iPhone – the cheap review

OK I have to jump in and say that I got to spend 5 minutes with one over the weekend at a party.  I have to say I’m very impressed.  As with any ad you see, you know that the situation is very controlled, and things are loaded up to make the product work as they want it to appear.  So my friend hadn’t had much time to fill the device up before meeting up with us, but he had music, video, family photos, YouTube, contacts and the calendar all populated.  Here are my bullet points.

  1. The UI is as fast as the ad, except when rotating.  You rotate the phone a couple times and there is a delay… but it only seems like a delay because the rest of the phone UI is fast.  This delay is the NORMAL speed on my SmartPhone… its delays are measurable in 5-10+ second range.  iPhone was 3 seconds max.
  2. Navigating and zooming with finger gestures was fun, not sure how much I would like it over time.
  3. I spent some time watching the video on how the soft keyboard works, and feel frustrated it didn’t work as well as I hoped.  I wasn’t trying to type anything complicated and it still didn’t do a very good job predicting my key strokes.  But I only spent 5 minutes with it, I’m sure after a day, it would have trained me to type better.
  4. YouTube looks like … um.  YouTube was not very good on the iPhone, because of course of source material.  The display is beautiful, and when higher quality stuff is uploaded I’m sure it will look better.
  5. iTunes integration was apparently a breeze for my friend.  His purchased TV shows came over as well as music and album covers.  It all shows a well thought out strategy by Apple to prepare media for their devices.  The TV shows looked very good (in contrast to YouTube).
  6. There is a lack of applications, which is frustrating, but with 12k+ Apple employees with the phone, I am sure there will be web based applications a plenty soon enough.
  7. The phone is dense… compared with my MotoQ, it had a bigger screen, about the same size, but was a tad bit heavier.

That’s as far as I got before I started to drink and lost interest in the device.  My friend on the other hand was IM’ing people all night.  I couldn’t see what he was typing, just iChat like balloon windows on the screen.

Oh, one last thing…

Web browsing… “This isn’t a trimmed down version of the web… it’s the real web”… that really sucks to read on a small screen.

I’m getting old, and having to zoom to make the fonts bigger on web sites was difficult, and time consuming.  I have really enjoyed web apps that ‘know’ about mobile devices, and smartly render a more friendly experience.  If anyone hasn’t checked out Gmail from a smartphone (I use the MotoQ), it has a trimmed down UI, which focuses right on what you want to see, fits the screen, and support numberpad shortcuts (press 4 to archive this email, 0 to return to inbox at any point in the UI).

I know future apps will be written to take advantage of the iPhones display.  And being able to see the real web site when in a pinch is better than not being able to go to sites (which I can’t do at all on my MotoQ). 

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