revolutionise how we use our mobiles.
“Apple is gambling that people will see this as a reinvention of the wheel.”
The iPhone 4S will go on sale in the UK and US on October 14. The 64 giga bytes phone will sell for $399 (£260), while the 32gb will go for $299, and the 16gb for $199.