Consumer Reports Dings the iPhone 5, But Why?

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Consumer Reports is, generally, the go-to magazine for unbiased reviews of consumer products and services. If you want to know what the best whatever you want is for the money, CR is the place to look. However, generally, CR has also been pretty harsh on the iPhone and other Apple products and the February issue is no different—Consumer Reports puts the iPhone 5 dead last for all major American carriers. The only question is—why?

Reported first by Business Insider and today by 9to5Mac, the February issue of Consumer Reports (which isn’t out yet) puts the iPhone 5 dead last compared to a slew of other other phones. The problem, however, is that we have no idea why the iPhone 5 ranked so poorly. None. Nada. Zip.

Could it be call quality? Could it be 4G speed? Could it be price per year amortization over the two year contract? The bottom line is that we have no idea why it ranked poorly and shouldn’t draw too many conclusions in the meantime.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying the iPhone 5 is perfect by any means. Nor am I saying anything like “well people bought millions of them, so how can all of them be wrong…” to soften the blow. What is essential to understand is that Consumer Reports, although unbiased and nonprofit, does like to grab headlines when it reviews hot tech gadgets—especially Apple gadgets—and while I don’t think CR is just pandering to headlines, I think they certainly have built up enough buzz around these rankings that when the February issue comes out (shortly I believe), people are going to dive right in and see what the fuss is about.

Maybe it’s a key factor. Maybe it’s a nonissue. Maybe they didn’t get a secret decoder ring in their iPhone box and they are pissed. Let’s just wait and see what the full story is before we decide the fate of the iPhone 5.

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