Out with the old and in with the new iPhone 5

theitguy@islandpacket.comSeptember 23, 2012 

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  • Morgan Bonner answers your computer questions and offers technology tips and suggestions.

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Unless you've been living under a rock, you probably have heard that there's a new most-awesomest-smartphone-ever available -- the iPhone 5. It boasts a bigger screen, 4G LTE connectivity and a brand new, custom-built "A6" processor. The hardware is 20 percent lighter and 18 percent thinner than the iPhone 4S. It's a must have for all us iPhone users, and in a perfect world we were all able to upgrade this past Friday when it became available. Sadly, it's not a perfect world, and some of us who want to upgrade can't -- at least right now.

Maybe you have a dozen iPhone accessories that all use the old dock connector standard, and aren't keen on losing them or paying $29 for the adapter necessary to work with the iPhone's new connection port they refer to as "lightning" (it would have been nice of them to include one in the box), which won't even be available until October. Maybe (like yours truly) you have an old unlimited data plan with Verizon and don't want to pay the full retail price of $650 dollars for the iPhone 5 just to keep said plan. Maybe you are only really interested in the new software features available in iOS 6, most of which will run just the same on your iPhone 4S or iPhone 4 and is a free update. Maybe you're just happy with what you have already.

And yet ... Apple sold 2 million iPhone 5s in the first 24 hours it was available for pre-order. Two million! That's an absurd number for a single day, and shows a great deal of pent-up demand. So, since a great many of you will be upgrading or already have, this begs the question of what to do with your old iPhone.

  • Sell it -- Use a site like Gazelle.com or go in-person to a GameStop. Even though you won't get as much for it now that the iPhone 5 is out, it's still money in your pocket.

  • Give it to your child -- My son will be getting my old iPhone whenever I finally upgrade. Load it up with educational apps, music and cartoons to make the long drive to Grandma's house or the haircut they hate getting that much easier.

  • Give it to your parents -- My mother, in particular, seems to think that these phones and tablets all the kids are using these days are intimidating. An old iPhone is a great way to ease in for someone who might share that frame of mind.

  • Donate it -- There are many worthy charities that collect old cellphones and donate them, such as www.cellphonesforsoldiers.com and www.securethecall.org.

  • Home stereo -- Pick up a speaker dock, load up your music and go to town. Or if you can't be bothered to do even that much, put the Pandora or Spotify app on it, turn on the WiFi, and, again, go to town.

  • Camera -- the iPhone 4 and 4S boast great cameras, and there will be plenty of times where you don't want to use your main phone (like, say, when you're leaning over the rail at the top of the Empire State Building).

  • Send it to me -- I'll find something to do with it!
  • Morgan Bonner is pre-press manager and a systems administrator for the Packet and Gazette.

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