Pre-orders for the iPhone 5 begin today, but should you take the plunge? The answer is different for different people. The iPhone isn't for everyone. So here's my take on who should buy, and who should wait.
Who should buy:
--Those who are already invested in the Apple ecosystem. If your life is in the iCloud, your music is on iTunes and you don't go anywhere without white earbuds and a device that begins with the prefix 'i,' then this is a no-brainer. You're going to have to pony up some $30 for an adapter if you want to make life easier. Many cars, homes and hotels will have the old iPhone docks for a while. But the price isn't about to go down anytime soon. So why wait?
--Smartphone novices. Maybe you've finally started searching for a smartphone because you've got a child in college and you want to follow their every move on Twitter. Whatever your reason for finally leaping into the 21st century, the iPhone is an intuitive and user-friendly introduction to the world of smartphones. Novice on a budget? The iPhone 4S will do just fine then, and it's now a great buy at $99 on contract through Apple.
Who should wait:
--Windows users at work. There will surely be some overlap with the previous categories here, but the fact is that if you're on a Windows computer at work, you're unable to seamlessly integrate your digital life at work and at home. And for anyone who has to bring their work home with them, that can be a pain.
It's reason enough to wait and see whether the Nokia Lumia 920, whose release date may be up to two months away, will fit the bill. It's got wireless charging, the upcoming Windows 8 platform, Microsoft Office and a host of other features. If its predecessor is any indication, this may be the phone of the year.
Who should buy something else:
--Nexus 7 tablet devotees. Because this price-friendly touchscreen is a close second to the iPad (and better in some ways), it may continue to gain a following through the holidays. The iPhone 5 is probably going to be excellent, but not enough to justify switching between Android's Jelly Bean operation system and iOS 6 on a daily basis. Opt for an Android top-tier phone like the Samsung Galaxy S III instead.
--Speech recognition fans. Sorry, Siri. You're just too darn slow. If you regularly rely on voice-to-text capabilities, Apple's unchanged voice-recognition assistant just doesn't fit the bill. Android speech-to-text and Windows voice recognition is far better. So skip today's presale.
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