The excitement over the shipment of the iPhone 4S has been building for 10 days. The smartphone, which is expected to launch on Oct. 14, features the same goodies as its predecessor, the iPhone 4, such as the Retina Display, along with a host of improvements, including a dual-core processor, faster downlink speeds on AT&T’s network and a better camera. Plus, it starts at $199, which matches the price of the iPhone 4’s cheapest model when that device launched last year.
So far,consumers have voted with their wallets on the iPhone 4S, with Apple claiming a sellout of preorders and a new single-day record on that front. To say that the device will be a top-seller after it launches is perhaps an understatement.
However, whether or not consumers should opt to buy the iPhone 4S now is another question. Sure, it looks like a fine purchase, and over time it might be ideal for just about everyone. But is it really best to be an early adopter at this point? Probably not.
Read on to find out whybuying the iPhone 4S right now isn’t such a good idea:
1. It’s an early adopters’ game
The iPhone 4S is undoubtedly a fine-looking product with some neat features. But buying the device at launch is for early adopters. Those folks like to buy products as soon as they’re out, no matter how good they are. Sometimes, they benefit from that. But in other cases, they don’t. Being an early adopter has its risks and isn’t always the best idea.
2. Waiting on the iPhone 5
Prior to the announcement of the iPhone 4S, there was some speculation that Apple would launch the iPhone 5. But it didn’t. And now the rumor mill is trying to determine when it might do so. At this point, there’s no telling. But chances are, it should come out sooner rather than later. With that in mind, you might want to hold off on buying the iPhone 4S so you’re not locked into a two-year deal when the iPhone 5 launches.
3. What will Samsung and Google show off?
Samsung and Google are planning to hold a special event this month to show off the Galaxy Nexus, a smartphone that many believe could be the best answer yet to the iPhone 4S. Will that device actually be a worthwhile competitor? It’s certainly possible. So, why not wait to see what the companies show off before deciding to buy the iPhone 4S?
4. Let the iPhone 4 run its course
Prior to the announcement of the iPhone 4S, just about everyone agreed that the iPhone 4 was the best product on the market. Why should customers who were thinking about buying that device turn their back on it now, especially considering it’s so much cheaper? Plus, those who own the iPhone 4really have no reason to ditch that device, since it’s running iOS 5 and the iPhone 4S doesn’t offer all that much in the way of improvements. At this point, it might be better to let the iPhone 4 run its course.
Wait for the Reviews
5. See how Sprint’s network handles the iPhone
For those looking to buy the iPhone 4S on Sprint’s network, it might be a good idea to wait and see what happens. As history has proved, carriers have trouble handling the data load that the iPhone brings to their networks. It might be a good idea to wait to see how Sprint’s network performs before jumping on the iPhone 4S.
6. Wait for the reviews
As noted, there are early adopters who buy devices without even thinking twice about looking at reviews of a product. But for the majority of folks, that’s not such a good idea. Instead, those customers should wait to hear the reviews of the iPhone 4S to determine if the smartphone is right for them.
7. A year from now, it’ll be cheaper
Over the last few years,Apple has made its prior-year iPhone launch available at a discounted price to customers. Some consumers who would like to buy the iPhone 4S but don’t want to pay the $199 and up for the smartphone might think about waiting until next year. Sure, it’ll be replaced with the iPhone 5 by then, but who cares? It’ll be cheaper.
8. Remember: Prices are only with two-year agreements
As noted, the iPhone 4S starts at $199 for 16GB of storage. The 32GB and 64GB models are available for $299 and $399, respectively. However, it’s important to remember that those prices are only for customers who enter into a two-year agreement and buy locked phones. The iPhone 4, on the other hand, goes for just $99. And the iPhone 3GS is available for free. Keep that in mind before making a decision to buy the iPhone 4S.
9. Wondering about Apple’s future
Although it’s a safe bet that the iPhone 4S is a solid option for most customers, there might be some out there who might balk at the idea of buying Apple’s latest handset because of concerns over the company’s future. Apple’s co-founder Steve Jobs has passed away and will no longer be able to influence the company. Tim Cook, Apple’s current CEO, is unproven. Maybe it’s worth it to see where Apple goes in the next couple months before making a decision on the iPhone 4S.
10. Expect some iOS 5 quirks
Aside from the hardware, buying an iPhone 4S out of the box means consumers will be using a device running the very first version of the company’s new operating system, iOS 5. I had the chance to take the beta versions for a spin, and they worked well. But there’s no telling what the final build will be like. As with any new iOS version, there are bound to be some quirks. And customers who wait for Apple to fix those issues could be the smartest buyers of all.