Catch up on stories from the past week (and beyond) at the Slashdot story archive

 



Forgot your password?
typodupeerror

Full Review of the iPhone 2 On Launch Day 420

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the dock-not-included dept.
With the launch of Apple's brand-spanking-new 3G iPhone today, Engadget has a great review of the product and many of the prominent features. The review has quite a few good pictures and is not shy about technical details, but I guess they would know a fair bit about it, having ripped one apart yesterday. "The wireless industry is a notoriously tough nut to crack, and it's become pretty clear that the first iPhone wasn't about total domination so much as priming the market and making a good first impression with some very dissatisfied cellphone users. With the iPhone 3G, though, Apple's playing for keeps. Not only is this iPhone's Exchange enterprise support aiming straight for the heart of the business market, but the long-awaited 3rd party application support and App Store means it's no longer just a device, but a viable computing platform. And its 3G network compatibility finally makes the iPhone welcome the world over, especially after Cupertino decided to ditch its non-traditional carrier partnerships in favor of dropping the handset price dramatically. $200? We're still a little stunned." Update 17:17 GMT by SM: The guys over at Engadget also pointed out that Apple is having some severe problems with their iTunes servers and many customer are being sent home without their sync complete for new iPhones.
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Full Review of the iPhone 2 On Launch Day

Comments Filter:
  • More Expensive (Score:5, Informative)

    by lessthanjakejohn (766177) on Friday July 11, 2008 @12:28PM (#24154813)
    It actually becomes $160 more expensive over the life of the contract.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by LandDolphin (1202876)
      You don't have to get a data plan do you? It is possible to get the phone for $200 and then use one of the bacis phone service plans, correct?

      Sure, that would be a waste fo an iPhone, but I could see a lot of people doing that so they can appear to be "hip" or "cool" with their iPhone while. But then again, I live near Scottsdale where a lot of people try to appear to have money when they don't.
      • Re:More Expensive (Score:4, Informative)

        by EastCoastSurfer (310758) on Friday July 11, 2008 @12:55PM (#24155211)

        I'm fairly certain at least with AT&T you're required to get a data plan and minimum voice plan with the iPhone purchase. Basically this is their solution for the unlockers. Force you into a plan at the store and charge you $200 + activation + 1 month of service if you break the plan.

      • Re:More Expensive (Score:5, Informative)

        by EvanED (569694) <evaned@ g m ail.com> on Friday July 11, 2008 @12:55PM (#24155225)

        You don't have to get a data plan do you? It is possible to get the phone for $200 and then use one of the bacis phone service plans, correct?

        No, you can't.

        Not even if you are buying a used iPhone from someone; you have to get the iPhone package. In fact I *just* closed the window I had with an AT&T support chat asking this question.

        • Ahh,

          Then that really does make the complaint about the rise in the data plan even more valid.
        • Re:More Expensive (Score:5, Informative)

          by Garabito (720521) on Friday July 11, 2008 @02:34PM (#24156781)

          Not even if you are buying a used iPhone from someone; you have to get the iPhone package.

          If you're buying an used iPhone from someone and you have already a contract with AT&T (or sign up with a dumb phone) nothing prevents you to put the AT&T SIM on the iPhone, no matter what the AT&T support drone tells you.

      • by warrior (15708) on Friday July 11, 2008 @01:46PM (#24155969) Homepage

        I live in the United States where a lot of people try to appear to have money when they don't.
         
        There, fixed that for you.

    • by geekoid (135745)

      yes, but you are getting more features and abilities.

      If I upgraded my car to a new one, it would cost more.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Tyketto (97265)

      It actually becomes $160 more expensive over the life of the contract.

      This is variable.

      I say that because through various resources (job, college, etc.) you could qualify for corporate, IRU, or FAN discounts (at least in the US). For example, the FAN discount I have from working at the Univ. of Nevada gives me a 15% discount on the phone plan (the cost of the data plan is included in the service now), 20% discount on any accessories bought at ATT, and any upgrade fees waived)[1].

      Discounts vary from company to company and entity to entity, so the best bet would be to see if yo

  • by Andruil (971627) on Friday July 11, 2008 @12:28PM (#24154815)
    A friend of mine works for a company selling the iPhone 2. According to him if you lose your iPhone 2 you will 1. Have to pay full price to get a new one (not too surprising imo) and 2. Re-sign up for a 2 year contract... Also according to him the employees have been instructed specifically to not mention this fact to customers. Pretty screwy to me. Then again I am ignorant of how most cell phones work so I don't know if this is standard or not. I'm assuming based on his reaction its not.
    • I haven't read the fine print on my service recently but I'm wondering if this is standard. I think when you get a new phone for any reason, you'll have to activate it for a fee, but you stay with your original contract. Most companies I think will waive the fee if you simply sign up for a new contract.
      • by drinkypoo (153816)
        I had a RAZR V3i replaced on warranty. It cost me about $50, but I did not have to sign up for a new plan. This was with Edge wireless, which has since been gobbled up by Ma Bell (with the ill communication)
    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward

      A friend of mine works for a company selling the iPhone 2.

      Damn you Nokia! Or is it Motorola?

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by vux984 (928602)

      A friend of mine works for a company selling the iPhone 2. According to him if you lose your iPhone 2 you will 1. Have to pay full price to get a new one (not too surprising imo) and

      This is true of all cell phones. Not only if you 'lose it', but if you damage it in ways that are not covered by warranty, or if you damage it out of warranty. (most cell phones have a 1 year warranty although you can often buy extended warranty.) however liquid damage and physical damage are never covered.

      2. Re-sign up for a 2

    • Nonsense. Your friend was lied to - all you have to do is buy a new phone and stick it on the old contract. It's basically a ploy to sell the phone shop's insurance.
    • by AstrumPreliator (708436) on Friday July 11, 2008 @01:18PM (#24155551)
      I was going to buy an iPhone 2 but my friend's mother's brother's cousin said that his kid knows someone who works for Apple and he said the iPhone 3 should be out by Christmas. So everyone buying the iPhone 2 is getting suckered.
    • by MattW (97290) <matt@ender.com> on Friday July 11, 2008 @01:49PM (#24156013) Homepage

      Your friend is wrong. Even people not eligible for ugprade can get the iphone at the middle price ($400/500).

      The subsidized price is available when you are eligible for an upgrade; just like any subsidized phone - if you lose it, you pay an unsubsidized price. AT&T has a freaky offer of a non-contract iphone at $600/700, but it makes no sense to buy it, since the ETF is the same or less than the cost differential.

  • finally! (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward
    This thing is catching up to the features already available on my BB.
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by k_187 (61692)
      SRSLY, you can have my Crackberry when you pry it from my cold dead hands (so hey, free phone when I kick the bucket).
  • by Reality Master 201 (578873) on Friday July 11, 2008 @12:30PM (#24154847) Journal

    It's more expensive over the life of the contract than the previous model!
    It's not just a plain cell phone!
    It doesn't run Linux!

  • by ericspinder (146776) on Friday July 11, 2008 @12:31PM (#24154867) Journal
    As an 1st generation iPhone owner, I'm excited about the new Software, which will enable all the new features save for GPS. Staying with edge support only will even save me $15 month (3G is $10 more and doesn't include the 200 messages I can already send). I'll likely upgrade with the next generation.
  • by Spencerian (465343) on Friday July 11, 2008 @12:34PM (#24154915) Homepage Journal

    On the meltdown of Apple's servers given international demand:

    Quoth ABC News and others:

    It's the iPocalypse!!!

    The Apple revolution may be televised, but streaming is down at this time...

  • Activation, not sync (Score:3, Informative)

    by necro81 (917438) on Friday July 11, 2008 @12:34PM (#24154923) Journal
    Correction: the problems people are experiencing have to do with the activation servers, it doesn't have much to do with syncing. Although, one cannot sync their phone (or do anything with it, really) until they first activate it through itunes.
  • Just Got Mine... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by hondo77 (324058) on Friday July 11, 2008 @12:36PM (#24154941) Homepage
    ...at an AT&T Store. They told me I need to go home and connect to iTunes to finish the activation. It's not ideal but it's no biggie. I'm thinking Apple will have smoothed out any problems out by the time I get home this afternoon. Well, at least I can charge it here at work.
  • I'm on the Pacific timezone, so everyone out here got the short end of the stick. AT&T is selling the phones and setting up the contracts, but they can do little else besides make a token effort to activate the phone and then send people home to activate it later. I just sold my soul and gave $200 to AT&T, I'd really like to play with my iPhone.
    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by maxume (22995)

      So play find the iPhone. You should be able to get in a good couple of rounds before it gets activated.

      To make it interesting, start the game with copious amounts of vodka.

    • I just sold my soul and gave $200 to AT&T, I'd really like to play with my iPhone.

      And you're not even allowed to play with it by yourself without activation?

      Try and tell me that the future wouldn't be darker with Apple at the helm than Microsoft... Just try.

      • by pushing-robot (1037830) on Friday July 11, 2008 @02:30PM (#24156737)

        I just sold my soul and gave $200 to AT&T, I'd really like to play with my iPhone.

        And you're not even allowed to play with it by yourself without activation?

        Try and tell me that the future wouldn't be darker with Apple at the helm than Microsoft... Just try.

        Let's see:

        Apple's iPods - no activation
        Apple's computers - no activation
        Apple's other hardware - no activation
        Apple's operating system - no activation
        Apple and AT&T's iPhone - mandatory activation
        AT&T's other mobile phones - mandatory activation

        Blaming Apple for cell phone activation is almost as silly as blaming your sports car manufacturer for speed limit signs.

        • by DdJ (10790) on Friday July 11, 2008 @03:41PM (#24157725) Homepage Journal

          Actually... the iPod Touch also won't work without activating it by connecting it to iTunes. It's got a notepad application, a YouTube viewer, a mail client, a web browser, none of these things are set up by iTunes, but none of them works until the iPod Touch is activated by connecting it to iTunes.

          • by pushing-robot (1037830) on Friday July 11, 2008 @04:36PM (#24158509)

            True, but the "activation" just pairs the device with the computer; it doesn't verify anything with Apple's servers. You can set up an iPod Touch with no Internet access whatsoever.

            The techno-survivalist geek in me wants gadgets that are fully functional right out of the box, but the experienced IT geek in me has learned that without a degree of control, inexperienced users get themselves into deep trouble.

            In other words, I'd rather spend a minute pairing the handheld device with the PC at the very start than spend hours trying to get the two to sync properly after the fact... It's always fun making two semi-overlapping contact lists/mail folders/calendars on two separate devices perfectly merge with no loss or duplication of data. While the CFO breathes down your neck.

        • by jotaeleemeese (303437) on Friday July 11, 2008 @03:44PM (#24157761) Homepage Journal

          ... to activate other phones.

          So try again genius.

        • Blaming Apple for cell phone activation is almost as silly as blaming your sports car manufacturer for speed limit signs.

          (-1, StupidCarAnalogyByStupidPerson)

          Guess what? My RAZR V3i lets me play Java games if it has any SIM in it (including a test SIM, which is about $6.) It doesn't have to be activated. The device wasn't locked when I got it (not even a subsidy lock, since I got it from edge wireless, now part of AT&T, god damn it.)

          It's more like having your sports car delivered to your house, then having to contact the manufacturer with your name, address, phone number, current location and VIN before you are able to turn the key and drive even on your own property - and right now, their call center is very, very busy.

          See, in this analogy, WiFi is your own property; at least, it's not the phone company's. And the cellphone network is the phone company's network. Apple is the auto manfacturer; it's not only none of their fucking business where or who you are, but just as it is perfectly legal to purchase a car and not register it and then use it for off-road use only (and I don't mean dirt roads in BLM land, which are considered roads for all purposes of law, but instead dune riding or on-track racing) it is also totally legal and reasonable for you to use such a device on your own network.

          See what I did there? For those at home who missed it, I just took your analogy which bore no resemblance whatsoever to the situation at hand, and made it almost make sense.

          If you had to get permission from GM via onstar before being allowed to pull your car out of your garage and into your driveway, would you be amused? Especially if it didn't work?

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by ptbarnett (159784)

          Blaming Apple for cell phone activation is almost as silly as blaming your sports car manufacturer for speed limit signs.

          AT&T's other cell phones require "activation", but AT&T does it with their own system.

          The iPhone must be activated using Apple's servers. Today, that appears to be where the problem lies. That puts the responsibility squarely on Apple's shoulders.

          AT&T is having no problems doing activations for non-iPhone customers today, other than they have to wait in line along with all the people waiting for an iPhone.

  • That's if you ever get past the line to even get a phone in the first place.

    iPhone 3G lines make DMV look like baskin robins.

    • by kellyb9 (954229)
      I swear - I just don't get the hype. I understand that it's a cool new gadget and all, but I never understood these early adopters who need to have it the first day it's released. I remember back at Christmas time, they had a line just to get into the Apple store! Last I checked, Apple does have an online store... er... unless the problem is that you don't have a computer to access it with, but then I'd recommend buying a cheap Linux machine :-).
  • by spoot (104183) on Friday July 11, 2008 @12:41PM (#24155027) Homepage

    I am completely sick of hearing about this thing. everyfarkingwhere you turn it's 'iphone-iphone-iphone' arghhhh. of course I might be singing a different tune if 1) I had a job and the economy was doing ok so I could afford one 2) knew someone i could actually make a phone call to. but oh how I do want to hold it's shinyness in my filty little hands and multi-touch it's glassy goodness. Unfortunately I have to buy groceries this month and pine for the days when I had a decent credit score.

  • As a pro geek, my arsenal of electronic gadgets used to climb in number. In the past year or so, I've gotten down to 4 items I need and use daily:

    1. iMate Ultimate 6150 (primary phone, T-Mobile, EDGE)
    2. HTC Trinity P3600 (secondary phone, AT&T, 3G)
    3. iPod Touch 16GB
    4. TomTom GO 910 GPS

    My Trinity has a great GPS built in, so the TomTom could go. The iPhone 2 would almost get rid of 3 devices, actually, except for one feature that is missing/disabled: tethering.

    I travel, a lot, for my businesses. Nationally and internationally, I use my cell phone for email, phone calls, and basic billing. A notebook is not in my list of gadgets, even though I usually have 2 on me some of the time. Being able to tether to my Trinity is a huge need. On the Trinity I run a WiFiRouter app that lets me tether any WiFi device to the web at full 3G speeds. If I am with clients, employees or subcontractors, having a great WiFi wireless router is a huge gain. But Apple refuses to allow it.

    I'm sure some third party hackers will eventually get tethering to work. If so, Apple will gain a customer or 15 (I'd give this option to any of my staff who uses wireless tethering regularly or even irregularly). So why did Apple not offer this feature? Battery life? AT&T telling them not to?

    I'm using tethering right now, in fact. On the go. I have two notebooks booted up and online, and they're working great. But I'd love to downsize all my devices to one.

    So I'm calling you out Apple. Add a tethering feature to the next ROM update!

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      As a pro geek, my arsenal of electronic gadgets used to climb in number. In the past year or so, I've gotten down to 4 items I need and use daily: 1. iMate Ultimate 6150 (primary phone, T-Mobile, EDGE) 2. HTC Trinity P3600 (secondary phone, AT&T, 3G) 3. iPod Touch 16GB 4. TomTom GO 910 GPS ...

      Nokia, as many other brands, can reduce all of that to one phone (can even install TomTom)... and have 5MP camera with flash, and 30FPS video camera, and an officially unlocked phone. Apple is not the best thing, since sliced bread - you have other options.

    • Is tethering not something that could be implemented with the SDK? I honestly don't know, not having a Mac (which as far as I'm aware is needed to make proper use of the SDK), I haven't investigated.

      That said, tethering HAS been implemented by third parties, for quite some time now. Unfortunately, it's so far required a jailbroken iPhone and some fairly low level hackery that I don't think the average user would feel comfortable doing.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      I do a lot of international traveling as well. Although I don't use data nearly as much as some do, it is unbelievably nice to be able to pop in a SIM card for whatever country I'm in and make phone calls. Recently I bought a global SIM which gives me one telephone number allowing me to be reached anywhere. If Apple would allow their customers to have this kind of functionality they would have at least one more customer.
  • by ProfBooty (172603) on Friday July 11, 2008 @12:48PM (#24155109)

    I wouldnt mind picking one up if I can maintain my discounts as an AT&T premier customer.

    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by maxume (22995)

      I'll only get one if I can maintain my discounts as an AT&T Super mega ultra platinum AT&T contract only customer (you have to know someone, if you ask about it, they'll tell you it doesn't exist).

  • by S-100 (1295224) on Friday July 11, 2008 @12:52PM (#24155173)
    Well I'm back from the local AT&T store empty-handed. Apparently they only had 30 phones to sell, and with the broken activation servers it took them hours to distribute them. I stopped by at 11:45 because the line was short, but the news came shortly thereafter that the phones were gone. The news came from frustrated customers leaving the store, not the AT&T staff.

    Apple had over a year to correct the supply/activation fiasco of the initial iPhone launch, and so far it's going worse, not better. The new iPhone is also more expensive to own - Job's "half the cost" pitch is an outright lie. 3G (where available) simply provides the "user experience" that people expected from the original iPhone. I already had a bad experience with Edge, so I didn't waste my time with it.

    They intentionally planned both an iTunes software upgrade and the release of 2.0 software for the original iPhone and iPod Touch for today, and they didn't plan for overloaded servers? I was fortunate enough to have gotten the iTunes update before the rush, but all day long, the "Buy Now" button on apple.com for the 2.0 upgrade (for my iTouch) is "temporarily unavailable".

    By the way, It's $10 to "upgrade" the iTouch to accept the 2.0 software upgrade. This upgrade is needed to run 2.0, which is required if you want to install any additional apps from the Apple Apps store. An original iPhone and my iTouch both cost the same ($399), but if I had an iPhone, the software update to 2.0 would be free. Also, I made the mistake of buying the earlier $20 iTouch software upgrade. Turns out the 2.0 upgrade includes that upgrade as well, and already having it doesn't make the 2.0 upgrade any cheaper (or free, as it should be)

    How much longer before the masses will finally see through the bad customer experiences with Apple (they go on and on - unreplaceable iPod batteries, rip-off price of the original iPhone (reduced shortly after release to really tick off the loyal early adopters), and now another botched product release. When will the loyal fans finally say "ENOUGH!"
    • by drinkypoo (153816) <martin.espinoza@gmail.com> on Friday July 11, 2008 @01:14PM (#24155507) Homepage Journal
      If they were smarter they would have pushed the 2.0 update out to existing iPhone owners already, and been learning things and doing updates so that the 2.0 users would have a closer-to-trouble-free launch. But, you know, they aren't.
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by nine-times (778537)

        Of course, the problem with that is that it might steal some of the hype from iPhone 3G. After all, an original iPhone with 2.0 firmware has all the features of a new one, minus 3G and GPS. If you have all the original iPhones updated a week before, then the release of the new version is just going to seem like a minor hardware update.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by drinkypoo (153816)
          Well, it is a minor hardware update. They could have kept some features back, though.
          • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

            by nine-times (778537)

            Yes, that was my point. It is a minor hardware update, but by releasing a huge software update at the same time, they tie the two together and it *seems* like the hardware update is a really big deal. If they didn't do that, the minor hardware update just seems like a minor hardware update.

            But let's all be happy that they didn't hold any features back. That's to their credit. They could have released the new software to only run on the 3G, just to spur people to upgrade. Most other phones work that wa

  • 3g networks (Score:5, Funny)

    by Archimonde (668883) on Friday July 11, 2008 @12:54PM (#24155205) Homepage

    First post!!1
    I' so pumped up about these super pony fast 3g networks and the wireless coverage is spotle

    Sent from my iPhone.

  • by postbigbang (761081) on Friday July 11, 2008 @01:25PM (#24155647)

    1. Expose the full minimum costs (including taxes) for the deal over its life
    2. Provide overnight replacement of defective phones, and have remote diagnostics to prove it
    3. Bogus charges of moisture sensors should be grounds for no-fault contract termination
    4. No charge for instant termination if your bill is paid on time
    5. Full backup of user data services at no charge at the carrier on-line
    6. No extra charges for text, data, or voice (they're all the same anyway)
    7. User-selected least-call-cost routing
    8. Users can put any app on their phone they want, so long as they take responsibility for it
    9. No throttling of service by type; all user controlled.
    10. User password-controlled kill switches to brick stolen phones
    11. One single mini-USB jack for charging purposes and sub-mini audio plug standard on all phones
    12. No charges for directly uploading and downloading any media or datafiles to the phone within its capacity
    13. Destroy all 'deals' between phone vendors and carriers; reveal the true cost of using all services on each contract
    14. Allow treble damages for carrier slamming
    15. Mandate unbundled deals, so that true costs can be assessed by consumers

    Cell phones need to leave the telco world and enter the computer world.
    Ok. Whew. I'll get off my soapbox. Now for the barrage.

  • I mean seriously, you buy a phone and then you need to go home and activate it through some software?

    What if I don't run Windows nor Mac?

    I mean, Apple, cmmon ..
    That means that obligates me to have a computer running the OS you choose. Or installing another OS just for activating it.

    What's next?
    Will I be obliged to have 4 gigs RAM to move my pics to the PC's hard disk?

    P.S. I know I could just go to a friend and activate the phone, but will you just go to his house to use his computer and you have your own at home?

  • by SethJohnson (112166) on Friday July 11, 2008 @02:45PM (#24156951) Homepage Journal


    I downloaded an earlier version of the iPhone 2.0 software [appleinsider.com] and installed it on my iPhone yesterday. Works great and I've spent a lot of time in the app store. Here are my observations:

    1. AolRadio is an amazing offering. Within wifi zones, it offers a ton of digital radio stations that blow my Sirius satellite subscription out of the water- better music offerings and for free. It supposedly works to some extent over 3g, while not offering ALL stations. So it makes the iPhone a cool portable internet radio player.

    2. eReader is an ebook reader that's free, but it only allows you to install books purchased from their website. For $9.99 you can purchase an app called 'bookshelf' that lets you install your own ebooks, and supports multiple formats. It doesn't currently support PDF, but I assume it will.

    3. Most of the good games are not free or cheap. Super Monkey Ball is $9.99.

    4. Weatherbug is an app similar to the original weather APP, but it offers radar views and current condition photos. The radar would be excellent, but it doesn't automatically zoom in to the city you are interested in. At least one other feature on it seems incomplete.

    Seth

A computer lets you make more mistakes faster than any other invention, with the possible exceptions of handguns and Tequilla. -- Mitch Ratcliffe

Working...