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Nicodemus

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iPhone [Jan. 9th, 2007|10:39 am]
Nicodemus
I try to stay out of range of Jobs' reality distortion field, but I have to say that this looks really promising. The second half of this morning's keynote is about their iPhone. They've managed to integrate a lot of features with some interesting hardware (the orientation sensor is a nice touch) and put a slick interface on the whole thing.

I dislike cell phones but even I want to buy one of these things...

Edit: Just announced the price point of $500/$600. We'll have to see how the market likes that; it's a bit on the high side but this is a complex product.
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Comments:
[User Picture]From: twopiearr
2007-01-09 07:00 pm (UTC)
500-600?

sheesh - the mini costs that much!
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[User Picture]From: nicodemusrat
2007-01-09 07:40 pm (UTC)
But you get so much more mini than the Mini!

Yeah, the price is definitely an interesting choice. It may overly limit their market, at least initially. Plus, it sounds like it's bundled with a Cingular plan, specifically.

We'll have to see how the market reacts to that.
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[User Picture]From: tugrik
2007-01-09 07:11 pm (UTC)
It's a very intriguing device.

The pricepoint is about standard for a newly released smartphone. With the exception of the Q (which started at about $350 but is about $99 these days), most smartphones were in the $450-700 range new. It's also interesting that no mention was made of the usual cellular-company "but it's $X with a 2-year contract!" discounts. If the $500/$600 is a straight-up cost without any contractual discount mumbo-jumbo, it's directly in line with current 'smartphone' pricings.

My only true complaint is that it's an EDGE device and not a 2.5/3G such as UMTS, HSDPA or EVDO. It will be amazingly functional, especially with multitouch, but speed will suffer for those us of used to EVDO devices.

The nicest part, IMHO, is this opens up some tech platforms that will make it into other devices in the coming releases. Remove the phone aspect, you get the mega-iPod everybody wanted. Scale up to 12" or bigger and you have the multitouch-capable tablet laptop everybody wanted.

It will be fun to see how this one plays out.
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[User Picture]From: nicodemusrat
2007-01-09 07:23 pm (UTC)
I tend to agree with your take on it, that what this heralds in terms of future products is almost more exciting than this particular product. They may have finally got a successful integration of these different features.

The keynote did note that this was with a 2-year contract, but didn't indicate if that was factored into the quoted prices. I think that it is (and I'm sure we'll find out soon enough), which makes the $500/$600 seem a bit high to me. It's not unreasonable, given that this is an impressive and cutting-edge device, but it's enough to give pause.

We'll have to see how people react to that. It certainly looks like a wonderful little gadget. If customer feedback holds that to be true, the price may not be a serious issue.
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[User Picture]From: frysco
2007-01-09 07:27 pm (UTC)
From the macrumorslive.com page:
10:54 am note - iPhone prices include a 2 year contract - FYI
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[User Picture]From: patch_bunny
2007-01-09 07:25 pm (UTC)
"...the orientation sensor is a nice touch..."

iPhone. Now with a compass in the stock and a thing that tells time.
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[User Picture]From: nicodemusrat
2007-01-09 07:28 pm (UTC)
No, it's got a horizontal/vertical sensor. Not, by itself, that unusual but it looks like they've done a good job of smoothly integrating it into the unit's software (e.g. when viewing photos, you can flip between portrait and landscape and it uses the screen area appropriately).
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[User Picture]From: frysco
2007-01-09 07:25 pm (UTC)
I'm tempted to, but the thing that concerns me right now is that it seems to be tied to Cingular - presumably that means that when you get one of these devices, it'll be locked to that network.

That won't work for me being up in Canada. I'd want to get one that could be unlocked so that I could use it both in Canada, and then down in the US.
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[User Picture]From: nicodemusrat
2007-01-09 07:33 pm (UTC)
I think they described it as an "exclusive partnership", so that sounds like it's tightly tied to Cingular. And Cingular probably will determine exactly what sorts of plans are applicable, which will affect the built-in cost of the unit.
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[User Picture]From: jovino
2007-01-09 07:26 pm (UTC)
The pricepoint is WAY too high. At least for me. I still need to watch the keynote replay.
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From: ex_kitsuneze588
2007-01-09 07:55 pm (UTC)
The price is a bit steep, but I'd be much more willing to pay $600 for an iPhone than say, a blur-ray player, er I mean PS3 ;)
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[User Picture]From: octavius_rodens
2007-01-09 07:57 pm (UTC)
If it's $500/600 and locked into Cingular, that could be a problem. The Treo 680 is $400 unlocked and free if you sign up with Cingular (or at least it was).

The phone does look neat, but I'm not too thrilled with the idea of a touch screen instead of a keyboard. I tend to write a *lot* using my Treo and not being able to feel the keys would be way too weird.

It is interesting that it runs OS X, though. I haven't used widgets myself, but they seem to be pretty popular.
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[User Picture]From: altivo
2007-01-09 07:59 pm (UTC)
And like an iPod, you're in a lottery. It may die the first week, or it may wait until the day after the warranty runs out and then die.
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[User Picture]From: nicodemusrat
2007-01-10 08:57 pm (UTC)
FWIW, neither my wife nor I have had any problems with our iPods. They're 2.5 and 3.5 years old.
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[User Picture]From: altivo
2007-01-10 09:20 pm (UTC)
Maybe you're less careless in handling them than most of my friends. :)

I don't have an IPod, but my experience with reliability of other Apple hardware has been dubious.
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From: chrissawyer
2007-01-09 08:10 pm (UTC)
It's been established that there is a market for high priced portable electronics with oodles of snob appeal.

I'm sure these phones will sell.
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[User Picture]From: smack_jackal
2007-01-09 08:13 pm (UTC)
Personally, Microsoft's smartphone offerings have left me cold. They're functional but that's about it. They leave me cold in the way that they mostly work but not the way that you think that should or the brain-dead things that the do. This...This makes me very, very excited. I'm very curious to see how easy it will be to run my own code on this beast.

It also makes me very happy that I switched from Verizon to Cingular. Very happy indeed.
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[User Picture]From: porsupah
2007-01-09 08:15 pm (UTC)
I'd love one, and not because of being able to make voice calls, but because of its data capabilities. No messing around with half-baked browsers, but one that'll happily support Google Maps. Multiple pages at the same time looks like being easy as well, not to mention easy zooming in and out on different parts of the page.

No mention of whether OS X's Ink is included - one would have thought that'd be right at home in such a device, though maybe that'd bring back the requirement for a stylus.

I'll be very interested to see how compatible this version of OS X is - will it be possible to just drop, say, VLC or Azureus onto it and run them? I'd hope either no or only minor tweaking would be necessary; the Sidekicks are cool devices, but being unable to load one's own apps onto it freely would irk me somewhat.

One report of the iPhone claimed the display is 160dpi, which would make the display about the same as the PSP's, at 480x272 - no complaints there.

But gods, that UI is slick. Finally, someone's actually using multipoint touchscreens in a mass market device, and using them well.
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[User Picture]From: smack_jackal
2007-01-09 09:56 pm (UTC)
Won't be offered by Sprint. It's a GSM phone so it won't work on their networks and they've got an exclusive with Cingular.
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[User Picture]From: brokkentwolf
2007-01-09 08:48 pm (UTC)
Looks pretty awesome! :) I'd shell out for it - even if it DOES mean switching back to Cingular. :/
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[User Picture]From: nevermint
2007-01-09 09:24 pm (UTC)
I want one!!!
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[User Picture]From: marko_the_rat
2007-01-09 09:35 pm (UTC)
iPhone, therefore I am. If they release it in Australia later, I might give it a look. If there's one thing Apple does well, it's interface. And design. If there's two things Apple does well...
(echoes of Monty Python's Spanish Inquisition sketch, if you Americans don't get the reference)
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[User Picture]From: renniefox
2007-01-09 10:21 pm (UTC)
always. wait. for. 2nd. gen. >.<

'few' things that bug me:
- only 8gb? (that means this isn't the much-anticipated video iPod but a teaser... stay tuned)
- wireless synch with iTunes?
- ad hoc sharing?
- media streaming?
- games? o.O
- chat/im?
- can it dock/will it fit with current dock speakers?
- buttonless iPod control would be quite awful since I usually don't need to see screen to use iPod... like skipping songs
- camera: could have been great if it can be used for video conference
- camera: can it take videos?
- dealing with airline regulation: can wireless/phone function be disable (easily)?

early adopters: pay too much, junk later, throw away
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[User Picture]From: nicodemusrat
2007-01-10 08:59 pm (UTC)
I agree with you on the first-gen issues. I think that this is a gateway to future developments that could prove quite interesting, though.

I also agree that this isn't the expected iPod upgrade. People who just want a music player aren't going to plump for a pricey device with a two-year cell contract. I think we'll see the stripped-down version of this as the next iPod.
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[User Picture]From: kit_ping
2007-01-10 12:04 am (UTC)
You know, the antenna on my cell phone *did* just break... :)
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[User Picture]From: wolfstoy
2007-01-10 07:47 pm (UTC)
I'll admit that it sounds really interesting. However, it sure does seem like they are promising an aweful lot with this thing. 6 hours of video playback but still as thin as a Motorola Q, which doesn't even have a touch screen. 16 hours of music play back. Yet the screen is the full size of the device? Running BSD Unix (OSX) yet only 4 or 8 GB of memory? It sounds like someone's pipe dream and so I say I'll believe it when I see it, and I wouldn't trust the first few to come off the production line given Apple's desire for secracy over quality control for first generation items.
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