So I just got an iPhone 3GS. There are already lots of reviews of it out there, so I'll try to make my impressions about non-obvious things ... or at least use the word "fuck" more than other reviewers.
- Why the fuck can't I sync my calendar and contacts (or music, if I really wanted to) over Bluetooth or WiFi? Plugging stuff in is so 2007.
- Why the fuck can't anything bigger than 10MB be downloaded directly from the iPhone?
- Why the fuck isn't there a play/pause button on the outside of the phone? I don't want to take the whole phone out and press 2 different buttons just to pause the music for a second. There's external volume control, and a perfect amount of space between + and - to put a pause button, which would duplicate the little remote on the headphone.
- Speaking of which, why the fuck do the headphones suck so bad? The little remote / microphone on them is genius, especially when combined with voice control. It makes accomplishing any tasks that don't require a screen - like listening to music or making calls - easy to do without whipping out the whole phone. But the only way to get this functionality is to use the included headphones, which have just horrible sound quality. It's like someone barfed all over my music collection. This, and the lack of external control, makes it pretty useless as an iPod.
- Also making sure it won't replace the iPod is the limited storage capacity. Maybe I'm just being nitpicky now, but I really really wish there was just one device that would do everything. All it would take is to make an iPhone with 160GB or so of storage. I know it would be expensive and/or heavy. I don't care. I'd pay for it if it existed.
- The novelty of being able to browse the web, email, Twitter, Facebook, etc., from a phone will take a long time to wear off. This is truly the stuff of science fiction. For fuck's sake people, we're able to access the recorded thoughts of millions of other people, and transmit our own thoughts, from anywhere we go. Almost any work of art, music, or literature created throughout history can be accessed at any time with a few taps and flicks of the finger. Just years ago that would have seemed like magic.
- The compass usually works fine, and combining it with Google maps makes real life like a video game with a little map in the corner of the screen. I'm really looking forward to what sorts of applications can be created that use the magnetometer (and given my own research on geomagnetism, I hope there's one that simply measures the strength of local magnetic fields).
- Typing on the iPhone is easier than I thought it would be. Even without physical buttons, I can type much faster than I ever could on my old phone.
- Tethering is incredible. Without even taking the phone out of my pocket, I can use my laptop with full internet access almost anywhere. Useful given that most coffee shops around here still don't have free WiFi...or for getting work done under a tree in Victoria Park.
- Voice control actually works! As I listened to music through the headphones that came with it, I wondered to myself, "hey, myself, I wonder if holding down the headphone button will activate voice control just like holding down the home button on the phone?" So I tried it, and voila, it gave me the little "talk to me" beep. "Play songs by Little Boots?" I mumbled to the air uncertainly. And sure enough, my iPhone said to me in a pleasant female voice: "Playing songs by Little Boots." I loved the phone before, in the abstract sense that one loves a beautiful piece of technology. Now I love it in the sense that it's something I can have conversations with.
- There is no such thing as down time any more. I can catch up on email or Twitter, or even work on my novel, while waiting for the bus, or in line for coffee, or whenever. Or I could blog while taking a dump! HI!