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|iphone 2.0 release
It was the big Apple iPhone 3G/2.0 announcement on Monday, with everyone
hanging by their bare fingernails waiting for Steve Jobs to proclaim the next
iPhone goodies from Apple. Rumors ranged from colored iPhone models to video
chat. The biggest news was a price reduction, offering the current iPhone model
at $199, and the sale of iPhones in 70-some international markets. Here's my
take on Apple's iPhone 3G phone and iPhone 2.0 software announcements.
Category: Playing Catch Up, or Welcome to 2007, iPhone
* Exchange Active Sync / Push Email - A fundamental must for business, technical
and everyday users who want an iPhone that works with their company's Microsoft
Exchange server. No new news here. Everybody knew it was a big limitation of the
iPhone, and we knew it would be part of this announcement based on Jobs'
* 3G network. 2.8x faster than EDGE on the iPhone. Now users won't hesitate
bringing out their iPhones around other smartphone users for fear of being
subject to yet another web page download speed test. Nuf' said.
* GPS - And GPS wasn't in the original iPhone, because? Another must have
feature for every mobile device that wants to claim it's more than a phone.
* Microsoft Office and iWork document viewing: Now, look at those attachments,
like you wanted to in 2007.
* Remote wipe capability. That's another must have for any business user, and
should be for every other user for that matter who cares about not having their
personal or business data stolen on a lost iPhone.
* VPN and WPA WiFi support.
Category: Fixing What Needed Fixing, or again, Welcome to 2007, iPhone
* Contact Search - Finding contacts when you had a large number of contacts was
difficult. Nice to have that fixed as this was another gotcha for business users
with lots of contacts.
* Photo Saving - Now save photo attachments sent via email to the photo library.
* Email bulk move and delete.
* Redesigned headphone jack. No more clunky adapter.
* Improved battery life. The iPhone's first battery design was
uncharacteristically decent. iPhone 3G's battery supports 300 hrs of standby
time, 10 hrs of 2G talk time, and 5 hrs of 3G talk time.
Category: Raising The Bar, Today and In The Future
* Location based apps and services. Jobs hinted that the future is about
location, location, location. I happen to believe this as well, though I believe
voice interface is also the future of mobile applications (something the iPhone
still very much lacks.)
* Becoming the "platform": iPhone SDK. Location & social mapping apps like Loop.
Easy blogging apps like the TypePad client. eBay app.
Category: What's Still Missing
* Copy and Paste, from the people who brought you copy and paste. Wasn't it the
Mac and Lisa that brought the concept of cut/copy/paste out of the Xerox labs
and into the hands of computer users all over the world? Thought so. How'd that
get left off the iPhone 1.0 and 2.0 software versions. That one's hard to
* Voice command interface. As much as Apple has raised the bar in the visual
department, it's severely lacking a voice command and voice record app
interface. I happen to believe that voice interface is just as important or more
so than visual interfaces for mobile devices. Try looking up a contact on the
iPhone while driving down the highway at 75mph. On second thought, save several
lives, and don't. Wait until you have voice command and record interface for the
* iPhone used as a tethered broadband data modem. All that data capacity makes
my laptop salivate, but with no way to tether the iPhone as a modem, paying ATT
all that money for unlimited broadband data access seems like a crime. Shouldn't
we get carbon credits or something?
* ATT is still the only US authorized carrier. And ATT's taking steps to help
keep it that way (see below.) That's like having a new pair of Nike shoes with
the laces inseparably tied together. A limitation in Apple's quest to sell 10m
iPhones units this year. Bummer.
* A 32GB iPhone. When 16GBs just isn't not enough. Can you say, memory hungry
apps waiting gobble up your phone's storage memory? Expect a repeat of what
happened when the iPods supported video content - whoosh, where'd all that
memory go? Time to shell out more dough to the Apple Store when our iPhone's 8
and 16GB capacity isn't enough. How's that for planned obsolescence and more
revenue for Apple.
* Bluetooth? Sure like to use something other than the white Apple corded
earphones. Many business users rely on their Bluetooth headsets, much to the
chagrin of those around them.
Category: Big Brother Apple, ATT Death Star
* Hand over the 2-year contract, then we'll hand over the iPhone. That's ATT's
new policy to prevent unlocked iPhones from showing up on other carriers'
networks. I guess that's why they call the ATT globe logo, the "death star".
* Will we see more iBricks? Will Apple penalize customers who download and
install applications not approved through the iStore (a.k.a. AppStore)? Can I
get an amen for a user replaceable battery? Amen! Might we have expandable
memory (SD, flash, etc., etc.)? There's no sign of relief from the "no upgrades
allowed", big brother ways of Apple.
* More closed, locked in hardware from Apple. Now there's a guaranteed upgrade
revenue stream for Jobs and more money out of our pockets for ya. And people
complain about Microsoft soaking it to their customers. More reasons why Apple
really is like 1984.
Category: And we needed that because?
* Scientific Calculator - For the pocket protector scientist in all of us. Dang,
now I really am going to have to pack up my slide rule and nifty holster.
Balancing our checkbooks will now be infinitely easier. This one was a real
puzzler to most. I suspect this was enhanced because of Apple's deep roots in
Apple's sold 2.8 million devices so far this year. With the stated goal of 10
million by years end, and the delay until July for shipping units, it could be a
stretch for Apple to meet its own stated goals. Maybe the iPhone price cuts will
give Apple that needed boost to make their numbers.