playing with an iphone...
So I'm sure everyone is wondering what I think of the iphone. I made it over the the apple store to play with one this morning and I really do have to say "wow!" It's pretty amazing, especially as the first shot at a phone apple has made. The web browser is incredible as it's the real safari engine so you see the full web pages and you can pinch with your fingers to zoom in on areas. No more Metra train schedules showing up as garbled text in opera. I found the touchscreen to be pretty simple to use and navigating around the phone was fairly simple. The navigation through lists was a breeze and certainly better than with a 5-way, wheel, etc.
Now for the bad things and what will continue to keep me from buying one... The on-screen keyboard was impossible to use. I tried typing a few URLs and unless I explicitly took one finger, brought it slowly down on one key icon, verified it was the letter I wanted, and then slowly released it, I wouldn't get the key I was hoping for. I tried again and again and just couldn't get it down. Maybe it's something you can learn with time, but it was just not working for me at all.
Strike number two is the network. It's a 2.5G device that runs on Edge on ATT/Cingular. First off, Cingular has HSDPA now nationwide which is faster than DSL speeds right to your phone over the normal cell network. Once you've tried this, you can't go back :) Also, because it runs full Safari, it has to download the full content of all of the pages - not like opera mini which uses a proxy server to cut down on graphic sizes, etc. Browsing the web on here would be even slower than on my Moto Ming at 2.5G. Also, I don't get ATT/Cingular coverage where I live.
And strike three has to be lack of video capture support. You can take nice still pictures with the 2MP camera, but no video. And that's also a dealbreaker for me.
Finally, two other oddities that would make me think twice are the lack of a removable battery (I guess you can't take the thing camping) and lack of MMS support. I guess you can just email photos, but sometimes I really want to send it to someone's phone right now.
We'll see what apple can do for their next round. But for this one, it's a really amazing first try, and the software is just amazing. But they left out a few things that for me are just required in a phone in the year 2007 - typing, fast data, and video capture.
Oh, and fyi, the Schaumburg store didn't sell out last night. They expect to still have stock through the weekend.