The big news this week is that Apple had launched its precious new baby, the iPhone 5. How Apple manages to drum up this much buzz about each and every version befuddles me. The new phone is 18 percent slimmer and 20 percent lighter, but the iPhone 4S wasn’t very large or heavy to start with. The iPhone 5 screen is a little larger and more vivid. Its processing and wireless are faster. It has new headphones. It has new camera features, but none that my point-and-shoot haven’t had for a long time. It has a new adapter that requires a change of accessories. Meh. It’s not enough for me to spend $500 on it when I can wait a while longer for my contract to provide me with an upgrade. Even then, it will probably still cost $200.
Two summers ago, I wrote about why I was dying for an iPhone 4 but resisting (it was stupid expensive; I already had more than enough technology). I did eventually get one when I qualified for an upgrade, but I didn’t pounce right away and spend a fortune just because I wanted the bells and whistles. And I never moved on to the iPhone 4S — I decided it wasn’t worth spending the money for a new phone just to play with a robot voice.
I’ve done some reading on the Apple site, and here are a few reasons why I’m excited to get an iPhone 5 when the day comes for me to get an upgrade — and not a day sooner:
- It has a new Apple Maps built-in app, so you no longer have to rely on Google Maps (which works fine on the computer, but not so great on iPhones).
- The camera has a built-in panorama feature. As I mentioned, my good point-and-shoot already has that, so I’m not clamoring for it. But it would be cool to use it as a phone feature since now I can only do it on my iPhone from third-party apps.
- There’s a new built-in app called Passbook, which keeps track of your electronic boarding passes, movie tickets, gift cards, coupons, etc. in one place that’s very accessible.
- There’s a new phone feature that, instead of immediately declining a call, allows you to click “reply with message” and choose from pre-written or custom messages such as “Can’t talk right now … what’s up?” Perfect for when you’re in a meeting and can’t be interrupted.
Note that new iPhone users have to go through a credit check, so if your credit is in bad shape, you may have to pay a deposit of several hundred dollars. At least it’s a good motivation to improve your credit, right?
Are you purchasing an iPhone 5 now, or are you going to wait like me? Read on for my list of my top 10 favorite personal finance blog posts from the past week.
1. 20$s Finances explains why you should think before you co-sign a loan, particularly because of how it can affect your credit score.
2. Money Q&A discusses how budgeting can help you set your financial goals and priorities.
3. What happens when you build up great credit but then move to a different country? Canadian Budget Binder describes the process of rebuilding credit as a new permanent resident in Canada.
4. Cash Money Life questions whether you should sign up for overdraft protection on your bank account.
5. Give Me Back My Five Bucks reveals the etiquette for how much you should spend on a wedding present.
6. Frugal Confessions presents a funny post about the financial lessons that can be learned from the fictional Clark Griswold’s mistakes.
7. Financial Samurai explains why some folks can’t seem to stop spending more than they’re earning.
8. Tackling Our Debt lists nine ways you can effectively deal with financial stress.
9. Rich Credit Debt Loan shares 15 financial tidbits known by people who are smart with their finances. Loan
10. TeacHer Finance touts the benefits of having an interest-free credit card.