Moving into the 21st century with my iPhone

Palm III

Remember this post, where I described the things I always travel with? My faithful Palm III PDA was one of them.

I celebrated my birthday recently and the guys at work gave me my present last week: an iPhone...!

Peter loves his iPhone

I could not believe it. I had been looking at an iPhone for ages, glued to the window like a kid in front of a candy story. And finally, I had one.

My team said "We know how attached you are to your Palm III, but you can not really head a technology team using a 1997 piece of 'wannabe PDA'... So we're bringing you into the 21st century"...

It is true, in a way. At work, we have a "museum"glass cupboard displaying all pieces of old technology we used in the past 20 years. From a manual of WordStar (remember that?) to old VHF radios, a keyboard from a 1970's IBM mainframe and... a Palm III. Many people could not believe my faithful Palm III survived all the travel, the dust roads I drove on, all the remote places I've been to, and all the emergency operations I have served in. It stored my agenda with appointments going back to 1997. It held all the business contacts of people I met in the past 12 years, and all the notes I took while on mission. And it still did its job.

So I spent much of last weekend exploring my brand new iPhone 3GS, figuring out how to use it and the applications I wanted.

Here is my rundown of the things I love about it:
  • the user interface, the way the different applications are working
  • its display (it is color, yay!), the resolution, the touch screen
  • the integration of wireless LAN connectivity and all web applications is out of this world
  • the speed in which it discovers and registers to wireless LANs.
  • the vast amount of applications you can download
  • the speed of the applications
  • the quality of pictures and video is great. I always cursed the poor quality of both on my old Nokia phone. Just this is a real plus for me, as it will make the iPhone a great tool to take ad hoc snapshots to post on my blog.
  • for the first time, I can have all I wanted of a PDA, iPod, compact digital camera/videocam, telephone,.. in one
  • I can Twitter, Skype, Email etc... to my heart's content, which for a social media addict like me is a definitive plus
The things I would like to have improved:
  • it seems Bluetooth is not used to connect the iPhone to the computer's iTunes. I need to have the cable (or did I miss something here?). I also seem to have problems to get my computer pick up the Bluetooth connection from my iPhone and vice versa.
  • iTunes is heavy on a PC (maybe I should finally by a Mac?), it is slow, takes ages to load, and has a horrible user interface. It seems to only be a beefed up version of a music library, but does not feel intuitive at all.
  • I also hated the fact I needed to register my credit card while subscribing to the iTunes store. Even if I did not want to buy anything...
  • the battery runs down in less than 24 hours
  • I did not find a way to define the resolution for the camera.
  • and the worst part, unfortunately, is the "phone" part of the iPhone: its GSM sensitivity is ways below what my Nokia offers. In a GSM-signal poor country like Italy, this means I no longer have coverage where I used to have it. And that includes my apartment. A real bummer.
  • it took some tweaking to have the phone work on data-over-GSM. Luckily some hacker-friends gave me a patch where I could define the data-configuration for my GSM carrier, but somehow this should have been more transparent for the user.
More to come. But for the time being, I love the iPhone, if they could only increase the GSM sensitivity! Thanks again guys! You should not have done this...


Vagabondblogger 28 October, 2009 15:51  

Buy a Mac and you'll enjoy your iPhone even more. Also, many of the Apps are free and you should check them out, as well. I was resistant about getting one for a long time. My family talked me into getting an iPhone, and I love it.

Peter 28 October, 2009 18:44  


Yep, think a Mac should be the next step ;-))


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