My iPhone Experience
Recently, while my PDA was acting strangely, I tried the Apple iPhone as a prospective replacement for my AT&T Tilt (HTC 8925 running Windows Mobile 6.1). I bought an 8-gig 3G Black. Used it for 4 days, and returned it to go back to myÂ Tilt (after hard-resetting it and reinstalling software).
Here’s what I like about the iPhone:
- Nice form-factor. It felt sleek & good in my hand and in my pocket
- Good screen. Nice, large, and bright
- Decent battery life
- Good network reception
- Good sound on iPod stuff
- Nice little touches throughout — the phone screen going off automatically when you put it to your ear and back on again when you bring it down — the garbage can animation when deleting a picture, for example — and others.
Here’s what I didn’t like:
- Single-tasking! Why can’t I, for example, update my RSS feeds in the background while I organize my calendar?
- Kludgy to get Audible audiobooks into the iPhone
- No copy-and-paste between applications
- No recurring reminders (I wanted Windows Mobile’s “Remind again 5 minutes before event starts” and other re-reminder options that the iPhone didn’t provide)
- No caching RSS feed reader (I wanted the iPhone to download & cache all my feeds & images so I don’t have to wait for each one to download, and I can read feeds in a no-network area)
- No turn-by-turn GPS (I know it’s coming, but it’s not here now)
- 2 megapixel camera. My PDA has a 3 megapixel. Why go backward?
- Too many apps that are feature limited or payware. I felt nickled-and-dimed.
- Cannot hard-reset and rebuild. It felt like IÂ was being allowed to use their proprietary technology, but IÂ never feltÂ like I was using my technology.
- Apple’s iron-fisted control over the apps that are available and their slow app review/release process
- Cannot expand the iPhone’s memory
- Cannot mark calendar events as private
- Cannot assign calendar events to categories. My brother-in-law showed me a workaround involving multiple calendars, but that made my desktop calendar view messy.
- The iPhone did not show today’s special events (birthdays, anniversaries, etc) in the calendar view. Sure there are apps for that, but I look at my calendar every day — why should I have to install/open another app?
- Lack of a Today screen (though I was getting used to not having it) — I saw a cool unlock screen app that would put the day’s events on the lock screen that was pretty cool. Maybe that was for jailbroken phones only.
- The entire need to “jailbreak” one’s iPhone. I’m an adult. Let me decide what to install on my PDA.
If/when Apple addresses these issues, I will consider the iPhone again. But things like “single tasking” are not likely to be addressed by firmware revisions.
In response to Apple’s rapid release cycle, I’ve heard it said that when Apple releases something that is useful to you as it is that you should consider buying it. The iPhone, while very cool — and the focus of a rabid fanbase — just didn’t have the business applications that I require. It was not useful to me as it is. It’s a good platform; just not for me at this point.