It doesn't appear that you understand it yet

"Locked into older technology"

If your worry is about keeping up with the Jones', then perhaps. The reality is, upgrading from HSPA+ (the 4S) to a future version of the iPhone w/ LTE won't mean as much in the real world once the network is full of users. Initial speeds won't be a massive jump in performance per user. Most of the benefit of LTE is about capacity. In this regard, a handset might still be considered an extremely functional and capable device regardless if it has access to the latest network technology. Put everything in perspective instead of worrying about whether or not CR or CNET happens to label a product 'best in class'.