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Just Brilliant

Entry 816, on 2008-07-19 at 21:00:39 (Rating 1, Computers)

I have used my iPhone for a few days now so its time to record some initial impressions. Well, as the title says, its just brilliant. Not everyone agrees with this - I have seen some negative reviews and I even heard some derogatory comments at the store which sells them (from someone who doesn't even have one) but I think those people are missing the point.

The point is that the iPhone isn't really a phone. Despite the name, the iPhone is really a hand held computer. I agree that there are some phone features missing: pxt messaging, video messaging, and video recording being the most obvious. None of these are problems which cannot be fixed in future firmware revisions (although not having a forward facing camera makes video chat difficult). If the iPhone was a phone these might be serious, but being a phone is just one function so that makes them less critical.

The strengths of the iPhone are its flexibility (especially after downloading extra programs from the iTunes application store - a really simple process) and its ease of use. It really is very easy to use. Even my wife could use it straight away (after receiving just one instruction: pressing the menu button to go to the menu screen) and she has problems with every other phone she has used.

The iPod function is excellent. It has a great user interface and the sound quality seems good - even with the Apple earphones which haven't been the best in the past.

The phone function is good too - I particularly like using the earphones and built-in mic and the way the iPod pauses during a call and continues after it is so much better than fiddling with an iPod and a separate cell phone like I used to when I got a call.

On wifi and 3G web browsing is fast and easy. Most web sites are quite usable and can be read even on the small screen. The same applies to mail although I need to find a way to choose which email accounts to sync to avoid having so many messages to deal with.

I still make a few errors using the touch keyboard but I am getting better. I can certainly enter text a lot faster than I can on a conventional phone. I'm not sure whether I will ever write a blog entry on the phone but I have done a few Twitter posts already.

I have installed several free and paid programs and the process is incredibly easy. Some of the apps have bugs and one even caused the phone to crash, so you do have to be selective. It would also be nice to try the program before buying it because I have already bought one program which I will probably never use.

I haven't found any really great games yet but there are a few which I do enjoy playing. The games that use the accelerometer are particularly fun!

So in summary the iPhone is just brilliant. I think it will be another product like the iPod. Everyone else will try to copy it but they will probably only produce lame imitations like the Zune is a pitiful imitation of the iPod.


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