FOR THREE YEARS, I have used a multitouch routine on the touchscreens of SonyEricsson mobile phones. Although that's a reliable way for someone to maneuver on a menu with small fingers, most people need the tactile response of a keypad to blaze through return messages. I'm extremely interesting in how Apple's EUR 695 (the estimated price in Europe after it gets a 3G antenna, if you can get it as a SIM-free model) iPhone takes the concept to a different level. With 2006's technolust tsunami lapping at his back, Steve Jobs wants to "do a leapfrog product that's way smarter than these phones and much easier to use. So we're going to reinvent the phone." There is some reality distortion at work here. His iPhone does not use a keyboard, nor does it use a stylus, have a removeable memory slot or work over 3G, as do the SonyEricsson products. This means the phone has to appeal to fewer than 10% of the mobile phone market because most people need time-tested functionality in their mainstream communications devices. That doesn't phase Apple. "We're going to use the best pointing device in our world," Jobs says, pointing to his fingers. Kottke favours a device without keys too but I wonder if that's actually a death knell for a mobile communications device.
How can Apple's Multitouch be more accurate than touchscreens on current multimedia phones? This I have to touch. I've never tried texting pressing real buttons. I've never depended on an easily-scratched screen. But I've never had such a sweet collection of services on one device.
Yahoo! Mail (my mail) comes bundled with the iPhone and it comes with full synchronization AND the address book integrated to the phone itself. Unfortunately, the push mail services look to be limited to stateside carriers.
The phone also comes with Yahoo! oneSearch, an entirely new search service designed around Y! Answers.
I'm a little skeptical, because I don't hear the voice of Russell Beattie in the wings. This would be a perfect time for Russell's Notebook to resurface.
As a widescreen iPod, the iPhone's touch controls lets users tap onto music selections by easily scrolling through entire lists of songs, artists, albums and playlists with just a flick of a finger. Album artwork is presented on iPhone’s large and vibrant display.
Podcasters that present material without cover art will look naked on iPhone because it uses Cover Flow, Apple’s way to browse your music library by album cover artwork.
If you want to watch TV shows, iTunes videos or movies on the iPhone, you can use touch controls for play-pause, chapter forward-backward and volume.
The iPhone will sync content from a user’s iTunes library on their PC or Mac. I think it's only a matter of time before after-market software lets you drag and drop content from a Vista machine onto an iPhone.