I have had an iPhone since 2008. I have suffered hardware issues with micro-fractures, antenna-gate, and sticky Home buttons. I have endured software issues causing rapid battery consumption, alarm clock failures, Apple Maps, and loss of storage space (from automatically downloaded iOS updates). And most recently, I have seen the utility of my iPhone 4 plummet in combination with iOS 7. I can only assume that the new operating system was not fully tested on what was deemed to be an irrelevant device. User inputs and application transitions are unacceptably laggy, with each day compounding the annoyance. It also took Bluetooth integration (with my new Alpine car stereo) several steps backward.
For almost a year now I have been out-of-contract with AT&T. Why didn’t I get the iPhone 5? Like many people, I expected a device with a larger screen. One that would make reading easier on the eyes, and easier on the pocketbook (compared with the redundancy in having both an iPhone and an iPad). Because AT&T doesn’t reduce your service charges when out of contract, this means I have been directly subsidizing their profit, or indirectly subsidizing the device upgrades of others to the tune of $225/yr (half the $450 difference between iPhone 5S 2-yr contract/no-contract prices).
Now you have “released” (I use in the loosest sense of the word) an updated device (the 5S) that I simply have to get because a 3 year old smartphone is subjectively 10x less useful than a 5 year old desktop computer. You didn’t pay attention to my need for a larger screen, and instead split development between an expensive replacement (5S) available in a new, gaudy color, and a slightly less expensive replacement (5c); of which reports indicate you are ramping down production. I’ll bet a non-trivial contingent of users avoided the 5c because you did not explicitly discuss how the micro-fracture issues from the 3G/3G S had been resolved for the 5c. Furthermore, while I expected 32/64/128 GB capacity, you only delivered 16/32/64 GB despite a continued loss of capacity available for user storage from OS bloat.
Why didn’t I pre-order the 5S? I couldn’t! You only allowed pre-orders of the 5c. Being the busy professional whose productivity is increased by technology, I wouldn’t suffer the ignominy of waiting in line for the first batch (which typically has an increased rate of manufacturing defects you hesitate to acknowledge publicly, but for which your stores readily replace). Why don’t I order one now to be assured a place in the virtual queue? I’m grandfathered in to an unlimited plan with AT&T, which is the only reason I stay with them. So to avoid any potential for a botched change in plan, I will only get my iPhone 5S through a retail outlet directly operated by AT&T.
Here’s the crux for me, my dad needs to take my carrier-unlocked iPhone 4 to Germany in early November as his iPhone 5 cannot be carrier-unlocked. Although the iPhone 5S doesn’t have a bigger screen and isn’t available with greater capacity, I need a new device. But here we are a month after the 9/20/2013 release date, and there aren’t any! (At Apple stores, or by way of extension, AT&T stores.)
Screenshot from http://iphone-check.herokuapp.com/
I enjoy Apple’s entertainment ecosystem: iTunes, AirPlay, AirPort Express (with its optical audio output), and iPhone with its Remote app. But I also have three other devices (PC, Xbox 360, PS3) connected to an HDTV that are capable of substituting parts of that ecosystem, and my Apple Lossless files can be readily converted to WMA Lossless or FLAC.
Unless I can find an iPhone 5S before 11/6/13, you’ll lose a customer to Windows Phone and the capable Nokia Lumia 1020.