I will say that there are two things about the "hard" controls on the iPhone I find pleasing. First, the headphone jack is 3.5mm, a "standard" size, not that 2.5mm silliness. So you can conceivably use the headphones that come with your iPhone on, well, your iPod, or whatever. Second, the iPhone is using the standard iPod dock. That Dock connector is important to the iPod, so the fact that Apple kept it for the iPhone is A Good Thing. You don't have to assume too hard to think that by keeping the same Dock Connector, the early adopters of the iPhone should be able to take advantage of the rich set of iPod accessories, and the OEMs of said accessories should, in a lot of cases, get iPhone support for free. That's pretty sweet for both sides.
Using iTunes as the computer application for synching makes sense. People are used to it, they already use it to sync non-music things to their iPods, and it means the next major release of iTunes should be pretty interesting. If Apple can keep that sync process as painless for the iPhone as it is for the iPod, especially if you can do it not just via USB and Bluetooth, but via Wi-Fi as well, they'll be cleaning ActiveSync's, (or whatever it's called in Vista) clock. No one was happy with Microsoft yanking Wi-Fi support in ActiveSync and blaming it on "security." Sorry, but you can't tell me that BlueTooth is a Gibralterian Rock of security and Wi-Fi is Charminesque in comparison.
I can't compare the iPhone's version of Safari to anything but the Treo browser and IE in WM (I've never used Opera on either of my phones), but I can tell you, it looks tons better. Not that being better than either of those two is particularly hard. In general, reading web pages with IE on my phone is...painful, especially when IE gets done rendering a page, then pops a dialog to tell me it couldn't find/load the page. "So then what's that page you just loaded?" Yeesh.iPhone and AJAX
At the keynote, looking at the Google and Yahoo people on stage (the less said about Cingular CEO Stan Sigmans speech the better it was a flashback to watching the second string high school debate team), and thinking about the kvetching about "Apple not allowing third party applications on the iPhone," I realized what Apple is doing, even if it's unintentional.
The iPhone is going to be huge for people doing work with AJAX. Think about it. Safari (more so in the WebKit builds than in the Mac OS X 10.4 version), is going to enable the iPhone to run AJAX web applications far better than IE on WM can now. (I can't type "Treo Browser running AJAX" without giggling.) And if you look at companies like Zimbra, and others who are really pushing the limits of AJAX, the iPhone is tailor-made for them. I really think the iPhone is going to be a major player for AJAX applications, because it will be the fastest, easiest way to get your stuff on an iPhone without having to go through some major approval process with Apple.