Opinion: The only thing the iPhone 5 really needs

There's plenty of hype and speculation about the new iPhone, but all that really matters is that it gets 4G.

The iPhone 5 is coming! The iPhone 5 is coming! In case youve been in a coma the last day or two, Apple has sent out invites to the media for an event next week, which is all but guaranteed to be the official unveiling of the highly anticipated iPhone 5.

As with any new iPhone - or anything else Apple makes for that matter - there has been an abundance of rumors, hype, and speculation. Analysts and pundits have been making predictions about the next iteration of the Apple smartphone since the day the iPhone 4S hit the street.

It might be slightly larger stretching the display to four inches according to some sources. There is rampant speculation that Apple will introduce a new, smaller dock connector. The new iPhone may or may not include NFC (near field communications) capabilities.

When push comes to shove, though, there is only one feature that really matters: 4G / LTE.

Would it be nice to have a larger display? Meh. Personally, I like the fact that the iPhone has maintained a reasonable display size despite the race by rival smartphones to see which device can use the most grotesquely large screen and still be classified as a smartphone. Some like the Samsung Galaxy Notehave crossed the line and created a whole new classification called phablets.

Am I looking forward to a smaller dock connector? Not really. Of course, I'm also not freaking out about the possibility or cursing Apple for having the audacity to switch up connectors once every decade or so. More than the size of the connector itself, Id like to see Apple develop higher quality cables that dont crack and fray so easily.

Basically, the iPhone 4S is great just the way it i - except for the lack of 4G. This is an even bigger concern for Verizon or Sprint customers. AT&T at least has HSPA+, which is technically 3G but billed as 4G-ish by AT&T and T-Mobile. The 3G speed on a GSM network is significantly faster than the painfully, mind-numbingly slow 3G provided by Verizon.

I switched from AT&T to Verizon because AT&Ts signal is so flaky and unreliable in my area that I often couldn't make or receive phone calls. My service with Verizon is substantially better in that regard, but every time I want to do anything data related from my iPhone I regret making the switch. However, my 4G iPad gets blazing fast data speed from Verizon.

Im not sure what to expect when Apple pulls back the curtain to reveal the next generation iPhone next week. All I know is that if it doesnt have 4G, I dont care. And, if it does have 4G, that's all that matters and you can sign me up for my pre-order right now.

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Tony Bradley

PC World (US online)
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