by Brian Solis
36 hours later, I’m still enamored with the iPhone 3G and quite honestly, if it weren’t for Edge, I would also still be in love with the original iPhone.
There were reports that the upgrade and activation of the new phone was cumbersome or delayed, which unfortunately frustrated many early customers. And, as of this writing, the iPhone 2.0 firmware upgrade has been temporarily removed from Apple’s site until the team can figure out why it bricked first generation iPhones.
The first day with the the iPhone 3G was seamless. It was activated and functional almost instantly.
The the engineers brilliantly designed the back of the iPhone similar to shape of the Macbook Air, concealing the deepest point by curving the sides that meet it. It feels just a hair thicker and less durable – sort of like holding a Macbook and a Macbook Pro.
The metal backing has been replaced with sleek, glossy panel. I opted for the black model, although the white version is equally stylish and elegant.
Aside from cosmetic upgrades and my favorite new features, 3G connectivity is incredible. Not to go unmentioned, the new, much louder and clearer (and honestly, usable) speaker makes the iPhone usable in various environments. I’ve been streaming live music from the new Pandora iPhone app – which, at the moment, is my favorite download from the App Store. Other favorite apps include Evernote and Jott, although Jott would be a lot more effective if Jotts could be sent via email or if I could cut and paste the audio-to-text notes into other applications.
Another productive enhancement is the ability to send/receive email and also surf the Web while on the phone – especially while in use with the more powerful speakerphone functionality or if you’re wearing the new Jawbone. It brings multitasking to the iPhone for the first time. And, speaking of productivity, support for Microsoft Exchange is a more than welcome addition. OMG! You have no idea how I duct-taped my iPhone 1.0 to sync with email, calendar, and contact. Now, it’s seamless.
The GPS is also helpful and proven. You can actually see yourself traveling along Google Maps in real time.
After all of the rumors and teases over the last year, we’re still missing video and the ability to cut and paste. Fingers crossed that we’ll have a software update that will enable these capabilities soon. Ideally, what I’d expect in v 3.0 is two video cameras, one on the back and one on the front for broadband video conferencing.
All in all, I’m enthusiastic about the new iPhone and the new, friendlier AT&T packages.
UPDATE: Battery life is an issue for the power user. I suggest dimming the screen, setting it for manual sync, and also purchasing the Lenmar PowerPort – a USB power source that can fuel the iPhone several times over on a single charge. It’s just thinner and smaller than a v1 iPhone.
For additional pictures of the Apple iPhone 3G launch in San Francisco, please visit my album on flickr.