While I am ready to be surprised, I just can’t see racing out to get the new iPhone. Last year I waited in line, had a blast, (was tortured by activation) and generally enjoyed using the iPhone but after an initial honeymoon phase (3months) I moved on and have really not looked back. It’s been about a year since the iPhone was released and I’m reflecting on the most popular post I’ve ever written.
I think I should reiterate that I am not a normal user. I am a power user and push devices to their limits frequently. I have given this some considerable thought lately thanks to the influence and full effect of the hype machine. For me, and I would imagine a lot of other mobile power users, the iPhone lacks some key details and features we have had for years. Some of these things are likely to equalize but from what I have seen in both current applications and the leaks from the SDK my needs appear to be best met elsewhere.
I have yet to meet a mobile device whose battery can last as long as I need in a day – including the iPhone and I’d expect HSDPA to have the similar battery crushing power it has on other devices. I’ve had good to excellent photo and video capture on my handsets for several years and am not willing to give that up, period.
In the US 3G is still new so that’s a push, but …the applications, local storage, over the air downloading, 5MP camera with Flash, video recording, java, flash in the browser, enhanced bluetooth profiles (keyboards and stereo headsets) are all key pieces to what I look for and need. I often keep applications (other than email and music) running in the background. Cut and Paste are also things I use many times a day …
The browser of course still remains the golden ticket for the iPhone. The manner in which pages load and render on the large auto-rotating screen is excellent and has yet to be contested on a phone in my experience. The iPhone’s email client with HTML is also very strong.
While the application store is going to be a big deal, the trick for the iPhone will be how to prevent the user from getting in the way. What I mean by this is how do you manage more than a handful of icons in the iPhone UI. Looking at my father’s iPhone recently he had two full screens of icons for all of his bookmarks, I mean web apps. My wife’s device has been handled by the kids and is a mess as well. When additional applications arrive the desire to try will be high for many. The more you add the more complicated it gets and the less bullet-proof the experience becomes.
The iPhone’s greatest success has been the broad mass awareness (and relative adoption) of mobile connectivity and I am grateful for that. I hope that the next generation continues to push things as we all stand to benefit.
Things might change on Monday … I’ll be watching just like everyone else!