The big distraction news this week is obviously the 3G iPhone launch. And one ZNF reader suggested I owe everyone an explanation as to why I’m not upgrading. It’s simple really – most of the features I’m looking for are found in the 2.0 software update. The main hardware improvements over my model include higher data connectivity speeds and integrated GPS functionality. While 3G is compelling, without SlingPlayer availability or a tethering option, it’s not enough to move me. Also, while the GPS functionality is a nice enhancement, triangulating my location via cell towers and WiFi access points (Skyhook) has never failed to orient me when on foot in New York City or San Francisco.
Overall, I’ve been relatively pleased with the first generation iPhone. It provides an elegant, fun, and sexy interface. And Apple has created the best mobile web browsing experience, by far. It’s also pretty good as a phone and video player. As an email power user, I’ve been slightly frustrated – deleting multiple messages has been tedious (past tense), it takes four taps to switch Inboxes, no contact search (past tense), and Apple still doesn’t provide cut & paste. I also find myself typing fewer and shorter emails due to the virtual keyboard, but that’s worked out fine. As an iPod, I find I prefer my (former) second generation iPod Nano.
Which brings us to the launch of the App Store. On my previously jailbroken device, I streamed audio from iRadio and MobileScrobbler… that I traded in today for free music streaming Pandora (above left) and AOL Radio (above right) applications. Both are lookin’ good and I’m now on the market for at least one iPhone speaker dock, perhaps two. Apple’s also provided a free virtual remote control app for iTunes and AppleTV, which I’ll try out at some point. Though, the multimedia app selection is still a bit light… We should see some promising new software within the next 6 months or so now that the flood gates have been opened.
Bonus coverage – Honda designed the perfect iPhone case:
Two postscripts… 1) While the iPhone is my primary handset, I’m holding onto my Nokia N95 and Treo 750. 2) Simultaniously clicking the top and bottom physical iPhone buttons takes a screengrab.