Print 84 comment(s) - last by ymak.. on Nov 18 at 12:04 PM

  (Source: Reuters)
Ask and ye shall not receive, in the iPhone world

It’s hard to argue the brilliant potential of Apple's iPhone.  The device stands head and shoulders over most smartphones in terms of looks, form factor, graphics, internet capabilities, and touch interface.  So when the new 3G iPhone debuted, customers flocked to it, hoping that the oversights of the first generation model might have been addressed by Apple.

The wish list wasn't very long, and some items on it seem like they would be almost trivial to implement.  Among the desired features as chronicled by Wired -- photo texting, copy and paste, working Flash, browser crash fixes, Wi-Fi iTunes syncs, landscape view for emails, clicking anywhere to take a photo, and the ability to hide unwanted icons.

While one would thing one or two of these fixes -- requested by users and trumpeted all about by the media -- might be added, the iPhone 3G came with exactly none of them.  What it did come with were a plethora of features that were met with varying reactions from modest enthusiasm to total indifference, including Google Street View, direct podcast downloads, application ratings on deletion, line in support (for mics), Emoji icons, location sharing, and Safari tweaks (not crash proofing).  These fixes can easily be gleaned by glancing through leaks from the iPhone Firmware 2.2 Beta 2.

However, it’s the features that everyone wants that aren't there that are grabbing the most attention.  Of the top 20 most requested features, you have to reach 18 before you reach one Apple has implemented -- turn by turn directions.

Many analysts are puzzled that a company could be so out of touch with its user base.  A publicist for FullSix, the " relationship marketing” company that created Please Fix the iPhone drive points out that most big companies have launched initiatives which they use to gather and implement user suggestions.  They point to My Starbucks and Dell's Idea Storm as examples.

Apple does quite the opposite.  It gives people random features they never requested (with the exception of 3G, which was more of an upgrade to modern standards than a feature).  Many blame Apple's polarizing CEO Steve Jobs.  Mr. Jobs has publicly stated before that he doesn't think customers know what they want, but he does.

He likes to express this philosophy by using a Wayne Gretzky quote to refer to his thoughts on feature development; "I skate to where the puck is going to be.  Not to where it’s been."

However, most analysts believe that Mr. Jobs will eventually be forced to relent and offer a feature here and there that consumers have been demanding for months -- or at least one would hope. 

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RE: Just four things...
By Samus on 11/2/2008 10:47:51 PM , Rating: 5
A blackberry does all that. It also has a real keyboard, costs significantly less, and isn't vendor specific.

To me, 'that' is a no brainer :P

RE: Just four things...
By ebakke on 11/3/2008 9:22:49 AM , Rating: 2
It also contains the most cumbersome, unintuitive user interface in recent years.

RE: Just four things...
By gcouriel on 11/3/2008 11:47:39 AM , Rating: 4
not that i agree with your post, but let's run with it. i can learn how to manage my OS. i can't learn how to copy paste on my iPhone. that Apple doesn't want to listen to the demands of its customers is ridiculous. i can't run my business telling my clients "hey, here's what i'm going to do, whether you like it or not, and you don't have a choice," because i'll lose my clients.

Apple is running on a high-streak right now. if they keep mistreating the customer, they're going to realize that their customers may have bought one Mac, but they'll reconsider it for the second one. why buy one if you can't get the applications you need on a daily basis.

poorly run steve...

RE: Just four things...
By Gzus666 on 11/3/2008 12:22:00 PM , Rating: 4
Because Jobba the Steve knows what's best for you, just keep buying their crap.

RE: Just four things...
By ebakke on 11/3/2008 1:43:41 PM , Rating: 2
Oh, I'm not defending Apple in any way, shape, or form. I just hate Blackberry too.

RE: Just four things...
By robinthakur on 11/3/2008 5:29:42 PM , Rating: 2
I think this is a storm in a teacup truthfully. I have a 3G and what it does do, it does infinitely better than any other phone I've ever owned including the 2G. I've used Nokia's, Wimo's, sony ericssons and a blackberry and the iPhone is like night and day. The features I miss which don't exist are primarily being able to forward sms's and cut and paste would be useful, but I don't need it particularly often to be honest. I think you would have to search for a long time to find an iPhone user in the real world who isn't extremely pleased with it. The iPhone is in no way shape or form a failure because of these omissions, and may I say it is equally arrogant to look down on all the millions of people who have bought the iPhone and are happy, do you honestly think they're all thick slaves to marketing?
The bottom line is that the iphone is not perfect but is the best of an imperfect bunch. I would like to think that these core features will follow, slower than they should admittedly but still better than not.

Having said that I might get a Storm when it comes out to see what its like and I'm moderately interested in the G1 even though it looks like a child's toy. Seriously, why didn't they spend some money on design, and they would have the iPhone beaten. Maybe.

RE: Just four things...
By Darkskypoet on 11/4/2008 10:48:20 AM , Rating: 2
I'm an iphone user... I am pretty sure I am in the real world, and my treo was far better then this thing for email. Hands down. I could also play divx, xvid, mpg, etc files without having to re-encode, and to top it all off, sms was faster even with huge conversations stored... And I'm talking about a Treo 650 here. Not even something modern. (I could also cut and paste with ease, something very very handy... The excel support was very nice as well)

The only thing I like better about the iphone is the screen, and zoom with real rendering of pages in the web browser... Otherwise, I just wish Palm would have done some real updating to their treo line and not just let it languish since the 650.

(I do mean real updates, considering what they had back 3 + years ago with the 650, they should be much farther ahead then they are now :( )

RE: Just four things...
By PrezWeezy on 11/3/2008 9:00:32 PM , Rating: 2
Windows Mobile 6.1 is also great. More formfactors to choose from and absolutely stable after 3 months. Personaly I don't like the onscreen keyboard, and I'm not a huge fan of blackberry's, so my Mogul works great. And it's extremely fast on the internet compaired to either blackberry or the AT&T iPhone.

RE: Just four things...
By phaxmohdem on 11/3/2008 9:38:58 PM , Rating: 2
*jealous* I'm stuck with a non-upgradable Sprint Moto Q running WinMo 5 (Codename: "Ball Suckage")

I only keep it around for its physical QWERTY keyboard, fairly slim form factor, and Data tethering ability with my laptop.

If someone could make me a phone that had a half or 2/3 height touch screen/Nice UI like the iPhone, QWERTY below the screen, same slim form factor as my Q or the iPhone, and the ability to tether.... I'd love you forever ;)

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