The Boy Genius is out with his top ten iPhone annoyances. While several can be filed as minutiae that won’t bother most folks to any great extent, I’ve yet to meet the perfect handset. The iPhone is no different, possessing a variety of quirks and limitations. But, before I get to my list of shortcomings, it’s worth mentioning that I’ve used the first generation EDGE iPhone as my primary mobile for over a year. Longer than any other smartphone I’ve owned. And I’ve owned quite a few. The iPhone is both fun and functional. Plus, despite AT&T’s periodic coverage and connectivity issues, my $20 data plan with 200 SMS bucket is still one of the best deals out there. On to the complaints!
The iPhone has a large, beautiful screen and would make a killer PMP. In fact, it’s advertised as such. And does work well as long as you remain within Apple’s (iTunes) ecosystem. But forget it if your video (or audio) originate elsewhere. H.264 is becoming a video standard, yet there’s all sorts of other video files/codecs out there. It’d be nice if my phone supported some them natively, without tedious transcodes. Heck, I’d even pay for a third party video player (as we’ve seen on other mobile platforms)… if only Apple would allow such a thing.
I’m still amazed that such a modern platform can only do one (third party) thing at a time. Apple’s made the point that they don’t want countless background processes running, dragging down the system. But how about just one? Let me listen to Pandora, Slacker, or Flycast while checking my email. Or run a persistent IM client.
Apple wasn’t the first to allow third party software, but they were the first non-carrier to provide a simple, centralized location for accessing these programs. And I don’t think anyone can question the success of their App Store. Yet with so many apps out there, we need a better way to organize our downloads. Folders may or may not be the answer, but I’d like to some sort of improved method for arranging, grouping, and hiding icons. Including the native iPhone apps.
The Other Stuff
Here’s a few nits to round out my list of complaints requests… It’s been beat to death, but cut & paste is a no-brainer. I’ve managed to live without it. But it’d sure be a nice enhancement. And how about letting me attach multiple photos to an email message? I assume true turn-by-turn navigation is on the way, and that might motivate me to upgrade to the iPhone 3G. Lastly, while I may not need a unified inbox as BG suggests, it should take fewer than 4 taps to switch Inboxes.