Sometimes it takes the cold sobering light of morning to know how you really feel about something (or someone). And so after taking almost 24 hours to let the effects of Apples' infamous reality distortion field wear off, I am ready to assess my feelings on the new iPhone. And the dominant feeling from the announcement yesterday is (drum roll please...) excitment.
In case you've been living under a rock for the last 24 hours, Apple announced the iPhone 4S yesterday. The iPhone 4S will have the same form factor as the iPhone 4 but have improved specs and a new Siri voice recognizing "assistant". For full recap of yesterday's announcement click here, and here.
I know that the internet is filled with people who are devastated by the lack of an iPhone 5. There also seem to be a lot of iPhone 4 haters coming out of the woodworks. On a side note, did you know that the phrase "coming out of the wordworks" is based on the idea of insects that suddenly come out from under boards in a house where they have been hidden? Now you know.
Don't get me wrong, I wanted to see an iPhone 5 as much as next guy (or gal), but I think the introduction of Siri is going to prove much more significant than most most people are realizing. And I think my iPhone 4 is still as beautiful as the day we met. I never look at it and think "I wish this screen were .5 inches bigger (when measured diagonally)."
When I look back at the first iPhone announcement, the thing that jumps out at me isn't how beautiful the phone was. The original iPhone was a beautiful phone, but so was the Motorola Razr. The thing that made the iPhone so revolutionary was its touchscreen and its user interface. I think that the integration of Siri is the biggest innovation in the iPhone since the touchscreen. Apple has once again redefined how people interact with their devices. When we look back at this announcement three years from now, we won't be thinking about the form factor of the 4S, we will be remember October 4th 2011 as the day Apple introduced voice recognition as a way of navigating your phone.
Apple's biggest mistake in their event yesterday, was managing our expecations. Had Apple announced the iPhone 4S at WWDC in June, like they had initially planned, no one would have been dissapointed. In June, everyone expected a 4S. But when Apple made us wait until October, everyone started got excited imaging the possibilities. The truth ended up being much less romantic: Apple simply delayed due to supply chain issues caused by the tsunami. Apple should not have been so secrative about what turned out to be a smaller than expected upgrade.
I will be lining up on October 14th to buy the new iPhone. Will you be there with me? Let me know what you think!