Android Uncategorized - 26 January 2009
Author: Steve Davis

Boy Genius Report has recently done a great write-up on the Top 10 things they hate about the iPhone, but they aren’t the first or last to do so.  apcmag.com has one and so does A Liverpool Web Designer.  Why is my list different?  I’m not a cell phone techie or a windows mobile super user AND I do my best to not use my cell phone for work.  I don’t get good service in my office at work, so that makes it tricky to use it there.  I think BGR and the others did great lists, but there are some simple things that they definitely missed that relate to non-powerusers.  For some background, I was seriously debating getting an iPhone when my Blackjack started getting poor reception.  So i was looking around at my options and saw the Tilt at the AT&T store and I thought it was really cool!(which it is!) So i bought one and the next day saw news that the Fuze was coming out so I returned my Tilt. (After breaking the screen and replacing it but that’s a different story.)  And I work with a lot of iPhoneAddicts(not the people from the site, but actual addicts) so I got to hear it first hand how great the iPhone was when it came out, how great it still is, and how great it will forever be.  I’m still not impressed.  I may have gotten an iPhone if it weren’t for all the problems that BGR went over and that I still have.  Bash me all you want, but let me say the iPhone IS a great phone, its just not right for me and a few others who have problems with it.

Time for my list.  I’ll start backwards… well in order… at 10.

10.  iPhone(Apple) users.  Don’t get me wrong.  I like people, but iPhone people and Apple people are their own breed.  They always think that Macs are the best, Apple is the best company ever and the iPhone is the best thing since sliced bread.  They will push the iPhone on you until you hate everything Apple.  This includes you Walt Mossberg.  Apparently for the price you get one iPhone and a few pounds of smug to carry around with you. When the iPhone 3G came out I had to keep checking my phone to make sure I really did have 3G for years because the way it was advertised I was certain they were releasing something so new to the market I couldn’t have had it already.

9.  Applications made free for iPhones.  I can go over a lot of applications that come out for iPhone that are free and good, but were out for Windows mobile for years beforehand and were not free.  Shazam is out on Android and iPhone for free.  They came out with a program called “TagIt” in 2006, but that has disappeared and they only have the service for iPhone and Android or for people in the UK(no offense, US gets stuff first 9 times out of 10).  Pandora! Free for iPhone and its BIG NEWS, but its been out for Windows Mobile for a while, but you had to pay, which is not cool.  I’m sure there are more out there, but I cant think of them right now.  Those are the 2 big ones.

8.  Cut and Paste.  BGR is right, this is a big problem.  Just because the Macs dont have mice with 2 buttons doesn’t mean you need to cripple your iPhone to not be able to copy and paste! (I know you can right click NOW but that’s kind of new).

7.  1 word, Flash.  Skyfire has recently given Windows mobile users the benefit of Flash websites.  I’d expect the best phone in the world to do the same.  Flash mobile has been out for a while, but what sites recognize flash lite 3.1 or mobile 7?  And Safari is constantly touted as the best browser. The numbers are simple – SkyFire loads WebPages much faster than Safari plus you get the real internet (yeah, with Flash, etc).  Oh and congrats iPhone you finally have more choices.

6.  Non-Replaceable battery.  Now sure, the iPhone battery will last FOREVER, but what if it doesn’t?  What if I want more than the 5 hours of 3G talk time Apple specs out?  What if i want a high-capacity battery without cracking it open or putting a strange case on it?  Given most phones will get thicker with a bigger battery, but you don’t have to void your warranty or use a case you don’t want to use.  This really goes to the core of how Apple makes money. The original Mac cases could not be opened so you would be forced to buy a new computer and there was no ‘upgrading’. The iPods also have a non-replaceable battery. The reason is simple – when the battery dies this forces you to buy the newest version and since everyone loves Apple they shell out more money ever year for a slight upgrade. This may also explain why other items on this list are here; it gives Apple a reason to release iPhone v3. And don’t even get me started on the proprietary plug instead of mini-USB which is now becoming standard for PDA’s

5. Multitasking.  There is some misconception about this and theiPhoneBlog has a good write-up about it and the deal is that Apple only allows its own apps(mail, phone, etc) to multitask.  3rd party apps cant.  I’ll get into that in #4.

4. Install whatever i want without jailbreak.  So with Windows Mobile, not only can i edit the registry, but I can install WHATEVER I WANT without jailbreaking my phone and potentially bricking it.  I find it hard to believe that they can demand the price they do and lock your device entirely and not get heat for it. If Windows did the same thing they would get destroyed for it.

3a.  The Screen. I hate hearing that the iPhone has such a beautiful screen. Guess what? I can see pixels. All of them. If I pick up my Fuze I don’t see any thanks to the glory that is VGA. I’m sure Apple will release a VGA screen and then I’ll hear all of the media hype about how it’s the sharpest screen ever even though we all know the Touch HD has the same dimensions with a higher resolution.

3b.  The User Interface. The user interface of the iPhone is merely an application launcher and if you want more than that or a different look then Apple will tell you to look elsewhere or wait for their next latest and greatest release. It is literally nothing more than a page of shortcuts and people love the simplicity and entire lack of actual interface. And the intentional minimalist look for the iPhone (with a single hard button) also breeds this inefficiency. If you’re in an application and want to use the phone there’s no ‘phone’ button. You have to go home then launch the phone.

2. Customization of icons/themes/skins/BACKGROUND again without jailbreak.  Just about every phone on XDA has a thread for “post your today screen”.  For the iPhone, those forums need to be in the jailbreak sections.  How hard would it be to make it standard to be able to have custom icons and skins?  And changing the background  was one of the bigger gripes I had when looking for a phone.  It may not sound like much, but I want to do what I want to do.  Why do I need to conform to what Apple wants?  The name iPhone is a misnomer. It should be Steve’s Phone because he found some settings he likes and told you to like them too

1.  MMS.  Why cant i sent a MMS to my friends who have iPhones?  When I ask them, they just say “email it to me”.  Well I don’t want to.  I can MMS pictures to my other friends, I’m not going to make an exception for my iPhone friends.  You CAN get a MMS app for the iPhone, but you need to again Jailbreak it and then you’re good to go.

These reasons alone weren’t why I got the Fuze, but they did help in the long run.  Hopefully you weren’t swayed by the hype and advertising like everyone else.  What’s #1 on your list?

And if you are interested in what an iPhone can do when you jailbreak it, check out this link wouldn’t it be nice if it could do some of that right out of the box? Like a Windows Mobile phone?

Let the bashing begin…

-SCDavis









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(3) Readers Comments

  1. Dude, no doubt. I have been a tiltoholic for the past year or so and have found it to be way easier to use than the Iphone. I’ve flashed, installed, edited the registry, etc, but the first time I touched an iphone it was too alien to me. I tried to Jailbreak it and that was creepy, tried to install mp3s for ringtones but had to install ssh-server (wtf). I believe the iphone will be a great phone once they actually change the design and open the software up a bit. On a side note, my first experiance with a mac book, the damn thing froze up and gave me errors and then turned off. WinXP ftw

    love the site

  2. Great post!
    I likeds many of the things, and I have few things to add:

    http://mobilespoon.blogspot.com/2008/12/iphone-thoughts-week-2.html

    On the other hand, I’m still enjoying the iPhone a lot.

  3. agree with many of these points. For me reasons 1 / 2/ 3 / 4

    a. stylus – I have large hands and fingers

    b. cut and paste

    c. Flash video inop

    d. sometimes cant read the ultra fine type – should have a global digital zoom.