Although I buy a lot of Apple products, I don’t consider myself an Apple fanatic. The only reason why I buy Apple is because the alternatives just suck or aren’t good enough. Now, here’s the good and the bad of 3G iPhones.
Battery life sucks. I mean that on so many levels. It will suck your battery juice like a blood-thirsty vampire on a rampage. Maybe it’ll work if you carry one of those hand-pump electric generators but for all the great features in such a nice package, you better be packing a car battery in that bag of yours. It is a bit heavy-ish as well, especially if you’re used to the iPod touch. It feels like holding a bar of soap made of semi-dense rock if that makes any sense to you.
The camera is so so. It would have been cutting edge if this was 2002, but not anything shockingly bad. Carry a REAL camera if you want to take REAL pictures.
The price is another negative of course. Basically, you’re paying a good early adopter tax for always connected 24/7 (the catch is battery life is 15 minutes) hi-tech device. If you really need a cell phone, you’re better off avoiding the iphone unless you are always in the vicinity of freely available electric outlets. If you use your phone for texting, then Blackberrys should be your thing.
Having gotten that out of the way, let me just say that the device is nothing short of amazing. The first thing I did on my way home was check out the Maps application. First, it correctly located me as I was riding the train and the next thing you know it was updating itself every couple of seconds showing me as a little push pin moving along the train tracks! I was literally blown away by the experience. I could see what station I was approaching without hearing any announcements or looking up at the LED sign near the door. Now I know it wont be much after I get used to it but it’s still awesome. I often find myself during the morning commute trying to look past people to see where I’m at after falling asleep or being engrossed in a book or movie. Now I’ll know with precision.
The Wifi App store is full of some great selections, most of them free. Like I said, I think most people are paying for games and not much more. The rest are downloading companion apps. I’ll just say that there are many amazing apps out there. The two Twitter apps, Twitterific and Twitterator, are great. Why would you want two? Twitterator allows you to browse the public feed and also follow interesting people from within the app. You can send updates and it’s a lot lighter than Twitterific, noticeably so. Having both will be handy. Twinkle missed the boat on this one but I’m still partial to them and the interface looks good too.
The Associated Press and Bloomberg came out of no where to give us some really great apps for free. Live stock info with graphs and news from Bloomberg and breaking stories from Associated Press. I really enjoyed those. Great value for FREE. Check them out.
On the other hand, the Flickr app wasn’t quite up to par with my expectations. This has nothing to do with the quality of the app itself. In fact, the app itself is magnificent. However, downloading a ton of thumbnails across a stunted mobile network is just what you expect, frustrating.
The social network apps such as those of Facebook are promising but not nearly enough of the features you would expect. It also makes you wonder if they would build all of that into the app since many iphone owners would stop logging in on the website.
The phone functionality of the iphone is also quite amazing. I wasn’t expecting much in this department but I must say, it’s done quite nicely. The mic embedded into an otherwise standard looking set of headphones picks up your voice quite well, you barely have to whisper to be heard. The phone fades in and fades out discretely and voice quality is good.
About the only problem I have right now is that my chaotic address book aka “the rolodex from hell” imported from the mac is a nightmare to navigate. I need to fix that.
So all in all, I’d say if you can wait just wait, if you got some spare cash or don’t need as many calories in your diet as you think you do, buy it. Especially if you’re into tech, this phone will just amaze you with the possibilities of a true mobile platform. I think that’s really the only premium that keeps people so hyped about the iphone, even if it’s a nice re-packaging of technology that’s already been out there, it’ll give you a taste of the future TODAY and that just might be the edge you’re looking for.