Friday, October 12, 2007

Today's iPhone status

Yes, I have an iPhone.  Bought it shortly after it came out for all the obvious reasons, including the real ones and the rationalizations.  One real reason was to reduce the number of "things" that I carry; at present, the core set is a cellphone, an iPod, and a PalmPilot running some applications.  

Getting something new includes figuring how it fits into your life.  This is true whether you are acquiring kids, bicycles, or iPhones.  In the case of the iPhone, there are several roles that need to transition if this to be considered successful.
  • Phone:  My company cellphone is already on AT&T, but the company does not support iPhone, has not negotiated deals with AT&T.  For the duration and to be able to evaluate the phone, I'm paying for an account myself.
  • iPod:  The old iPod is a third-generation 60GB non-video model.  Paring down 60GB of essential audio to about 8GB was a lot less angst than I expected.  It's still on the computer, after all.  
  • Palm:  The applications are the hardest part, because the iPhone as shipped is functionally incomplete. The web-based apps that Apple encourages are unreliable and slow.  The user community has developed a set of embedded apps, but the latest Apple update breaks them.  Deciding that I prefer these apps to Apple's new UI tweaks (and having no interest in purchasing more Apple songs and ringtones, which is also facilitaed by the new update), I'm staying at iPhone v1.0.2 until a better story comes along.  This gives me a reader, keychain, true IM, a couple of games, even a Mac-style "Finder" into the OS.
New features.  That's another nice part of it.  I've found a great belt clip for the iPhone, and so have a free pocket for the first time in years.  Can play widescreen movies (watching "An American in Paris" on the iPhone is one of the closest things to miraculous I have experienced in years).   Some of those apps exploit the new platform: a pedometer, a tilt displayer, an etch-a-sketch that erases the image when you shake the phone!