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 sgtdisturbed47 on 11/3/2008 2:13:34 PM , Rating: 2
1.5 million G1 (Google) cell phones were pre-ordered in mid-October, and the numbers kept going up. The phone debuted and exploded. The G1 is here to take us away from the junk that iPhone is made of. G1 offers full open source, a big touch screen WITH a keyboard, and the potential to bring the iPhone to their already battered knees. The iPhone had its day, but I think more and more people are walking away from it, going for Blackberry Curves and Sidekicks, and now that the G1 has been out, people are also leaving the iPhone for the G1.

BB Curve offers more USEFUL features, real-time push email is included in the $20/month unlimited Blackberry data plan instead of having to pay $30 a month for iPhone data plus ano0ther 15 a month for MobileMe to get push email. The browser is a little better, but to tell you the truth, 3G isn't much faster in the real world than Edge. Coverage is spotty for 3G, and AT&T is a horrible cell phone company (ranked below T-Mobile). It was hot at first, but people have been realizing that it's just a friggin iPod. If you want a serious phone with strong features that matter, the iPhone isn't it. You can't even use a spare battery or remove the memory.

The iPhone is just junk. You want an iPod, get an iPod. If you want a real phone, go get a Blackberry or a G1.

RE: Just four things...
By mezman on 11/3/2008 3:01:58 PM , Rating: 2
I was all about the G1. I almost pulled the trigger on one but I can't stomach the T-Mobile network in Denver. Just too spotty and no 3G at all.

RE: Just four things...
By michael2k on 11/3/2008 4:21:06 PM , Rating: 3
You can get free push email with a Yahoo account on an iPhone.

And the G1 wasn't available for the past year...

Apple can easily "fix" these problems, so we shall see who gets updated faster. At current count the G1 has many significant shortcomings, including lack of A2DP.

It's hard to call the iPhone junk when many competitors are gunning for it...

"Let's face it, we're not changing the world. We're building a product that helps people buy more crap - and watch porn." -- Seagate CEO Bill Watkins
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