The iPhone: Ten Things Apple Did Right, and Ten Things That Need Work
Ten Things Apple Did Right in the iPhone
- The display, the display, the display: Everything looks good on it.
- The menu design is simple and clean, and the home-screen icons look like so much eye candy.
- Fingertip navigation, zooming, and scrolling are intuitive, effective, and fast.
- Video playback is so good that you can tell when you've done a subpar job of ripping your movies.
- Visual voice mail lets you get to the calls you care about faster.
- The integrated applications--including Google Maps, YouTube, and a world clock that packs a timer, a stopwatch, and multiple alarms--are great.
- CoverFlow, which lets you choose your music by visually flipping through album art, is incredibly fun.
- The exterior is tough: Our initial stress tests suggest that the iPhone is more durable than you might expect for such a sleek handset.
- It's the first Apple music player with a built-in speaker--and the speaker isn't half bad for a phone component.
- You don't get a disconcerting "do not disconnect" message when syncing the iPhone with a PC.
Ten Things Apple (and AT&T) Did Wrong
- We want our AOL Instant Messaging--and Yahoo and MSN IM clients, too. What about MMS support for sending picture mail?
- There's no voice recording and, more importantly, no voice dialing support. How are you supposed to use an iPhone with a hands-free car kit?
- It's the most locked-down phone we've ever seen. You can't swap out the AT&T SIM card for one from another network; in fact, you can't even swap it out for another AT&T SIM card.
- AT&T is building out its mobile broadband network, but iPhone users are stuck with the company's older EDGE technology--or with battery-consuming Wi-Fi.
- You know those great headphones you already own? They won't fit the iPhones headset jack, so your first iPhone accessory will have to be a bulky, ugly $10 adapter.
- The software keyboard invites typos--and when you're entering passwords, there's no way of telling whether you've got them right until tyou get an "access denied" prompt.
- It's great that the iPhone can reorient pages in Safari, CoverFlow, and the photo album, but why not extend that capability to other apps such as e-mail? Some messages would benefit from a wide-screen display. And even when the device does reorient, it doesn't always follow through with all the attendant features: CoverFlow loses access to the volume slider, for example.
- There's no support for custom ringtones--surprising in a music phone.
- The camera is rudimentary, with no audio/video or even a zoom capability.
- You don't get to-do list support, a basic in most calendar applications.