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The Apple iPhone 5 has arrived! Is it worth the hype?

Apple Introduces iPhone 5

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Apple introduces the iPhone 5 in San Francisco. Did it live up to the hype?

Apple is still in the process of running through various product updates and rollouts in San Francisco, but the marquee event — the reveal of the all-new iPhone 5 — has concluded. The verdict: Apart from a modest change in the design and some improvements in speed and battery life, this is not a radically new smartphone. Here's a quick summary:

The new connector is the most controversial thing about the iPhone 5. Basically, Apple is replacing the familiar connector that was borrowed from the iPod eight years ago with a new, smaller connector. This is to make room inside the taller, thinner iPhone 5. But it strands the iNation with a bajillion connectors and chargers that have been amassed over the better part of a decade. Apple says it will provide an adapter, called "Lightning," for something like $15, but you know how it goes with fiddly little things like that. Apple better sell them in six-packs.

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Debate hath ended: iTV coming from Apple this year

Apple's New iPhone 4s Goes On Sale

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Coming soon to an Apple Store near you: iTV?

Will they or won't they? That's been the burning debate in tech/Appleology circles over whether Cupertino will roll out a high-end, thoroughly Apple-ized high-def TV. I've been pondering this question pretty regularly, given that I think Apple is at the tail end of an innovation cycle that started with the iPod (reinvented music), then moved on to the iPhone (an iPod with a phone, re-invented mobile), and then brought out the iPad (a big iPod, poised to decimate the low-cost PC market). What's next?

A TV set — versus the current AppleTV box — seems obvious. The reinvention factor will be the delivery of TV content. And therein lies the challenge: Apple has put, in sequence, the music industry, the wireless industry, and the publishing industry at its feet. Will Hollywood and the cable companies agree to play by Apple's terms?

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