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5 things CEOs will love about the iPhone 4S

Tom Kaneshige | Oct. 6, 2011
The iconic Apple iPhone got an internal makeover but not much else this week--no radical redesign, no iPhone 5 name change. Fashion-conscious consumers weren't very happy, but iPhone-toting CEOs should be pleased with the iPhone 4S. They might even cheer Apple for leaving out a flashy upgrade.

Reason 2: The Need for Speed

What about data transfer speed? Apple apparently hasn't lost much, claiming that the iPhone 4S running on 3G networks including HSPA+, which AT&T claims delivers 4G speeds, doubles the iPhone 4 download speed to 14.4 Mbps and uploads at 5.8 Mbps.

"This is an amazing download speed, and we'll have to see it to believe it," Freimark says. "If they can engineer their way to 4G speed out of a 3G connection, it's going to be pretty remarkable."

Slideshow: 15 Best iPhone Apps for Busy CEOs

While everyone loves faster download speed, business users have the most to gain. They are often downloading business intelligence reports with iPhone apps such as Roambi. Also, more and more data-heavy critical business information is becoming available on the iPhone in the form of podcasts and video.

Related to this, the added processing power of the new A5 dual-core chip in the iPhone 4S should boost performance of graphics-intensive apps like Roambi. For IT departments that want flashy graphics, as well as to improve performance of virtual private networks and on-the-fly encryption on the iPhone, Freimark says, "the new chip effectively raises the bar."

Reason 3: The "S" in iPhone 4S Is for Siri

For super-busy executives, virtual personal assistant Siri should be a godsend.

Apple showed off Siri at the iPhone 4S launch, whereby Siri was able to understand and connect spoken words such as rain and raincoat, read text messages, take dictation, access apps such as alarms and calendars, and even create geo-fences that will, for instance, remind you to pick up some milk after leaving the office. For a CEO, this functionality could be invaluable.

While Siri sounds like something out of Star Trek, one big question remains: How will Siri perform in the real-world? It's a wait-and-see game, of course.

But Freimark thinks Apple will deliver on the capabilities of the technology. Apple's existing iPhone voice-recognition technology--a feature turned on by holding down the home button--is already pretty good, he says. Apple also spent millions last year to acquire Siri, an iPhone app that made CIO.com's list of 15 best iPhone apps for busy CEOs.

The Siri app hasn't been updated for a year, which probably means Siri and Apple engineers have been working together on this for a while. "There's a good possibility that the right minds are coming together and living up to the promise," says Freimark, adding that it could be the killer app on the iPhone.

(Freimark rightly notes that Siri won't be an "app," rather a feature built into iOS and running across apps. When I fired up Siri on my iPhone 3GS, the app indicated that it will be "going home soon" and presumably won't be available in the future as a standalone app.)

 

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