Home > Maemo, Meego, N900 > iPhone


iPhone Springboard

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.

App Installation

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.

Categories: Maemo, Meego, N900
  1. Campbell
    August 15, 2010 at 7:10 am

    Take the I phone for it is a fast simple way to do everyday things the only problems I have I upgraded to os4 on 3G big mistake reverting back this week so i can get my sanity back.

    • August 17, 2010 at 8:41 pm

      Agree with the you all that the iPhone is great for doing many simple things quickly. I got bit trying to transfer and open a txt file 😛

      @Campbell, downgrading the 3G is not restricted compared to the 3gS, right?

  2. johnpad
    August 15, 2010 at 10:39 pm

    I recently picked up a 3GS as a way to move from an N810/nokia cell phone combination. I miss the raw power of being able to play with any aspect of the system (and the 5mp camera), but I also realise the sheer amount of time I spent flashing and hacking the N810 to make it my own (not to mention the steep learning curve I went through on the 770). I can do more of the things I commonly need to do on the iPhone with the least effort.
    Email is good enough on the soft keyboard with some practice
    Browsing is okay (even with the lower screen resolution due to the intuitive zoom function)
    Calendar synchronisation is superb to both corporate and cloud accounts.
    Location aware apps such as maps are fast and simple

    I still miss gPodder, xournal etc. but it works well for me.

  3. August 22, 2010 at 6:11 am

    Good stuff.

  4. senote
    August 27, 2010 at 12:47 am

    I agree with the writer here, the iPhone doesn’t come close to the N900 for the power and freedom so I won’t be getting one, BUT I will be jumping to an Android or WinMo7 phone sooner rather than later simply because Nokia have handled the N900 so poorly that I no longer trust them.

    • August 28, 2010 at 4:19 am

      MeeGo holds promise. I would suggest giving “N9” a close look before jumping ship 🙂

  1. August 14, 2010 at 10:23 pm

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