Gizmodo finds iPhone 4G? Let's hope not

If Gizmodo's alleged iPhone 4G is the real deal it suggests Apple is taking a step backwards in product design.

Let's assume that Gizmodo's blurry and leaked photos of Apple's alleged iPhone 4G are the real thing. If so, Apple appears to be taking a step backwards in product design. From what I can tell of Gizmodo's alleged iPhone 4G phone it is a complete design departure from previous iPhones, and a poor one at that.

Gizmodo Editor Jason Chen wrote that the supposed iPhone 4G was "found lost in a bar in Redwood City, camouflaged to look like an iPhone 3GS." He didn't say how Gizmodo got a hold of the phone.

The most striking thing about Gizmodo's iPhone 4G is that the rounded edges of previous versions are gone, replaced with a flat back panel, possibly covered in glass, and surrounded in a brushed aluminum trim.

That's a puzzling design, because hard edges are not that comfortable to hold. Take an existing iPhone and hold it face down, with the edges of the glass against your hand. It feels weird, especially compared to how the phone's rounded edges rest in a cupped palm. Don't have an iPhone to test? Just look at every smartphone on the market, and try to find one with no rounded edges on the sides. Even the decidedly tougher Motorola Droid tapers off in the back.

Let's forget about ergonomics for a moment and talk about aesthetics. What's with the broken pieces of aluminum that comprise the trim around the sides of the phone? It's uncharacteristic of Apple, whose iPad and MacBooks use single sheets of aluminum for each segment, with holes punched for inputs and buttons. I agree with the assessment of John Gruber at Daring Fireball, who believes the design is a prototype iPhone that may change before the phone reaches consumers' hands. I just hope the whole thing looks a lot different.

That said, I'm less skeptical of the technical specs that Gizmodo uncovered: A front-facing video camera, camera flash, a higher-resolution display, a secondary mic for noise cancellation and Micro-SIM support instead of a full-sized SIM slot. Those are all logical and expected improvements to bring Apple up to speed with the competition.

But housing all those improvements in a phone with no curves seems like a step backwards.

Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags AppleiPhone 4GiPhonesmartphones

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Jared Newman

PC World (US online)
Show Comments

Essentials

Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive

Learn more >

Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop

Learn more >

Mobile

Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive 

Learn more >

Exec

HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450

Learn more >

Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive 

Learn more >

Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards 

Learn more >

Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones

Learn more >

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?