So I finally picked up an iPhone 5 yesterday.

Astonishingly, iPhone 5 did not instantly take five pounds off my middle or make me devastatingly witty. Nor did my wife, excited by my new technologically-enhanced size, immediately turn into an eager groupie. In fact, if I recall correctly, the conversation when I came home featured the words “how” and “much” and “cost” rather prominently. It’s possible I mis-heard.

But it sure is a pretty nice little upgrade.

For the actual VentureBeat iPhone5 review … check here.

The slight increase in size makes iPhone better for both reading and watching. The reduced girth makes it fit better in your pocket. The lighter weight make you less anxious that a small-but-heavy objet-d’art will slip from your butterfingers. And the beefier battery — still almost full this morning after a charge yesterday around noon — makes you just a little less soup Nazi about ensuring your phone is fully charged before leaving the house in the morning.

One caution about the pocket thing?

Above: iPhone5 next to my Google/Samsung Nexus

Image Credit: John Koetsier

Be careful about bending over to tie your shoes with iPhone 5 in your front pocket. That one extra row of icons could completely mitigate iPhone 5’s inexplicable inability to induce amatory attitudes in your significant other.

I’m not really concerned about the aluminum-is-a-softer-metal scratch factor. Phones are tools, tools get used, and used things take wear. It’s a fact of life that I’m resigned to, and since I’m rabidly anti-case (anti anything that adds weight and bulk to my devices, actually), it’s something that I’ve learned to live with.

Besides, I picked white, which has fewer issues by all accounts than black.

Something I’ve noticed in my few short hours of playing with iPhone 5 is that the phone appears to have extremely good audio quality. Frankly, it was astonishingly good. Talking to a friend felt almost, at times, like being in the same room with someone. Which is interesting given that smartphones’ least-used feature, sometimes, seems to be the phone part. But with iPhone 5, I’m taking a renewed pleasure in using my phone as Alexander Graham Bell originally intended.

And, in true Apple fashion: one more thing is worth mentioning. This is a fast phone.

I’m not a big gamer — ask my kids, my copy of Call of Duty: Modern Warefare is still sitting around unused — but I do occasionally kill a few minutes on my phones. And while the extra speed doesn’t make me jump any faster in Temple Run, I’ve noticed much faster app load times.

Jetpack, for instance, which seemed to take agonizing minutes on my iPhone 4S (add some emphasis on seemed in that phrase), loads in six or seven seconds on iPhone 5 from a cold start. Everything else seems a bit snappier too.

All told, it’s a great update, and I’m happy with it. Not revolutionary but evolutionary.

That, I think, is for the iPhone 6.