I am one of the lucky 500,000: I've got an iPhone.

By July 06, 2007
Keywords : Smart city, Mobile, Wifi, Europe

The first thing I noticed right out of the box is that the iPhone is thinner that what I expected. The second thing is the incredible quality of the screen resolution and the third is how “greasy” were my fingers and my ear!   As

many, I decided to queue in front of an AT&T store on Friday, June 29th. This wasn’t the good strategy since most of the stores have received less iPhones than the AppleStore. After a one hour long wait, the store manager told everyone there were only 4Gigs left: I resigned. Fortunately, on my way home, I passed in front of the AppleStore and there was no queue. Intrigued, I entered and asked a sales representative if they already ran out of stock: “Nop… climb the stairs and get one!” that’s what I immediately did.   Back home, I opened the box and started to play with my iPhone. At this juncture, you can just place emergency calls or activate your phone through iTunes. The process is quite easy and straight-forward. For the second time in the evening I provided my credit card number and waited for the line activation from AT&T!   On Saturday morning, the iPhone was activated and working. First thing you do is sync your contacts, calendars, music (podcasts, mainly in my case), bookmarks… etc. Again, this is no different. iPhone is an iPod, and Apple made a smooth integration of its new functionalities with iTunes.   (Credit Photo: Matthew Johnson) That’s it: I started playing with the multi-touch screen and the motion sensor that rotates automatically the display when you turn the iPod 90°. I am pretty sure that the iPhone is the only phone on earth with 4 buttons: lock/unlock, mute/unmute, Sound Up/Down and the home button, just below the screen. This button is actually the “Home” button: anytime you push it, the interface goes to the home screen. The good thing is that it doesn’t shut down the application you are running. Thus, when you are writing an email, if you need to go online, a simple “touches” (should I say click?) on the “Safari” button and you end up browsing the web for information. You can then easily come back to your email without loosing the message you started to type! There are 4 devices in one iPhone, they are represented in a small dock at the bottom of the screen: Phone, well, you can choose to use the keypad, your contact list, recent calls and favorites. The “One more thing’ of this section is clearly the “Visual Voice Mail” tab which allows you to browse your voice mail visually and access directly to any message without listening to the prior ones! Mail application: Like any mail application! Web Browser: Safari has been ported to the iPhone with many good features: you can browse various pages at the same time and jump from one to another easily. You can also turn your iPhone to display a website in a “Landscape” view, and zoom by stretching your fingers or tapping on the multi-touch screen. Safari supports bookmarks, RSS feeds, but also various search engines (Google by default) and ads a very smart .com keystroke! iPod: everything like the traditional iPod : playlists, podcast, videos podcasts, and browsing through Music Library by artist, genre, songs… and with cover-flow in “Landscape” mode. Actually, the more I write, the more I figure it is difficult to describe what the iPhone is, simply because it is definitely not about functionalities, but about feelings: ease, simplicity, and smoothness… On the home screen you can also access 12 widgets: SMS: Send and receive short messages to your friends, but don’t forget: here in the US, you both pay! Calendar: view you tasks by list, day or month, add them and put reminders Photos: browse your various photo albums and the pictures you’ve taken with the iPhone. The very big iPhone Screen (3.5inches) and the excellent resolution are very convenient to watch your pictures! Camera: the iPhone Camera is not the best you could find on a mobile phone, nevertheless, the screen is bigger than any Camera screen, changing the way you’re taking picture: the trigger is on the screen! YouTube: Don’t expect to use it with the Edge connection, it’s too slow. Google had converted some of the most viewed clips of its famous video sharing platform to be watched on the iPhone. Stocks: this is an adaptation from Apple Dashboard’s famous widget to track the stock prices of your favorite companies. Maps: Google maps for the iPhone, very useful, since it also includes traffic information. Both map and satellite views are available and you can also zoom in and out! Weather: Again, this is one of the Apple widget’s converted for the iPhone. Clock: alarms, stopwatches, timers and clocks all around the world Calculator: what do you expect? Notes: a simple post-it application that definitely needs you to learn how to type quickly on the multi-touch screen. Settings: a set of option to change the main parameters of your phone, with some very interesting stuff such as “Airplane Mode” which cuts all wireless communications: Wifi, Bluetooth, Cellular and EDGE! Once you’re done with this, and perhaps because it costs $500 at least, you start wondering what you would expect Apple adding to your iPhone : Movies capturing AirTunes integration with Airport Express iTunes Music Store. As incredible as it seems, Apple doesn’t provide you a way to buy on the iTunes Music Store from your iPhone  In Europe, people are complaining about the lack of 3G and GPS. I am not sure this really is a debate but I am sure that Steve Jobs will clear these points out!   Finally, unlike the early versions, the battery seems to comply more or less with Apple’s specifications and should be robust enough for a regular use! And, unlike the iPods, the screen is more resistant to scratches! Julien Genestoux for Atelier   FEEDBACK For comments on this article, email us at editorial@atelier-us.com

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