Friday, July 11, 2008

3G iPhone

200807 iphone app storeImage by superciliousness via FlickrToday saw the launch of the 3G iPhone, my contract isn't due for renewal for a few more months so I wasn't stood in line waiting to receive the goodness. So what is all the fuss about and is it really that good?

I'll start with the Apple Application Store which launches yesterday with "more than 500" applications for the iPhone and iPod touch. Of these, 25% will be free and 90% (of those for sale) will cost $9.99 or less. Early indications are that the Facebook iPhone Application is very good, TechCrunch considering it to be indispensable within the next few months.

This would be an Application that I would use heavily and reading how you may never need to use the 'Phone' icon again if you use the Facebook app as you just tap a friend and you can call/email them. Obviously your friend will have needed to have entered the contact information into their profiles.

What is even better is that the application will become location aware, as TechCrunch detail ~

Joe Hewitt has also suggested on Facebook’s blog that the application will also become location-aware within the next few months:

The first version of Facebook for iPhone is just a glimpse of the future. For instance, the iPhone has the ability to find where you are located, and we are looking for ways to let you opt-in to share your location and discover nearby friends. We’re developing this and several other exciting new features that we’ll release in the coming months.

Sounds impressive and I am sure there are many more applications that warrant an install. This for me is the main reason to buy the 3G iPhone over any phone on the market at the moment as the potential is massive. The downside in using the 3G, WiFi, Bluetooth, location services, third party applications etc is the impact it has on the battery life. Early reports are that this is an aspect of the iPhone that Apple should have nailed. Okay in future they could introduce a battery with better life but surely this will have an impact on the size as we have seen in the past.

Another aspect for me that I would have liked to have seen introduced is the ability to send MMS. Sending images make up a big part of my phone use, using my current phones camera to capture the moment says a lot more than any text message. It's a standard feature in the majority of phones now so why Apple choose to neglect this is a surprise. This also raises question marks over the camera as it's only 2 mega pixel and there is no option for video capture. There will be no application released which will be able to resolve this issue either.

I will give the 3G iPhone serious consideration when my contract is up for renewal, the Apple App store is what it's all about and the introduction of a FriendFeed Application will convince me further! In regards to the camera I am looking to move from a phone with a camera to a fully function camera anyway as the image quality is on a whole other level. That said the lack of MMS is really disappointing!

Apple have raised the bar and it will be interesting see what the competitors can do to convince the consumers there is more out there. I am full of envy of those who have the iPhone already, although I am happy that I waited considering the launch problems experienced with activation. Will Apple eventually dominate the market with the iPhone like they do with the iPod? Only time will tell but the momentum is building...

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