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Buying An iPhone 5? Prepare For Some Changes On The Road

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Yesterday, Apple unveiled one of the worst-kept secrets in the tech world: the all-new iPhone 5. Rumors about the device and leaked photos of its casing have been flooding the internet for months, and now most, if not all of them, have been confirmed.

But apart from the iPhone 5's longer -- and some would say, less elegant -- silhouette, what changes will it bring? There are at least five major changes that drivers should expect.

Goodbye, Google Maps

As we reported back in June, Apple's new mobile operating system, iOS6, will kill off Google Maps as the iPhone's pre-installed map application. (You'll still be able to use Google Maps on your iPhone, but you'll need to download the app from iTunes, and so far as we know, there's no way to make it the smartphone's default mapping application. Click on a map link in your email, and it'll open in the new Apple Maps.)

That's a pretty big risk for Apple. After all, Google Maps has been in development for years, and people have become very familiar with its functions -- even its quirks. Apple Maps will need to be spectacular right out of the gate, or Apple could see a substantial backlash.

Hello Waze, Yelp, TomTom

When we first heard about Apple Maps, we feared for the future of some of our favorite navigation apps. After all, if Apple Maps became the go-to app for getting from Point A to Point B, what would that mean for fun, gamified apps like Waze?

We're happy and intrigued to report, however, that Waze, Yelp, and TomTom will all be integrated into Apple Maps. According to Mashable, Apple Maps will incorporate real-time traffic data from Waze, turn-by-turn navigation from TomTom, and point-of-interest features from Yelp. Hooray for collaboration and synergy.

"Do Not Disturb"

As we mentioned in June, iOS6 will incorporate a new "Do Not Disturb" feature. Though details are still a bit fuzzy on how this will work in practice, it appears that "Do Not Disturb" will function like DriveSafe.ly or other distracted-driving apps: when the iPhone's accelerometer determines that the device (and its owner) are moving at a certain speed, it will slip into "Do Not Disturb" mode, silencing alerts and keeping the iPhone's screen black. "Do Not Disturb" probably won't be as robust as other distracted-driving apps, but it's nice to see this functionality built in.

Adapt to reuse

Anyone who's ever owned a Mac laptop is well aware of the company's endless array of dongles. Rather than sticking with common VGA and HDMI ports, Apple creates its own proprietary ports, then charges customers for adapters ("dongles") to connect those ports to projectors, TVs, and other accessories.

Now, it appears the iPhone has jumped on the dongle bandwagon. Gone is the iPhone's familiar 30-pin connector -- clunky though it was -- and now we have the much smaller, completely unique "Lightning" connector. Drivers who listen to tunes on their iPhone using a 30-pin cable (or who like to charge their phone in the car) will still be able to do so, but they'll have to shell out $30 for an adapter.

Why Apple couldn't have included a far-more-common micro-USB port remains a mystery.

Upside-down

Perhaps most frustratingly of all, Apple has moved the headphone jack to the bottom of the phone. For those who connect their iPhone to a car stereo via an auxiliary cable, that could make things complicated. You won't be able to rest the iPhone in a cupholder anymore, unless you're willing to rest it upside-down, which seems like an unnecessary distraction. Perhaps it's time to invest in a dock that attaches to your dashboard.

Do you plan to purchase an iPhone 5? Do these changes concern you? Or are you just happy to get your hands on Apple's newest, shiniest, lightest gadget? Let us know in the comments below.

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Comments (12)
  1. No, Apple lost me on this change to the iphone. The new mac book pro has a bad enough charger connection..... ALL just to Stick it to the consumer based on greed.... Romney would love these greedy &1!!##@*^s. They see the consumers as just another person to shaft and stick them for more $$s.
    Bad as banks and credit card companies..
    I do not consider Apple an American Company anymore....they have no loyalty to America or its citizens. Jobs overseas, not here where they want to pretend that they are for America and its citizens.
    I will stick with Android phones and PCs in the future.
    Apple products are not in my future, anymore.
     
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  2. And where do you think your Androids and PCs are made? The only thing American about them is the "inspiration" they stole from Apple. All of Apple's designs are from America.

    As for connectors and adapters, Apple changed the connector once in 10 years - it has been there since almost the beginning of the iPod line. How is that greed and ripping off the customer? Anyway, with cloud services, wi-fi and email, who needs these adapters?

    As for the rest of this article, claiming things are a mystery just shows laziness in reporting. Look into it rather than just throw out such comments. USB needs to be driven and interpreted to do things. Apple's system provides a more direct connection with dedicated pins, etc.
     
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  3. BUT APPLE PRODUCTS ARE MY ULTIMATE FUTURE, SO I'M STICKING WITH THE IPHONE 5! APPLE WON, ANDROID ANS SAMSUNG LOST! IT'S OVER!!!
     
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  4. Android phones and PCs! The clearly not "american" and I'll guarantee you Apple employes more folks in this country than makers of other phones and PCs. I don't know why the charger connection changed but it did. Not only will Apple make money on adapters but so will every other aftermarket gadget maker, e.g., Bose, et al. Business is business. I suppose you don't buy anyone's cars either cause they change them every year? Dang! Ford gave the new Mustang 10 more HP. Never buying one of those again!
     
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  5. These articles always give other phone makers a free hit. Now there are two connectors: Apple's system (and its Samsung copies) and Android's system. Prior to this every phone had its own unique connector, computer software and accessories. Is that what people want to go back to? Or a once every 10 years change in a connector and a readily available adapter rather than being forced to buy all new accessories.

    As for the comment about the headphone jack - have you even used an iPhone? The screen rotates when it is upside down, and always has. Why is this so complicated?
     
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  6. Tiby: My problem with Apple has less to do with the iPhone 5's change from the 30-pin plug to Lightning than with Apple's longstanding insistence on being entirely proprietary. Apple has created a closed system, and its unwillingness to deploy jacks that are now standard on countless other devices -- jacks like mini-USB and HDMI -- makes it seem as if Apple's being stubborn for stubbornness' sake.

    As for the headphone question: yes, I've used the iPhone since it debuted in 2007. And yes, some apps do rotate, but typically only from side to side, not top to bottom, as you imply. If an iPhone 5 is upside-down, the home screen, iTunes, the phone app, and most other apps will be upside-down, too.
     
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  7. Personally, I like the fact that Apple's systems are proprietary. It keeps the riff raft from messing with it. Most folks just want stuff to work and could care less about messing with the innards of things. Apple is unquestionably NOT perfect, but in my experience, it works. PCs and MS was fine when I worked and had a staff of 200+ systems folks to fix things when the "blue screen of death" showed its ugly countenance.
     
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  8. I take your point, but remember the dock connector was much more than a USB connector. There are dedicated pins for all sorts of things including Firewire, video, audio, device control, etc. USB needs a controller to convert signals into the desired outcome. The Apple system was more efficient. The Lightning connector has simply cut away some of the legacy pins but retains the same idea. Being reversible, it is also superior in physical use to USB or HDMI.

    If Apple was to follow what was popular, they would not have pushed the use of USB deprecating serial, PS2 and SCSI ports. Accessory makers have had no trouble adapting to the connector.

    Apologies about the rotation. Best not to look at a phone in a cupholder whiled driving though.
     
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  9. Apple is like the hated mother-in-law who nonetheless cooks a mean meal. You bite your tongue and chow down on what is set before you.
    Apple does give you a product with some nice features, but at the same time blatantly manipulates the consumer into slavishly drooling over their next “latest & greatest” model. They produce products intentionally “down-featured” with inferior built in cameras, withheld software features, etc. that they can easily “Improve” to make the next model more attractive. They also are infamous for coming out with ‘new’ operating system variations that demand software apps that are not backward-compatible with their previous OSes, gradually rendering the preceding model totally obsolete.
    Just business, I guess.
     
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  10. Wow. Just Wow. Apple releases one new phone a year (sometimes longer than a year) and one new mobile OS a year, which supports most previous models. iOS5 was not supported on the iPhone 3G - a 2008 model, but is supported on all other iPhones models. Second hand iPhones sell for hundreds of dollars. Name one other company that can do that.

    Samsung releases over 30 new smartphones every year, all with new "features" that may or may not be properly implemented. Apple (generally) introduces features when they are mature and ready for the best customer experience.

    As for Apple manipulating - how? Advertising - normal business. The hype is from the media trying to guess the next Apple innovation.
     
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  11. The biggest disappointment I have with the iPhone is NFC. With that being said, this article talks about some things that just are part of the Apple Ecosystem and shouldn't affect anyone else besides those who've adopted Apple and its products. A previous "commentor" said it best. Some people just want it to work and that's what Apple guarantees by having a closed ecosystem. Almost every third-party piece of hardware I've acquired for Apple products has either failed or faltered long before the device has.

    Let me touch base on the adapter argument. The only thing that is changing, is the iPhone interface, it still uses USB to connect to your computer/car. So if your car uses an iPhone specific adapter that's the only thing it affects.
     
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  12. If China raised minimum wage to $6/hour not a single one of you would be able to afford an iPhone, let alone a computer debate about it with. Buying a phone based on which company is "more American" is as idiotic as paying $30 for an adapter when mini USB cables that work with everything sells for a penny.

    That said, yes, Apple is firmly rooted in the U.S.- that's the only place they have a prayer according to Forbes' market share comparison. likely because its the only place 2 year contracts spread out the cost and make it less obvious that you're dropping $700 on a freaking phone. My rooted, unlocked, Galaxy s Blaze is far more capable and cost $250. If you're willing to spend $450 for the "apple experience" you deserve to be cheated.
     
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