The iPhone: Ten Things Apple Did Right, and Ten Things That Need Work

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Ten Things Apple Did Right in the iPhone

Attractive menus
  1. The display, the display, the display: Everything looks good on it.
  2. The menu design is simple and clean, and the home-screen icons look like so much eye candy.
  3. Fingertip navigation, zooming, and scrolling are intuitive, effective, and fast.
  4. Video playback is so good that you can tell when you've done a subpar job of ripping your movies.
  5. Visual voice mail lets you get to the calls you care about faster.
  6. The integrated applications--including Google Maps, YouTube, and a world clock that packs a timer, a stopwatch, and multiple alarms--are great.
  7. CoverFlow
  8. CoverFlow, which lets you choose your music by visually flipping through album art, is incredibly fun.
  9. The exterior is tough: Our initial stress tests suggest that the iPhone is more durable than you might expect for such a sleek handset.
  10. It's the first Apple music player with a built-in speaker--and the speaker isn't half bad for a phone component.
  11. You don't get a disconcerting "do not disconnect" message when syncing the iPhone with a PC.

Ten Things Apple (and AT&T) Did Wrong

Headphone adapter
  1. We want our AOL Instant Messaging--and Yahoo and MSN IM clients, too. What about MMS support for sending picture mail?
  2. There's no voice recording and, more importantly, no voice dialing support. How are you supposed to use an iPhone with a hands-free car kit?
  3. It's the most locked-down phone we've ever seen. You can't swap out the AT&T SIM card for one from another network; in fact, you can't even swap it out for another AT&T SIM card.
  4. AT&T is building out its mobile broadband network, but iPhone users are stuck with the company's older EDGE technology--or with battery-consuming Wi-Fi.
  5. You know those great headphones you already own? They won't fit the iPhones headset jack, so your first iPhone accessory will have to be a bulky, ugly $10 adapter.
  6. Tough typing
  7. The software keyboard invites typos--and when you're entering passwords, there's no way of telling whether you've got them right until tyou get an "access denied" prompt.
  8. It's great that the iPhone can reorient pages in Safari, CoverFlow, and the photo album, but why not extend that capability to other apps such as e-mail? Some messages would benefit from a wide-screen display. And even when the device does reorient, it doesn't always follow through with all the attendant features: CoverFlow loses access to the volume slider, for example.
  9. There's no support for custom ringtones--surprising in a music phone.
  10. The camera is rudimentary, with no audio/video or even a zoom capability.
  11. You don't get to-do list support, a basic in most calendar applications.
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