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Apple’s iPhone One Month Later: Plenty More Practical Than You Thought It Would Be
Roughly a year ago, when I first heard that Apple was developing a phone, I was slightly intrigued but not set on it being my next phone. Then, I found out that AT&T, then Cingular, was going to be the carrier… I signed up for e-mail updates from AT&T. I basically decided that I was going to wait for the iPhone to be available to upgrade. But then June 29th rolled around…and I found myself completely disinterested. Too much money, the hype was making the phone absurdly urgent and I just felt like…I really don’t even care about phones that much.

I think my brother has made me hate phones. When you live with your 13 year old kid brother, who likes the Yankees (particularly Giambi) and thinks that he really is into electronics (iPods and the like)…you hear a lot about cell phones. The kicker about this age group is that they really know nothing about how electronics work. I spent hours on the computer on December 25, 2006 trying to teach someone who is disinterested in learning, how to synch his new iPod to the computer and add songs. He currently has what I call “the Zoolander phone”, the super-tiny Pantech camera phone. His wallpaper is currently a picture of him with Hooters girls. The kid likes to think he can stunt.

It really irritates me when anyone, 13 year olds included, try to replace confidence with something else…be it electronics, clothes…whatever…you get what I am saying. Phones are a primary item that people use to try to represent themselves…and truthfully, some of the poorest people I know have the best phones. And that is cool…do whatever you want, but I can’t be sympathetic when they seem to be the people always telling me about how much debt they have, how broke they are…etc.

On July 11, 2007…13 days since the release of the iPhone. I changed my mind. I decided it was probably worth it. Large purchases, for me, are nothing if not impulsive and I’m sort of sorry to say that this was not really as impulsive as it could have been. But the Megatrondon’s iPhone review revealed to me, for the first time, that it could actually be a practical “investment” that would, in fact, increase efficiency. Wesley Case bluntly advised me that it was stupid to invest money at age 21 (although, I still think Certificate of Deposits are a great, stable short term option!). And really…it’s better that I bought the phone with the $500 than on my notorious summer shopping spree in New York City (although, that might still happen).

For all the urgency related to the release date, there is a secret about Apple products that actually make them worth getting soon after the release date: The first and/or earlier generation always seems to be the best. For example, with the iPod, the earlier generations were not only better made but came with all the amenities needed, aside from a car adapter. Additionally, the packaging design gets increasingly less impressive. It seems as though Apple really knows what is going on without feedback from consumers. If you read any Apple support message board you will see some of the worst people ever complaining about shit that CLEARLY does not matter. So, this created my own urgency to get the first generation of the phone. And now there is already talk about how they will be coming out with a cheaper version. Although, this is supposed to be a cheaper option, I’m sure that Apple will make something on the current iPhone additionally plastic to make it lighter…and I hate that shit.

Since my first phone in 2001, I have had more Nokia phones than any other brand. They are dependable, have good battery life, and a simple interface. These are the primary aspects of a phone that I am concerned with..secondarily, however, I do like my phone to be aesthetically pleasing and have buttons that are comfortable. This is the subjective basis on which I will be judging the iPhone. Also, please note that a huge reason I really went through with the purchase is because I have an Apple computer.


Unlike the majority of people that will briskly contemplate an iPhone in an AT&T or Apple store, I trust Apple. I have had an iPod since 2004 and a MacBook since July 2006 and have had both serviced/repaired while under warranty. Their customer service is nothing less than impeccable…possibly to make up for widespread irrational doubt of their products or maybe they truly believe in something…which would be just as douchey as it is endearing. Basically, I’m an Apple customer, not a self proclaimed MacGenius that totes my computer to every wireless hotspot in this hemisphere.

Debit card in hand, I felt comfortable dropping 500 on an Apple phone because I know if something happens to it, I can easily take it to get repaired. Whereas with a Treo, Blackberry, or Sidekick…I’m positive that I would either end up with a replaced phone or shit out of luck. Most would prefer a replaced phone which I’ve never quite understood.

If anything, I would say that the iPhone’s interface may even be an homage to the Nokia interface with regard to simplicity. The set-up of the main screen reminds me of the immutable Nokia menu with each component being represented by a symbol…but clearly a true upgrade from the Nokia with better design and ease of use. As with all Apple products, the transitions that occur while navigating through the interface from menu to feature are very smooth and manage to distract the user as they wait by entertaining them with improved graphic transitions.


The first inclination I had that phones might go in a buttonless direction was with the LG Chocolate phones: a slider phone that integrated “touch buttons”. I had two friends that had the “black chocolate” (?!), the touch buttons seemed to be their favorite feature. I think its some sort of mental thing that humans have…somehow just touching something and getting a response is easier than pressing a button and getting the same response. Biologically speaking, we are on to something…it does, in fact, require the use of more muscles (and therefore a small increase in energy) to apply force to a button than it does to simply place a finger on a designated area.. Touch, although one of the most important and versatile senses, also tends to be the least rewarding and skill requiring…

Apple is undoubtedly concerned with ideas. Releasing a buttonless phone was a huge risk for Apple to take. But not an unexpected type of risk from people who are concerned with a niche market that tends to be far from the “average” sensibility. It is conceptually complicated in a way that could be completely disastrous if not perfected. But perfecting innovation to a marketable level is something that Apple tends to frequently achieve.

I didn’t try the iPhone in the store before I bought it. I felt sort of weary about it being difficult to type on the keyboard. Upon trying it, it definitely works better than you would think that it would. It seems to respond to where the center of your finger is placed which is a skill that is quickly learned.

Keeping in mind that the iPhone is truly capable of multiple features that my previous Nokia phone was not, the battery life seems to be substantial. On the first run, it made it two and a half days without streaming video or playing music through the iPod feature. I tend to not really use the video/iPod capabilities. Maybe I’ll use these features more when I get back to school. Even so, the battery was quick to charge.

Before I purchased the phone, I read online that it is a honking $79 to replace the battery. I’m not sure what to make of this…other than to think that I will deal with that when I get to it and maybe report back on how much it sucks.

Other Notable Features
-As with all Apple products, the brightness is unmatched. I’m sure this takes away from a potentially more efficient use of the battery but…worth it. The sleep button may redeem the inefficient use by allowing the phone to be put to sleep whenever the user decides. So…basically, if you have your brightness jacked…you can shut the phone off so that you can enjoy every eye straining-ly bright moment the battery has to offer.

-The Safari browser and Calendar are my two most used applications on my computer. Safari has become my favorite browser even though it ends up not working with many secure sites and calendar helps me to organize all the crap I have to do. My very frequent use of calendar is certainly a reason that I chose the iPhone. I’m not sure how this works with Windows, but I can directly synch all of my bookmarks from Safari and all of my Calendar events when I hook my phone to my computer.

Written by Monique

August 7th, 2007 at 3:37 pm

Posted in iPOD, iPhone

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  1. Also just to through a stereotype back @ you, how come white people want to be black? With fake tans and ghetto language ect. Tis awfully sad :(

    Aisleyne Horgan Wallace

    22 Nov 10 at 2:32 pm

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