It’s been 3 months using the iphone 3G so I thought I would post an update on the pros and cons.
I’ll get the irritations over with the start with, with the most annoying first…
- First would have to be the freezing that happens occasionally when you dial out. I contacted Vodafone and got shuffled through various call centers until I ended up with Apple who told me how to ‘reboot’ the iphone. This is not information that comes with the phone, you hold down the function button and the off button for a few seconds and keep on holding them down when the turn off option appears on the screen, this shuts the unit off, you then can restart it. Apple staff told me that if I kept doing this eventually the problem would decrease. This doesn’t seem very logical, but in fact this has been the case and it now happens rarely.
- I wish you could use the landscape function more, and that the key board could be used for everything like this, it would make it easier to use. I’d guess this is just a software option but surely it makes sense to be able to type emails landscape? Hopefully this will appear sometime soon.
- It would be good to have the ‘recents’ phone call list also show what phone someone has called you from (Blackberry does this), for example did John call you from his mobile or land line, you have the definitions in your contacts but it doesn’t show them on the recent call list.
- GPS, it’s very average, and difficult to use in the car because the phone keeps going into sleep mode. This may be the google widget I’m using and there may be different ones that are available, but this is no Navman or TomTom, which is a pity.
Now the good things. Some of these I hadn’t even considered, but as I’ve used the phone it’s apparent why they are so useful.
- Wifi. This is great! I was worried about my bill at the end of the month, but I haven’t yet used up by data allowance because at work and home the phone picks up the wifi network by preference and therefore you don’t pay your carrier for the downloaded data. It’s also surprising just how many networks there are around, and how many are unsecured, which means very often you have a network that allows you to access email at little or no cost. This has been one of the best functions of the phone, and it is so easy to use, and it saves you money and allows you to surf the net and download email faster than the 3G network without being stung by your carrier.
- The touch screen. I’m not entirely sold on the key board, but I’m getting better at it and the predictive text helps a lot. But being about to navigate with strokes is much easier than a mechanical method and Apples interface is superb.
- Predictive text. The keyboard isn’t fantastic for fast typing unless it’s in landscape, but the predictive text is excellent especially as it learns words you type a lot.
- The applications. At the beginning there were a lot of OK but dull apps, but over the last few months more have appeared and some of them are impressive. The latest ones being National Banks account access, and instant access to all the traffic web cams in Auckland (or Wellington and Christchurch).One of my gripes was not being able to edit spreadsheets and word documents, but I have found a app that does this neatly. There are more appearing everyday and you can even write your own. Many are free and most only cost a few dollars, these go onto your itunes account, not your phone account which is something that might interest corporate IT departments – it means the staff are not going to be running up bills downloading ring tones, they can do it with their own money with their itunes account.
I’ve looked the new Blackberry Storm features, the camera looks good, but there is no wifi. There’s no way I would go back to a phone without wifi because of the savings and ease of use. Blackberry obviously want to tie users into their email, that’s where they make money, just as Apple want you using their applications and itunes, slightly different ways of revenue gathering, but without the wifi the new Blackberry is just a blackberry with an SD card slot and a (not so good) touch screen.
The Apple is a great phone and I’m glad that Blackberry didn’t get their phone out onto the NZ market in time because I would have gone with that and not tried the iphone. That way I would have never discovered that I can convert my phone into a light sabre, another clever app that uses the motion sensors in the phone to create very realistic light sabre sounds!
Now if only I could figure out to do with the remaining 13GB of memory.
Oh, and it’s also a great phone too!