I don’t know that the average mobile consumer knows or cares but the iPhone is a surprisingly closed platform. You’d think with the massive volume of applications and sales that it would naturally be open, but like all Apple products there are rules and the best oportunities are left for the house.
As I mentioned on my previous post, there is no way to get native multitasking going with a 3rd party application. For most people this is a non issue, but the more advanced consumer will definitely find limits with push notices. There is no way to stream last.fm or pandora while web browsing or emailing … No way to upload a picture through ShoZu or pixelpipe while snapping another. These are things I have been accustomed to for years yet are completely blocked on the iPhone. Apple’s solution is to email a reduced size picture from the camera roll instead of allowing 3rd party apps to help out. On the music side of course you have your iPod which plays anywhere.
Application amd network limits are another point of interest. Sling and Qik have yet to make an appearance yet MLB was able to offer 3G as well as wifi access to the games of your choice. The iTunes application will not let you download over wifi yet tap tap revenge is quite happy to let you download new tracks over 3G as I experienced last night. These network blocks seem to be the result of a carrier deal by AT&T here in the US and it’s definitely a cop out on a less than ideal network rollout. The fact that the new iPhone happily seemlessly switches to AT&T wifi at starbucks and other locations is no miracle … It is providing relief to the network strain the iPhone has brought.
The iPhone truly does offer a remarkable experience for a handheld device yet it also seems to be blocked of things other devices have either long been capable – even those offered by the very same AT&T. I know similar blocks exist in other markets as well …
While we all accept the “Apple Tax” on pricing of hardware the limits on the software and services side are unique to the iPhone. The basic BS limits you find on carrier delivered devices have simply been switched around for a new set offered by Apple instead. It’s curious how most tend not to be bothered by these restrictions … Presumably based on the superior level of finish and user experience no one wants to give back.
I’d really just like to have it all.
(btw I tapped this out in the wordpress iPhone app)