Does the S in iPhone 5s mean better social for Social Media users?


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With the launch of the new iPhone 5s now including the latest iOS 7 platform and over 1 billion transistors all within its tiny 112 gram body… How does this phone stack up for social media users?

iPhone-5sFor my money there are a few quick wins. It is faster (arguably much faster with estimates ranging up to twice as fast as the iPhone 4); more secure with fingerprint security and the inclusion of a superior camera with really wizzy features.

A mobile app’s success is greatly determined by its ease of use, speed and performance. Apple has announced that the new iPhone 5s will have an A7 64-bit processor and an M7 motion detector – compared with the A5 chip in the iPhone 4. Reports state that the performance and speed have increased over 40 times from the first iPhone. ‘Now that sounds impressive!’ But how does this relate to the Social Media user? To answer this we need to look into the new features of the phone.

The iOS 7 platform is Apple’s new ‘totally rebuilt’ mobile operating system. Apple’s software engineering chief Craig Federighi has said “this is the most significant iOS update since the launch of the original iPhone.”

The next major change is the inclusion of Finger Print Identification. Now every social media champion can effectively block out their snooping partner from accessing their personal photos and contact information, and logging into your social media channels on your iPhone, as you. This has to be a good thing!

In this new iPhone, gone is the venerable and clunky four-digit pass-code lock, replaced the Touch ID Sensor. A tough, laser-cut sapphire crystal protecting the touch sensor, which takes a high-resolution image of your finger or thumbprint and intelligently analyses it to provide accurate readings from any angle, covers the home button. Fingerprint information is encrypted and not stored on any remote server. Instead it is stored securely in the Secure Enclave that is embedded inside the new A7 system-on-a-chip. This is where much of the new power of the iPhone 5s is provided.

I would think that the Touch ID could be a powerful tool in mobile purchases – once banks and retailers adopt it. Meantime, it can now be used to approve purchases from the iTunes Store, App Store or the iBooks Store.

But the feature that I think would be of greatest interest to social media users is the new iSight camera on the iPhone 5s. It is a monumental upgrade. It now offers 8 megapixels and the individual pixels are larger which means the camera should take better pictures in low-light situations. The flash also has been upgraded to what Apple calls “True Tone”. It has 2 x LED flashes with 2 different colours stacked on top of each other. With the True Tone flash, the phone triggers an initial flash that gauges the colours of the surrounding environment. Then the two flashes fire together in different intensities that adjust based on the light in the room. There are 1,000 flash combinations.

Of interest to Youtube’rs and people who create video, the video and camera are cited to be now good enough to be used commercially. On 12 September 2013 Burberry announced a partnership with Apple to use the new iPhone 5s as its official camera at its runway show being held today (Monday 16 September) in London. The fashion house says the new camera on the phone is so good it will allow Burberry to shoot video and photos of the runway scene and backstage to share with fans and consumers being able to watch live streams across Burberry social media channels and on their website. Expect to see a case study for convergent media and marketing when Burberry streams their live fashion show.

With all these improvements including increased speed and power, security and superior camera/video functionality, Apple has focused on the ‘Shoot More, Share More’ philosophy. As more users are posting more photos and videos online, Apple is certainly catering to those users though its added integration to Flickr and Vimeo with the iOS 7. Flickr integration will make it easier to share and save photos with a single click. With the new integration, we’ll probably see instant login-in options for a variety of App Store apps, like Instagram, using Flickr. I would image that both of these apps will see huge growth with the integration on Apples 5s.

When Apple launched its iOS 5 in 2011 it’s social network of choice was Twitter, and Apple fully integrated Twitter into the iOS simplifying the process of sharing photos, videos, and articles. As a direct result, Twitter signups immediately tripled. Then in 2012 with the launch of iOS 6, Apple integrated with Facebook – making it easier for users to share directly from their mobile devices. With the iSOs 7 there are further integrations, mainly with Safari and Twitter. Safari will feature Shared Links, a list of articles shared by people you follow on Twitter that are suggested by Apple and Twitter. Siri is getting Twitter integration as well, allowing users to verbally search what people are saying about topics and she (or he) will show users the resulting tweets. Siri will also be able to post directly to Twitter, giving users a hands-free social experience. With the new iOS, Twitter has also made its way into the new iTunes Radio, a Pandora-like service for Apple devices. The radio application features over 200 genre-focused stations, one of which—”Trending on Twitter”—plays the most popular songs on the social network.

What is the upshot of all of this?

For the social media savvy – the new iPhone 5s starts to stack up as being able to deliver more than just Apple hype. In a nutshell the faster processor provides significantly greater speed, makes your applications run faster, delivers more processing power and – yes – delivers better graphics! But what does this mean to you? It means you can access, download and upload videos much faster, and update all your social media feeds with greater feed. Add this to the better camera, with improved flash, 15% larger camera sensor than its predecessor, image stabilisation and a nifty little feature that takes multiple photos with each button press and then discards all but the best one – means your photos WILL be better!

Social media is a great platform for sharing images and videos and consumer’s are quick to click n’ post so the higher-quality camera on the iPhone 5s raises the competitive bar for consumers who will continue to show off more of the better-looking photos they can snap.

With the increased integration with social platforms, new integration with Flickr and Vimeo, and increased integration with Twitter, connecting to social media from your mobile is getting easier. For the social networks that support images, better-phone cameras mean more traffic, and more eyes for advertisers to get in front of. I personally am looking forward to the Apple iPhone 5s release and getting my hands on one – estimated sometime between end of September 2013 and early October 2013.

What app are you looking forward to engaging with on the new IPhone 5s?

Post by Bruce Grant, COO and IPhone enthusiast

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