I got my hands on an iPhone 3gS so out of curiosity, I have been using it for the past week just to see what the fuss has been all these years. When I received the phone, I couldn’t use it because it was iOS 4.0 and not jailbroken. Since I am with T-mobile, I couldn’t use it until the ingenious JailBreakMe.com online jailbreak came out. Unlocking was simply a matter of installing the free Ultrasn0w from the Cydia store.
So after a week of usage, here are my thoughts about the “Jesus” phone.
Blows the Maemo UI out of the water with its ease of use. Although the Springboard is limited to App-Launchers, it is just great to look at, simple and fast.
Nothing much to say here. The App ecosystem is huge and a smashing hit. A lot of them are great but a whole lot of them are mere substitutes for websites.
Installation from the App Store was fast. There was almost no lag switching desktops even when an app was being installed. This is a serious plus against Maemo which comes down to a crawl during an install from the Ovi Store.
Turns out that the Netflix servers can be tricked into streaming movies simply by changing the Safari user-agent to iPad’s UA on jailbroken iOS 4. This was awesome!
Exchange worked flawlessly with GMail. This made the temporary transition to the iPhone very easy.
Thats about it. Every thing else about the iPhone just made me miss the N900.
- The 3 MP camera does not come close to the N900’s.
- Multi-tasking is not intuitive.
- Moving photos, music and videos was not a matter of simply dropping folders. So that sucked by epic proportions.
- Tethering was not simple
- No integration of contacts with IM/Skype and SIP
- Keyboard! My typing speed on the on-screen keyboard was reduced drastically causing me to eschew texting and email as much as I could.
- Task Manager. I couldn’t find a way to see what tasks were running. I guess I am just spoiled like that.
- File Manager. It was also surprising that Apple has chosen to keep its file-system away from the user. This is just unacceptable.
Overall, I feel that the simple, pretty and dumbed down UI of the iPhone is the reason for its mass appeal. Its tight integration with iTunes leaves Linux users dry. Moreover, Apple’s SHSH blob verification controls on downgrading the firmware is appalling!
Anyway, I will be reverting to my N900 next week and let the wife run with the iPhone. The N900’s raw power and freedom is simply irresistible.