More iPhone notes

A few more thoughts on my iPhone, that I’ve jotted down since my earlier post:

  • I was pretty concerned about the iPhone form factor, specifically not being a flip phone. Previous “stick-style” phones have been a pain in the butt, dialing or otherwise doing random things in my pockets or Rochelle’s purse. The flip phone I’d been using most recently had convinced me that they were the only way to go. But the iPhone’s combination of a physical wake button and a virtual slider has worked perfectly so far, and I love how thin the phone is, feeling much better in my pocket than my old LG flip phone, in spite of being bigger in the other dimensions.

  • Although many people have complained about Cingular/AT&T’s network, and the general consensus seems to be that Verizon has the best US-based wireless infrastructure, my own experience has been that I get great reception, everywhere I’ve been, but especially in San Francisco. I last had AT&T Wireless service about 4 years ago, and reception in my own house at that time was pretty poor (that’s why I switched to Verizon). But these days it seems to be very, very good.

  • I want a version of 1passwd or Wallet on the device; not just integrated into Safari, but also as a separate application, to be able to carry my passwords around with me, in case I find myself at another computer. This is something that cannot be done with a web-based solution, I would never trust all my passwords to a web site.

  • I want to be able to prioritize my WiFi networks, by sorting them, so that of the networks that I come into contact with, I will use the best ones available to me, where “best” is defined by sort order. I’m not sure what process the iPhone uses to select a network, when it encounters several that it knows.

  • I really don’t want my entire Safari bookmarks list from my computer; overall I have thousands, and maybe half of them are seriously out-of-date. Cleaning them all up is certainly something I should do, but it’s a very large task, and not going to happen soon. I think that here’s a great opportunity for a feature upgrade in Mac OS X 10.5 (“Leopard”) and the new version of Safari that will accompany it. In any event, I would like to be able to create groups of bookmarks, and choose which groups to sync, just like I can with my playlists, photo albums, address book groups, etc.

  • I want (even) more tasteful, high-quality ringtones — rings that sound like phones, not song excerpts. The provided ringtones are wonderful, I just want more. I would be willing to pay for packs of them, ala the instrument packs that Apple offers for GarageBand. I’d hate to pay 99¢ each, unless I could preview and select them individually, but I’d be willing to buy packs of 25 for $10-15 per pack.

  • I bought an original Newton MessagePad, the day they were available. The difference between the Newton (awful, too-big form factor, low utility, ugly, slow, awful input method) and the iPhone (gorgeous, perfect size, extremely useful) could not be more extreme (though text input remains a limitation, I’m sure the virtual keyboard will prove better than handwriting recognition ever was). I think this is much more than just 10+ years of Moore’s Law and other technology advances; it’s very much an example of the effect of the taste and ability to focus that Apple has today.

  • The main area where the Newton outshone the iPhone is in having a developer’s kit and a way to put third-party software on it immediately. I’m certainly hopeful that will stop being an issue at some point, but I totally understand that Apple isn’t ready to release an SDK just yet. (Though I wish their explanation of the issue was less spin and more honest.)

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