iPhone 3G: Beyond the Distortion Field: Page 2

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Let’s come back to the software for a moment. Apple has managed to make the iPhone interface easy to use, but that comes at a price -- the sacrifice of features. The email client is still very basic, as is the calendar application. Basic features such as copy-and-paste still haven’t materialized and new features such as the GPS software seem to be far too simplistic to be of any real use.

Apple hopes that the soon-to-be opened App Store will help make up for the shortcomings of the built-in applications, but I’m not so sure that it will. If you’re going to rely on third-party software to make up for the shortfalls in the built-in firmware package, you might as well go with the Windows Mobile platform because the third-party software ecosystem is far more mature.

Then finally let’s examine that price cut. Apple’s tag line for the iPhone 3G is “Twice as fast. Half the price.” But, is this really the case? Twice as fast of course refers to the 3G network speed, which under ideal conditions is indeed twice as fast as Edge.

But what about the price? Well, an 8GB iPhone 3G costs $199, compared to the $399 price tag that the older model had. Sounds good so far. However, to coincide with the iPhone 3G launch, AT&T has added an extra $10 a month to the unlimited 3G monthly fees compared to EDGE, so over the 24 month period of the contract, that sets you back an extra $240.

$199 + $240 = $439. Half the price, indeed! That’s forty dollars more than the price of the current iPhone. (Oh, and that’s before you add the $99 per year for a MobileMe subscription.)

The iPhone seems like little more than a piggybank for you to put your money into -- and Apple to take it out. Come New Year you'll be wishing you'd waited to buy the revamped 32/64 GB version…

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Tags: iPhone, smartphones, Apple, RIM, OS X

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