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Apple iPhone two months later: Personal impressions

Published Sep 4th, 2007 12:10PM EDT

What is the most hyped-up consumer device to ever launch? If you said the i-mate JAQ, you’re wrong. It’s the Apple iPhone, and it has taken the general public by storm. People who would normally never ever consider buying an Apple product have went out and bought one (believe me, I conned 6 non-Apple users to buy one alone!), and everyone we talk to is still extaticly happy about their purchase. Sure there are some features we’d like to see added, and some things we’d like to see updated or changed, but for the most part, we’re still lovin’ it! The list below is something we threw together based on our personal experiences and obviously they may vary from person to person. Check them out below!

  • Pictures emailed from the phone directly are automatically re-sized to 640×480. There is no way of changing this. The only way to get the full picture off the device is connect it to a computer. Even sending to “Web Gallery” still only sends the 640×480 version. Then again, all that does is email the picture…
  • You can not delete individual call records in the call log.
  • You can not “search” for a contact in your contact list. You must manually scroll through them, or use the A-Z characters on the right side to skip through. This is a pain if you’re oh-so-popular like us and have thousands of contacts.
  • Speakerphone volume is practically unusable, yet when using the iPod, sound is much louder and completely audible.
  • Email application has no “mark all read”, you can’t delete multiple emails at once and Yahoo push is very unreliable.
  • Email seems to be never stored locally if you will, besides the inbox. When sending a large email on EDGE, and you check the outbox, the iPhone has to connect to even see the contents in the outbox. Same thing for sent mail folder — definitely annoying. On top of that, there isn’t a search feature, and we also don’t get that preview pane that was shown when the iPhone was announced at MacWorld. Would have been killer!
  • You can not send a text message to more than one recipient at a time, you can’t forward text messages, you don’t get a character count, and there are absolutely no configurable options for SMS.
  •  The default system sounds, and even ringer volumes are almost inaudible. We had to copy the system sounds, amplify the audio to the point it was almost clipping, then reload them back on the phone, just so we wouldn’t miss an Email, SMS, or phone call.
  • The camera shutter button is a little awkward. We would have loved it if it was almost transparent in the middle of the screen, or made use of a physical button on the side some how. We’ve come this close to dropping the phone while trying to take a flick! In addition, there are no options in the camera. Just take a picture, or view your camera roll.
  • We really miss Microsoft Exchange compatibility. No, IMAP doesn’t count, guys!
  • We’ve been through many, many units, and find it’s a crap shoot to get the “perfect” device. Some have glaring dead pixels, some of them have sub-par speakers (yes, even lower than God himself should allow), some have horrible battery life, and some devices have faulty screens. In addition, there is a huge debate rolling across the Internets on what screen is better. For anyone who doesn’t know, there are currently two types of screens on the iPhone: 5-series, and 7-series. The 7-series seem to be less bright, but has more contrast, yet has these very annoying dots in a checkerboard pattern if you look close enough. We prefer the 5-series screens. Also, we’ve found that 5-series screens will vary between each other, and the same for the 7-series.

Again, we’re not bashing the iPhone. With all the differences in production units, we still have to say that this is the greatest designed and constructed phone to ever hit the market. It is rock solid in terms of build quality. For the most part, most of these “shortcomings” if you will, aren’t even big deals for us. Also, almost 99% of what we listed can be fixed with a software update. Apple has bypassed the carrier, rolling out software updates at their leisure, and hopefully they’ll continue. I mean, come on…there have been two updates already! That’s unheard of, and we applaud Apple for having a direct distribution method to the consumer. We love the iPhone, and our initial impressions still hold true: if you are not completely focused on having a perfect email device (a BlackBerry, primarily), we say go with the iPhone. It makes using a phone pleasurable, and to tell you the truth, even after two months we still can’t put our iPhones down! If we missed something or you think we’re blatantly wrong somewhere, let us know. We want to hear how you all are liking or hating the device, and what you’d like changed or added!

Jonathan Geller Founder, President & Editor-in-chief

Jonathan Geller founded Boy Genius Report, now known as BGR, in 2006. It became the biggest mobile news destination in the world by the end of 2009, and BGR was acquired by leading digital media company PMC in April 2010.

Jonathan is President of the newly formed BGR Media, LLC., and Editor-in-chief of the BGR website.

What started as a side project at the age of 16, quickly transpired into 24-hour days and nights of sharing exclusive and breaking news about the mobile communications industry. BGR now reaches up to 100 million readers a month through the website, syndication partners, and additional channels.