Evolution is defined as any process of formation or growth; development: the evolution of a language; the evolution of the airplane, the evolution of the aviation industry, and dare I go any further the Evolution of the Daleks.
If Steve Jobs could rewrite this line he’d probably take on iPhone right at the end of that sentence.
We’ve all come to appreciate the intricacy and complexity used to bring us such a great tool: the Apple iPhone. Through the years we’ve also come to admire the beauty and simplicity of this incredible device.
The first iPhone was unveiled by Steve Jobs, then CEO of Apple, on January 9, 2007, and released on June 29, 2007.
- Quad-band Global System for Mobile Communications (GSM)
- General Packet Radio Service (GPRS)
- Enhanced Data Rates for GSM Evolution (EDGE).
The original iPhone no longer received software updates from Apple; its final official firmware version was iPhone OS 3.1.3
The original iPhone’s design was centered on a 3.5 inch glass multi-touch touchscreen display. It introduced five physical buttons that have remained consistent over newer generations of iPhone. The device featured a chrome plated metal frame the back of which was made of aluminum with a black plastic base, required because metal shields cellular and Wi-Fi signals.
The headphone socket was recessed into the frame making it almost impossible to use a standard headset without the use of an adapter. Other models do not have this issue.
Our next stop takes us to the 3G. The iPhone 3G was very similar to the original iPhone, but included several new hardware features, such as Assisted GPS, 3G data and tri-band UMTS/HSDPA. The iPhone 3 also benefited from software improvements in iPhone OS 2.0 (which was introduced alongside the iPhone 3G), which alongside other features (including Push email and turn-by-turn navigation), introduced the new App Store — Apple’s new distribution platform for third-party applications for the iPhone.
The iPhone 3G’s back featured redesigned plastic polycarbonate housing, replacing the aluminum back from the first generation. The buttons were also made from plastic to metal, and the edges of the phone were also tapered, providing a better grip of the phone. The iPhone 3G also introduced colors to the iPhone bringing black and white backs to the device. However only the 16GB version was available in both colors.
The dimensions of the iPhone 3G were slightly larger than those of the original iPhone. It was 4.55 inches (116 mm) high, 2.44 inches (62 mm) wide, and 0.48 inches (12 mm) deep, compared to its predecessor, which was 4.5 inches (110 mm) high, 2.4 inches (61 mm) wide, and 0.46 inches (12 mm) deep.
Unlike the original iPhone, the 3G and its successor the 3GS made it easier to replace the screen if it was the unfortunate victim of a straight drop to the ground.
The new features of the iPhone 3G[S] are mainly internal changes regarding speed, for which the “S” in “iPhone 3GS” stands. Though in addition to the upgrades mainly regarding performance, various software features were also introduced exclusive to the iPhone 3GS. All of the exclusive features were incorporated into the iPhone 4.
The LCD display on the device was designed by Apple and made by LG. It features a capacitive touchscreen with a pixel density of 163 pixels per inch (ppi) on a 3.5 in (8.9 cm) 480-by-320 display. Improvements over its predecessor’s screen include 24-bit color emulation (18-bit color display plus dithering) for a more color rich display and oleophobic coating to help reduce fingerprints on the display. The capacitive touchscreen is designed for a bare finger, or multiple fingers for multi-touch sensing.
The iPhone 3GS features an improved 3 megapixel camera manufactured by OmniVision. In addition to the higher megapixel count, it also features auto-focus, auto white balance and auto macro and is capable of capturing VGA video.
The iPhone 3GS’s Camera app features a slider which allows users to switch between capturing photos and recording videos, a tap-to-focus feature which allows users to tap on an area of the camera image to auto-focus on, 5x digital zoom (iOS 4 and 5), auto focus and auto exposure lock when holding an area down (iOS 5 only), and gridlines for composition (iOS 5 only).
Processor and memory
The iPhone 3GS is powered by the Samsung APL0298C05 chip, which was designed and manufactured by Samsung. This system-on-a-chip is composed of an ARM Cortex-A8 CPU core underclocked to 600 MHz (from 833 MHz), integrated with a PowerVR SGX 535 GPU.
It has 256 MB of eDRAM, twice the amount of the 3G, allowing for increased performance and multi-tasking.
Apple claims the iPhone 3GS is 2x faster than its predecessor, showing demonstrations of various apps loading in half the time its predecessor does.
New Bootrom and 2011 Baseband Update
On September 9, 2009, Apple launched an updated model of the iPhone 3GS that patched a segment overflow in the SecureROM of the Device that had allowed loading an unsigned LLB.
After the release of the iPhone 4S, Apple killed the unlock for the new iPhone 3GS devices that were produced after week 36th of 2011 by quietly updating its baseband hardware from a Infineon Baseband chip to a Toshiba Baseband chip. Although the new chip uses the same modem firmware as the Infineon chip, it cannot be updated to iPad baseband 06.15.00 that is still vulnerable to the AT+XAPP exploit.
After the release of the iPhone 4S, the 3GS was still offered for free until November 2011, when AT&T raised the price to 99 cents with no explanation as to why. The 99c price is only available with a two-year contract on AT&T in the United States and a three-year contract on Telus, Rogers,Bell and Fido Solutions in Canada. This is a departure from Apple’s previous trends, in which only two phones were sold.
There have been a few reports of users having lag on the 3GS running iOS 5. However, general consensus has shown that the performance on the 3GS has not been hit with iOS 5. In fact, Anandtech has reported a speed increase on the 3GS on iOS 5 versus iOS 4. In addition, a 3GS running iOS 5 has actually been benchmarked to be faster than an iPhone 4 running iOS 4 according to Anandtech as well.
The 3GS will support iOS 6, making it the first iPhone to support 4 iOS versions rather than 3.
The most noticeable difference between the iPhone 4 and its predecessors is the new design, which incorporates an uninsulated stainless steel frame that acts as the device’s antenna. The internal components of the device are situated between two panels of chemically strengthened aluminosilicate glass.It has an Apple A4 processor and 512 MB of eDRAM, twice that of its predecessor and four times that of the original iPhone. Its 3.5-inch (89 mm) LED backlit liquid crystal display with a 960×640 pixel resolution is marketed as the “Retina Display”.
When released the iPhone 4 used iOS 4. The latest version available is iOS 5.1.1 (May 2012).
The iPhone 4 features a redesigned structure, designed by Jonathan Ive. Most notably, the bulges of the back panel as well as the band between the front and back are gone and have been replaced with flattened surfaces. The redesign reflects the utilitarianism and uniformity of existing Apple products, such as the iPad and the iMac. The overall dimensions of the iPhone 4 have been reduced from its predecessor.
It is 4.53 inches (115 mm) high, 2.31 inches (59 mm) wide, and 0.37 inches (9.4 mm) deep, compared to the iPhone 3GS, which is 4.55 inches (116 mm) high, 2.44 inches (62 mm) wide, and 0.48 inches (12 mm) deep; making the iPhone 4.24% thinner than its predecessor, the iPhone 3GS. Steve Jobs claims that it is “the thinnest smartphone on the planet”. The reduced size of the device is primarily due to the externally placed antenna.
The iPhone 4 is structured around a stainless steel frame that wraps around the edge of the phone, acting both as the primary structure for the device and as the iPhone 4′s antennas. This metal band features two slits on the GSM version of the phone, one at the lower left, and one at the top (and a fake slit along the lower right, to cosmetically mirror the one at the lower left) that divide the band into two antenna sections: the left section of the band serves as the Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and GPS antenna, and the right and lower sections of the band act as the antenna for GSM and UMTS connectivity.
On the CDMA version of the phone there are four slits in the metal band. Two at the top (on the left and right) and two at the bottom. This divides the metal band into four different segments, which like the GSM version of the phone, serves as different antennas for connectivity. The top portion of the band (divided by the top left and right slits) is for connecting to the CDMA network. The left portion of the metal band is for Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and GPS just like the GSM version. The right side is not an antenna, but serves to cosmetically mirror the left side and also to create a similar look to the GSM version of the phone.
The internal components are situated between two panels of aluminosilicate glass, described by Apple as being “chemically strengthened to be 20 times stiffer and 30 times harder than plastic,” theoretically allowing it to be more scratch resistant and durable than the prior models.
In fall 2010, pentalobular screws started to replace the Philips screws used in post-repair units in the US and in production units in Japan.
The 4S uses the Apple A5 system-on-a-chip that uses an Imagination Technologies PowerVR SGX graphics processing unit, which features pixel, vertex, and geometry shader hardware, supporting OpenGL ES 2.0. The SGX543 is an improved version of the GPU used in the iPhone 4S’ predecessor, the iPhone 4. However, the iPhone 4S uses a dual-core model, the SGX543, that is integrated with the Apple A5 SoC in the same way as the iPad 2. Apple claims that the iPhone 4S can process graphics up to “seven times faster” than the iPhone 4 was corroborated by Epic Games president Mike Capps.
It has 512 MB of DDR2 RAM. Maximum available storage size increased to 64 GB whilst the 32 GB and 16 GB model options were retained. The screen is the same as the prior generation iPhones; 3.5 inches (89 mm), 640×960 resolution (Apple’s “retina” design). There was an improvement in interactive multimedia applications compared to its predecessor.
In both the iPhone 4 and 4S, the cellular (GSM) antenna is divided into two. Therefore, if the iPhone 4S is gripped in such a way as to attenuate one piece of the cellular antenna, the radio will switch to the other piece that isn’t being gripped. The iPhone 4S can support a maximum output theoretically of up to 14.4 Mbps with HSDPA+ (AT&T Only) as a result of an upgraded radio chip inside the phone, in addition to being a world phone, so both CDMA and GSM customers can roam internationally on GSM networks. It also supports Bluetooth 4.0.
The camera on the iPhone 4S, also known as an iSight camera, can take 8 megapixel photos (3264 by 2448 pixels) and record 1080p videos at up to 30 frames per second with upgraded quality (30% better clarity, 26% better white balance, color accuracy) due to an additional lens, IR filter, a wider f/2.4 aperture, and Image signal processor (built-in A5).
In iOS 5.1, the camera can be accessed directly from the lock screen, and the volume up button doubles as a shutter trigger. The built-in gyroscope is able to stabilize the camera while recording video. Other features of the camera are macro (for close up pictures) and faster capture including being able to take its first picture in 1.1 seconds and the next half a second later.
The iPhone 4S features a 3.5 inches (89 mm) 960 by 640 pixel multitouch Retina display. It has two volume buttons and a ring/silent switch on the left side. On the top left there is a 3.5 mm headphone jack and a microphone that is used for both noise cancellation during calls and when in speakerphone/FaceTime (video calling) mode. The lock/power button is situated on the top right edge of the device. The right side of the device has a SIM card slot. The bottom of the device features a speaker output on the right and a microphone input on the left with Apple’s proprietary 30-pin dock connector in the center. The iPhone 4S supports video out via AirPlay and various Apple A/V cables. Supported video formats include H.264 (1080p 30 fps max.), MPEG-4 video, and motion JPEG (M-JPEG).
In addition to user inputs, the device also has several sensors that give the phone information about its orientation and external conditions. These include a 3-axis gyrometer, an accelerometer, a proximity sensor, and an ambient light sensor. The iPhone 4S is stated to have 200 hours standby time (iPhone 4 300 hours), 8 hours talk time on 3G (iPhone 4–7 hours), 14 hours talk time on 2G, 6 hours 3G browsing, and 9 hours Wi-Fi browsing. Additionally, it can sustain up to 10 hours of video playback or 40 hours of audio playback.
Comparison between the GSM iPhone 4 hardware (top) and iPhone 4S hardware (bottom). Notice the repositioned stainless steel antennae which form the perimeter around the phone.
The iPhone 4S has a stainless steel, dual-antenna design. Apple redesigned the antenna in the iPhone 4S so that the cellular radio in the phone can alternate between two antennas, depending on which is sending/receiving the best signal. These two antennas form part of the stainless steel band that covers the sides of the iPhone 4 and 4S. The bands on the iPhone 4S are divided into four antennas: cellular, Bluetooth, GPS, and Wi-Fi.
The 4S features the same design as the iPhone 4, which was designed by Jonathan Ive. Most notably, the bulges of the back panel as well as the band between the front and back are gone and have been replaced with flattened surfaces. The redesign reflects the utilitarianism and uniformity of existing Apple products, such as the iPad and the iMac. The overall dimensions of the iPhone 4S are lower than that of the 3GS.
It is 4.53 inches (115 mm) high, 2.31 inches (59 mm) wide, and 0.37 inches (9.4 mm) deep, compared to the iPhone 3GS, which is 4.55 inches (116 mm) high, 2.44 inches (62 mm) wide, and 0.48 inches (12 mm) deep; making the iPhone 4.24% thinner than the 3GS. The internal components are situated between two panels of aluminosilicate glass, described by Apple as being “chemically strengthened to be 20 times stiffer and 30 times harder than plastic,” theoretically allowing it to be more scratch resistant and durable than the prior models.
Like what you read? Follow @MriOSDevices @Captjgvex