An Amalgamation of Reviews

Yesterday, Apple lifted the press embargo on both iPhone and iOS 7 reviews in conjunction with the operating system’s release to the general public. Like most of the internet, I got little to no work done once the reviews and new apps started rolling out. I did, however, succeed in pulling together this list and brief overview of the best reviews I came across throughout the day, for your reading pleasure.

John Gruber: [*The iPhone 5S and 5C*](http://daringfireball.net/2013/09/the_iphone_5s_and_5c)

Right off the bat, John opened with a four paragraph-long footnote presenting the logical argument against Apple’s new naming convention. I particularly enjoyed this portion of the review. With the stylistic issues out of the way, John began the article by explaining the reality of the iPhone 5C as a repackaged and rebranded iPhone 5, a topic I and others have beaten to death over the past week. Despite the opinion’s prevalence now, I drew some satisfaction seeing it come from John as well. Then he tackled the notion that Apple can no longer innovate under Tim Cook. This topic obviously bothers him, and it showed through in his writing before he moved on to talk specific aspects of the new devices.

First, he explained the logic behind Apple’s move to a 64bit architecture. I still can’t quite say I fully understand the reasons behind this transition, but after reading John’s explanation I at least have some idea and enough knowledge to recognize the move as a very forward-thinking one. This topic conveniently transitioned in to a discussion of the 5S’s speed — unsurprisingly, a massive increase: on par with John’s 2008 MacBook Pro, in fact — and battery life which, despite the significant performance jump, still managed to increase ever so slightly over the 5. John then moved on to talk about Touch ID and the camera before closing his article and putting the final nail in the “Apple can’t innovate” argument.

Shawn Blanc said it best when he linked to John Gruber’s review of the new iPhones: “This is Daring Fireball at its best — technical, thoughtful, and fun.” I couldn’t agree more; it was for this kind of article that I subscribed to John Gruber’s blog, and he did not disappoint.

If you only read one device review today, let it be this one.

Jim Dalrymple: [*Review: iPhone 5c and 5s*](http://www.loopinsight.com/2013/09/17/review-iphone-5c-and-iphone-5s/)

Whereas John approached his review from a more technical standpoint and peppered the piece with personal anecdotes, Jim took the opposite route and wrote entirely based on his own experience with the devices. Personally, I prefer the former to the latter. That’s not to say, though, that there is no merit to Jim’s review: unlike John Gruber, who chose to talk about the 5S to the exclusion of the 5C as a technically similar device to the 5, Jim gave the 5C a fair amount of thought and “airtime”, if you will. Jim also devoted a portion of his article to iOS 7, a topic John Gruber has yet to write about in this capacity.

Federico Viticci: [*Living with iOS 7*](http://www.macstories.net/stories/living-with-ios-7/)

If you read John’s article reviewing the iPhone 5S and 5C but met its end with disappointment at no mention of iOS 7, or wanted more detail than Jim put forth in his review, Federico Viticci wrote a fantastic(ally long) piece wholly devoted to the latest iteration of Apple’s mobile operating system in which he discussed, in exhaustive detail, every app, screen, desntion, convention, and paradigm present throughout iOS 7, all the way down to the reasons Apple’s designers made the choices they did. In particular, I found Federico’s penultimate section, “Stability, Polish, and iPad”, especially interesting given his thoughts regarding the suitability of iOS 7 on an iPhone versus an iPad, only rivaled in his conclusion during which Federico looked forward to the future of Apple’s mobile operating system and app ecosystem alike. Unsurprisingly, Federico’s piece is one of the best articles about iOS 7 on the internet.

Rene Ritchie: [*iOS 7 review*](http://www.imore.com/ios-7-review)

Right alongside Federico’s article, however, we have Rene Ritchie of iMore with his review of iOS 7. Essentially, Rene’s article is to Federico’s what John Gruber’s iPhone 5S review is to Jim Dalrymple’s: whereas John took a quantitative approach, choosing to base his review on the technical details supplemented by his own opinions and trademark whit, Jim wrote from a more qualitative standpoint in chronicling his personal experiences with the new iPhones. In the context of these two iOS 7 reviews Federico’s, which certainly covered every important aspect, also focused heavily on his own opinions, whereas Rene based his in cold, hard facts supplemented with his own thoughts. So while both pieces are inarguably excellent, they are, nevertheless, geared towards two different audiences much as John and Jim’s reviews are.

Interestingly, Rene made no mention of stability — or lack thereof — in iOS 7 on either the iPhone or the iPad.

AnandTech's Lal Shimpi: [*The iPhone 5s Review*](http://www.anandtech.com/show/7335/the-iphone-5s-review)

After seeing both John Gruber and Jim Dalrymple link to this review, I went in to it with high expectations. Thirteen pages later, Lal Shimpi did not disappoint. While I did appreciate its depth, leaving quite literally nothing regarding the iPhone 5S untouched, it was extremely long, and much too long to read in a single sitting.

A great resource if you are looking for specific and highly-detailed information contained within one or two sections, but altogether overwhelming — to say the least — for anyone casually curious about Apple’s latest offering.

Now, having read every major review of both iOS 7 and the new iPhones, I feel I have appropriately prepared myself for what comes next: iOS 7 on my own devices, and a brand-new, “Space Gray” iPhone 5S in the coming weeks. I go into this fully expecting not to write any sort of review for either product. After all, in the face of these excellent articles, what else could I possibly say?