After having used the iPhone rather intensively for about a day now, I think I’ve managed to dig down through most of the pros and cons of the phone. To call this a “review” is perhaps a little bit far fetched since it’s really just a list of those pros and cons, but who cares? Keep in mind that my impressions are from a jailbraked and unlocked handset with firmware version 1.0.2, not the latest 1.1.1 version.
- The screen is the first thing that makes you go “wow”. It’s large, bright, the multi touch feature works great and Safari can be used in landscape mode simply by tilting the iPhone.
- The second thing you notice is the iPhone’s speed. It makes most other high-end handsets look like turtles. It’s extremely responsive and immediately does what you tell it to do.
- The interface and the applications are easy to use and mostly intuitive to understand.
- The battery life seems good, at least when you consider the large screen, the speed and that I’ve had Wi-Fi turned on all the time.
- The iPhone synched without a hitch with Address Book and iCal on my MacBook Pro.
- The Wi-Fi works great, I had no troubles when connecting to the wireless router and wireless repeater in my apartment and a public network downtown.
- Safari works great as a web browser when you’re on Wi-Fi and have all the bandwidth you would normally have on a computer.
- Google Maps is installed as a separate application, great stuff.
- Safari has QuickTime support, meaning that you can stream and watch QuickTime movies, for instance all the fun stuff from Apple Movie Trailers.
- The large screen is great for on-the-go video. I ripped an episode of American Dad with Handbrake, it played flawlessly and looked great.
- There is no GPS, supposedly because it uses too much battery power. With an option to turn it off when it was not needed, that wouldn’t really have been a problem, and with a GPS, Google Maps would be the only GPS solution you’d ever need.
- I was unable to get the iPhone to pair with my MacBook Pro using Bluetooth, but it could be that I broke something during the unlocking process.
- You can’t install 3rd party applications (before jailbreaking it, that is).
- The user has no access to file system (again, that is before jailbreaking the phone). This is a real pain in the ass, even though you will never need access to any of the system files, you should at least get access to a directory where you can save files and downloads.
- You can’t save attachments you receive in e-mails.
- You can’t send attachments with e-mails. I guess that’s natural when you don’t have access to the file system.
- It’s not possible to download files with Safari.
- There is no MMS support.
- The camera has no video support, only still photography.
- There is no copy/paste option when editing text, which is a real bitch when you for instance have something in an SMS you want to mail to someone.
- The iPhone does not support user profiles (meeting, outdoors, etc) with different sound, volume and vibrate options depending on where you are. All you can do is to turn the sound on and off and turn vibrate on and off.
- You can’t modify sounds except for the ring tone sound (the text message sound can be changed in version 1.1.1).
- There is no drag and drop of files from the music library to the iPhone in iTunes, you have to create a playlist and tell iTunes to synch that. Very inconvenient. It’s possible to drag and drop from iTunes to an iPod, so why not the iPhone?
- There are no to-do lists, you’ll need a 3rd party application for that.
- The camera has no options whatsoever.
- You don’t have the usual T9 typing, and the auto correction feature does not work as good as T9.
- It’s not possible to upload files to a website from Safari since there is no access to the file system. The button is there in the web form, but it’s disabled. This means that I can’t use the iPhone to upload new Moblog entries.
- Due to a major design flaw, it’s not possible for me to use my Koss Sporta Pro headphones and I suspect that the same is the case for Koss' Porta Pro and a lot of other headphones. The connector just won’t fit. Using the provided Apple ear plugs is not an option as ear plugs suck ass.
- Browsing using GPRS or EDGE can be quite expensive if you’re not on a unlimited data plan since everything is downloaded directly from the sites you’re visiting without any compression. Opera has a much better solution where all the data is sent through proxies and compressed to a format the Opera Mini browser understands. Maybe we’ll see Opera Mini for the iPhone one day.
- There is no 3G, but is it really a con?
It looks like the Jesus phone has a lot to be desired on the software front, but hardware-wise it beats pretty much every other phone available today. If Apple is able to add the missing functionality and iron out the worst wrinkles through firmware updates in the future - and the hackers are able to keep up so I can update to the latest firmware on my unlocked phone - the iPhone is likely to turn into thePhone.
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