Monday, 11 June 2007

The Apple (2G) iPhone Hype

The hype surrounding the Apple iPhone is now in full swing, but apart from the new ads and the information on the Apple site, not many details are currently available. It seems that very few people have actually used one. I'd certainly like to try one out, if only to see what the multi-touch screen and soft keyboard are like. They way the technology is presented in the ads, it all seems easy and seamless, as you would expect in an Apple ad. I must say that I love the idea of having mobile web, iPod and phone is one beautifully designed package. It seems like it's been a long time coming.

I do have some reservations about this first release. According to the tech specs, it's basically a GSM phone with Wi-Fi capability for wireless data. In the U.S. it will support Cingular’s EDGE network. I can understand the business reasons behind this decision but can't help but be disappointed that the first release will not be 3G. I could be wrong about that here in Australia, it'll be interesting to see what the network arrangements are in Australia when the iPhone is eventually released here. This is not going to be until next year I believe. It seems clear that it won't be running on a 3G network, unless Apple releases a different version here.

Considering the capacity of current iPods, it's also a little disappointing that the storage capacity is going to be 4GB and 8GB. Having said that, it's easy to forget that this is still great compared to most other mobile phones on the market – and it is a iPod.

In the interests of full disclosure, I need to say that I currently own a Nokia 7710. Telstra gave this to me in return for testing out a mobile tv service just before they launched their 3G network. I've also worked with Nokia (on some 3G marketing demos) in their FutureLab in Sydney, so I'm pretty attached to Nokia phones, even though their compatibility with Macs has always been a issue.

The crux of the matter for me is that I like Apple products, I've been buying them for years (and years), and I like Nokia phones. I'd love to be able to say I have no reservations about jumping in and buying an iPhone as soon as they are released, but at the moment I'm not so sure. I'd love to have a 3G iphone that syncs seamlessly with my Mac, but it looks like I might have to wait quite some time for that situation.

What are your thoughts on the iPhone?


Craig said...

Everyone is talking about how the phone will not have 3G, but 3G is not fully rolled out in the US and it will be about 2009 before it is.

If your web browsing - you could not really tell the diffence in speeds. Although doing video calls on the edge network will not work- but the phone does not support that (yet) so...

Most devices like this have a 18 month expected life span before people buy a upgrade so I think the 3G support is not going to be a issue.

Mr Azza said...

I'm not that fussed about the lack of 3G support. The time will come when they integrate a format that the australian market can support.

I'm looking at the iPhone as the first true WiFi based phone. Considering I'm almost always in a WiFi enabled environment I'll happilly use the cheaper and more reliable land based internets rather than the expensive and varying mobile networks stuffs..

jj said...

Thanks for your convincing comments. I'm certainly going to consider it some more between now and when they come out in Australia. I may not be able to resist when they do.

Stan Lee said...

Shortly after the iPhone was announced, a key Telstra exec rubbished it. They said Telstra would not be supporting it.

I thought this was not only unecessary, but also very odd, given we will not have the iPhone in Oz till early 2009.

However further reading revealed the Telstra spokesman as saying Nokia, Ericsson, Samsung etc are all superior to iPhone.

Reading between the lines, this was Telstra trying to deflate Apple hype, and at the same time be seen to be supporting their handset partners.

2009 is 18 months away. In that same time frame iPods went from 5gb to 40gb. Then from music players to movie players.

I suspect the iPhone we get will be different from the about to be launched US model. Guess we'll just have to wait and see...