Apple iPhone 5 launched, is bigger, faster but lacks wow
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Apple Inc's new iPhone goes on sale on Friday with a bigger screen and 4G wireless technology, as the company seeks to maintain its edge over rivals such as Samsung Electronics Co Ltd and Google Inc.
The iPhone 5 met the expectations laid out by gadget geeks and tech analysts ahead of the unveiling on Wednesday, but offered few surprises to give Apple shares -- already trading near record highs -- another major kick.
"There is not a wow factor because everything you saw today is evolutionary. I do think they did enough to satisfy," said Michael Yoshikami, chief executive of the wealth management company Destination Wealth Management.
Other industry analysts turned quickly to speculating about what else was in Apple's product pipeline ahead of the crucial end-year holiday season, especially as the company stayed mum about an oft-rumored TV device or a smaller iPad.
We would really like to see the iPad Mini in the product offering for the all important holiday quarter. They still have time, said Channing Smith, co-manager of the Capital Advisors Growth Fund. As soon as we see that, we will have more conviction about the stock heading into the final quarter.
Shares in Apple ended the day up 1.4 percent at $669.79.
The latest iPhone comes as Apple faces new competition from Microsoft Corp, which is pushing its Windows Phone 8 operating system as a third alternative to Apple and Google's Android, the most-used mobile operating system in the world.
Analysts have forecast sales of 10 million to 12 million of the new iPhones in this month alone.
CEDING A LEAD
Apple has sold more than 243 million iPhones since 2007, and the device ushered in the current applications ecosystem.
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