Archive for August, 2008

A month of iPhone

I’ve had my iPhone for about a month now, so I thought I’d chime in with the rest of the iPhone reviews flooding cyberspace.

I’ve been reading about the various problems people have been having and I’ve got to say that I haven’t experienced these problems yet. I have been updating the software when the updates become available, so perhaps that’s been keeping me clear of the issues.

I live in an area that gets excellent 3G coverage. This past weekend I was in Philadelphia and the 3G coverage was also good with just a couple of exceptions. One thing I did have trouble with was the Maps application in a moving vehicle. I found that if I had my position identified when the vehicle was stopped, I could then track my progress for quite some time. If I stopped Maps and attempted to do this while moving, then Maps had trouble.

I previously had a Windows Mobile “smart” phone. The iPhone is so much better than that. The two just do not compare (so I will). The iPhone starts faster, is more responsive, has better call quality, and is so much easier to use. The Windows “smart” phone was like using an old ASCII terminal (yes, I am that old). Poorly designed with poor software, I couldn’t wait to get rid of it. The thing didn’t even know about daylight savings time until I downloaded a hard-to-find patch for it!

But the iPhone isn’t perfect yet. It definitely needs stereo bluetooth, better battery life, and a memory expansion slot. I like the keyboard, actually, and am pretty good at typing on it. That “smart” phone had a terrible keyboard. And who thought overlaying numbers on the keyboard was a good idea? At least the iPhone can draw whatever keyboard it needs at the appropriate time.

I also dislike the earbuds it comes with. I guess I have little ears because on the plane trip they made my ears sore and kept falling out. But I did feel sorry for the woman seated next to me who kept juggling all of her equipment – I just had my iPhone for entertainment (watched a movie – perfect for an airplane) as well calling home when I arrived. I’ve now ordered some new earphones that come with an assortment of tips.

I love the fact that it is expandable and there are so many apps for it. I have this terrific tip calculator that is positively ingenious. I also have the Pandora app. Plus you can get apps to stream radio and podcasts.

Oh, and the very first app I downloaded was “Remote” – turning the iPhone into a remote control for iTunes. I have my Macs upstairs, but downstairs in the living room I have an Apple Airport Express plugged into the stereo. Now with the Remote application I can control iTunes from the sofa without having to run up the stairs. This app is awesome – it is so ‘real time’ that adjusting the volume on the phone instantly adjusts the play volume. Whoever wrote this deserves a huge bonus.

The bottom line is that I love this phone. It does everything I want and if I want something more, someone has, or will, write an app to do that, too. The iPhone 3G was definitely worth the wait, for me.

Now if Apple will just merge Apple TV with the Mac Mini…