I've spent the past 3 days putting my new iPhone 5 through its paces and I can honestly say that this new device feels even more useful to me day-to-day.
I've always felt that the iPhone was a powerhouse of features crammed into an almost unbelievably small form, but this new version takes it to a whole new level because of one thing. Speed.
Though it isn't the most talked-about feature, in real-world use, the addition of LTE for data is a game changer. Although LTE has been available on other phones in other markets for a few months, the network was just turned on last Thursday here in Portland. I am able to get download and upload speeds while I'm downtown near my office that are superior to the best connection I've ever had on my Comcast Broadband connection at home over wifi. Dude. There literally isn't a wifi connection that I will likely come across that is faster than my data connection.
Though it would be easy to assume that data is the main difference, I'm noticing that the hardware is also significantly more capable. This morning before leaving the house, it crossed my mind that I didn't have a lot of music as I hadn't ever plugged into my Mac. I pulled up the iTunes store, and selected around 100 tracks to download from my purchased list. I figures that whatever didn't get loaded over wifi would trickle in over the day over data. I was wrong. All of those songs were loaded and ready to go within 7 minutes. Keep in mind that this is the same wifi router and know that I expected it to take 30 minutes or so because of the limitations of the hardware.
I really love the speed. I don't even consider whether my iPhone will actually open the video, or site because of its size or bandwidth requirements. Done.
One side effect- My battery is draining a bit faster than I'm used to because I'm doing things that just weren't possible before. Better get another Lightning cable.