Friday, June 29, 2007

Why the iPhone Sucks

Jesus has come back, and he's a phone now.

But not really. I love Apple and everything, and I admit the iPhone looks awesome. If someone were to give me one, I'd shit my pants with glee. However, my problem with it is that, as one of the most expensive cell phones ever made, the iPhone should do everything that other cell phones do, and also have unique features and Apple's sense of style. It doesn't.

For one thing, the iPhone doesn't have all the latest technology in it. It doesn't have GPS, and uses an outdated, slower, internet technology. It barely has any storage space - 8GB at the most, which is 10 times less than my 80GB iPod. I can forgive that, though, if you just consider it the best possible cell phone that uses current technology.

What I can't forgive is the fact that my Motorola V551, which I got 2 or 3 years ago for $50 (more than ten times less than the $600 iPhone), does more than the iPhone does. Here are some things my current cell does that the iPhone doesn't:
  • Instant messenging. Send me a message on MSN when I'm not on my computer, and it goes to my cell phone.
  • Recording video. It may be shitty quality, but at least it can do it.
  • Custom ringtones. I can upload any mp3 to my cell and use it as the ringtone. The iPhone can't do this; you have to buy ringtones.
  • Games.
  • Picture messages.
  • Voice dialing.
  • Etc.

What sucks is that the iPhone is clearly capable of having all these things, but it is intentionally crippled in order to make more money (e.g. ringtones), or to hold back now so that a new hardware or software update in the future seems more impressive (e.g. NEW!!! The iPhone now has GAMES!!!! Just like CELL PHONES from 10 YEARS AGO!!!), or to avoid competing with themselves (e.g. Introducing the next-generation looks just like the iPhone, but has enough storage to be useful, and no phone!).

Technology should constantly move forward, building on itself. Each new generation should do everything the last generation did, only better, and should add new technology on top of it. The iPhone, however, is a step backwards, and that should not be the case for a phone that costs thousands of dollars over the course of its contract. It uses old technology, and purposefully leaves out features that should be standard in top of the line phones. As nice as a big touch screen is for watching the 2 videos you can store on it and slowly browsing the internet, it ain't worth the money. I can do more with the combination of my old-ass cell phone and iPod than I could by spending a month's rent on the iPhone.

Maybe I'm just bitter because I can't afford one (and they're not available yet here in Canada even if I could). But I'm hopeful that in a few years the iPhone's offspring will live up to their potential; then I'll be squirting with excitement and waiting in line to buy one like everyone else.


sarah said...

Yeah, it's the most over-hyped thing in the world. It's all because Apple's branding is so incredibly tight, that they can do no wrong these days in anyone's eyes. I keep seeing, in our unbiased news reports, iPhone stories that show everyone, including the reporter and tech critics, 'squirting with excitment' about this damn product. I love watching advertisements on the news, FUCK. It's a really expensive phone, people!!! The Apple people are counting on their powerful lifestyle branding to push their crap product and you know what? It's going to work. Everyone wants to be a Mac user these days and get the latest thing from Mac because Macs are used by the coolest, tech-saavy, forward thinking, environmentalist people (or like to think they are) only. The iPoop is going to fly off the shelf dammit... You may notice I'm posting this from my Safari on my apple OS. bleh.

I saw something funny on John Stewart last night about the iPhone. Did you see? To open his segment the guy was like "It's going to do for phones what iPods did for pods."

Canopenner said...

I hate apple.

I hope the goddamn thing doesnt sell 10 units and dumb ass apple goes away forever...

I wish I wish I wish....

Mitzzee said...

too many useless fucking gadgets and too little time. whatever happened to SPEAKING face to face? oh shit, I don't like that either.....

Nölff said...

Don't believe the hype.

I didn't buy the ipod when they first come out. They had some big problems with it. I'll bet they'll have plenty of problems with this one.

Phronk said...

Sarah: Yeah, totally. Usually I think their branding is usually pretty good, because it meshes with reality. They promise nice-looking, easy to use products, and usually deliver. But only after a few products like this, and the Apple TV, tend to be overpriced and underfeatured, for a while at least. I did see that Daily Show clip...genius! Colbert has been making fun of the iPhone pretty hardcore too.

Can: Wow, you're even more bitter than me. Awesome.

Mitzee: Yeah, actually interacting with humans sucks. Screw gadgets and people...I'm just gonna live with like 20 dogs.

Nolff: Yeah, probably. It might be worth buying in a few years, like the iPod. Or when they release an iPhond, which is an iPhone and iPod in one. With GPS and mind reading technology.

Harry J. Sachz said...

The iPhone is using EDGE technology, which is considered to some as a 2.5G network. According to this article, they were reaching speeds in excess of 200k [where available]. Granted that's not the fastest in the world, but it's not too far off of what DSL companies provide for us out here for our home. Its not HSDPA; but at least its not dial-up. My question is what do you need with all that speed? YouTube? Who is the addictive retard that needs to watch people getting hit in the nuts everywhere you go?

I will agree that the price point is way too incredible for a cell phone, but people are going to buy them like they did any other 'smart phone'. The RZR, BlackBerry, Dash, etc... opened [unsubsidized] at over $350. The iPhone, which is slick, isn't that much more considering what the others cannot do.

The memory at 8GB for a video iPod sucks. The end.

But I have to disagree with Phronk when you said that its a step backwards. What other phone has a completely touch screen interface that has the cool factor of OSX?

This is a phone that I actually want to own. I've hated all my phones and am bitter about getting ripped off by various cell phone plans. Are cell companies in Canada as shitty?

Phronk said...

Yeah, I guess the extra speed isn't entirely necessary. It's just that if I'm paying top dollar, I'd want top performance.

I say it's a step backwards because it leaves out features that even older phones have. Sure, it's a step forward in cool factor, and I drool over that too. It's just not worth over 10 times the price (to me) for a phone that looks better but does less.

I totally want to own one too...I'm just not willing to pay $600 for it.

Yeah cell phone companies probably suck even more in Canada. I don't think we even have ANY unlimited data plans. I have one of the cheaper data plans, and can't check my email more than twice a month without going over my limit and paying several dollars per web page.

Jennifer said...

I would just like to mention, I don't have a cell phone. And I still have a phone in my house that is ATTACHED TO THE WALL.

I am going to be that grandma who can't operate any of these newfangled gizmos.

Salem said...

I think it's outrageous what people will pay for telecom services, but maybe that's just me. Ya, it's got cool features, but $800 for a telephone? Not ever.

Harry J. Sachz said...

$600, not $800 salem... However, if you wanna pay $800, I've heard great things about Nokia's N95. It has everything that the iPhone doesn't, but lacks the touchscreen and slick factor. Plus you won't have to stand in line for 48 hours to maybe have an opportunity to own one.

Dani Kekoa said...

Hi Phonk - I just wanted to let you know that the latest WAW radio show is now avaliable for download (at your request) if you still want to check it out.


Unknown said...

If I'm going to pay $600+ bucks for a phone AND THEN pay a monthly fee afterwards... my plan better included free Blowjob minutes on night and weekends at least.

madamerouge said...

I'm with Jennifer.

sirbarrett said...

Yes, I was bitter about the iPhone too (and about losing my job at Rogers) way back in January.

The last paragraph of this article reiterates your point that the iPhone doesn't really offer anything new over and above the Blackberry Pearl which was out before the iPhone.

sirbarrett said...

Right, and I was going to give you the link in case you wanted to read the rest:

Shora said...

Man, I really gotta check your blog more often!

I've been at a tech conference all week, lots of iPhone talk... most of it the same points you make. And the fact that it ain't coming here until our carriers start offering unlimited data plans... which I ony just discovered is standard in the US. Let's raise our voices as one and demand a plan that doesn't charge per freakin' BYTE!!! IT'S MADNESS!!!

Anyway, yeah, I'm with you, LOVE the look of the iPhone, but I heart my Blackberry and I betcha in no time RIM is going to have a Blackberry that does all that any iWhatev can.

(PS. omg, you can download a radio of Dani and her ilk? *whole body shudder*)

Jason said...

I have a phone phobia. No joke. There is no me and an iphone ever.