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This is What Happens when Skipping An iPhone Generation

Jun 16 2014, 9:12am CDT | by

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This is What Happens when Skipping An iPhone Generation

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This is What Happens when Skipping An iPhone Generation

I’ve been holding out on upgrading my iPhone, which is a GSM iPhone 4 with 32GB of storage.  I’ve lived through the whole iPhone 5 generation without succumbing to the hype, and now it appears that the iPhone 6 is coming within a few months (MacRumors describes the date on its site as “Fall 2014”).

So, as I’m at the point of limping across the finish line, having skipped an entire upgrade cycle (including the “S” variants of both 4 and 5), I can say that my existing rig did manage for the most part to make it through.  But the hardware is getting old and creaky.

My one regret is that I accepted the various OS upgrades.  The phone came with iOS 5 when I bought it in 2010, and I stopped cold in front of iOS 6 because it messed with Google Maps (removing it from the pole position and replacing it with the crappy Apple Maps, which is still apparently having issues).

Apple pestered me by way of the annoying settings-badge reminder, and I finally went for it.  Since then, I have had to copy addresses manually and drop them into Google Maps before going anywhere.  Gone, the days of just tapping an address and having my choice of maps come up.

But that wasn’t the worst of it, no.  Having taken the plunge once, I was less resistant to the next upgrade, the one to iOS 7, and that was truly a monumental error of judgment on my part.  Not only is the flat design much harder for an old guy like me to decipher, but, far worse, the latest edition is much heavier-weight than previous ones.  It just blew away my phone’s memory.  iOS 7 was designed for faster hardware.

So, effectively everything on the old 4 is laggy now.  The whole interface is slow.  I can almost count the clock cycles behind every swipe.  Just the simplest things: touch it, and the registration occurs, but sometimes seconds later, and certain apps like just blow up when, for example, I pinch the weather map to show a wider horizon, perhaps taking in a larger dataset temporarily.  It simply craps, and I have to start all over again.  So, my ability to forecast weather is, *cough*, a bit impaired.

Be that as it may, the iPhone 4 has done yeoman service, having made it to the hairy edge of functional usefulness.  If you’ve read this far, you might be asking, what is this guy’s problem?  Why doesn’t he just bite the bullet and upgrade like the rest of us?

And the answer would be: I like to get my money’s worth.  Four years seems like the right amount of time to keep a piece of hardware.  And I only have to wait a few more months for the new one.

But I can tell you, I won’t be among those forming any queues for the iPhone 6.  I’m always trailing edge with respect to new purchases.  Let the brave ones go first, and I’ll watch what happens to them.  And I hate standing in line anywhere, whether in the supermarket or outside the Apple store.  My friend Tony Locke once said, “People who stand in line deserve to,” and ever since I’ve been struggling to balance my desire for new stuff with not wanting to look like a fool.

So, I’ll let a little bit of time go by and then dip in and get a faster system that can run the larger software, and hopefully my experience will improve.

Twitter: RogerKay


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