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5. Improved predictive text (or the ability to turn it off)
The iPhone's predictive text feature (where the phone "guesses" what you're going to write after you enter a few characters--to eliminate typos) does a decent job of streamlining typing. However, it has only an "opt-out" feature, which requires hitting a very small "x" to deselect the word it suggests. This is where that feature fails. The time it saves in correcting miscues sometimes pales in comparison to the frustration it causes in forcing you to repeatedly deselect words. And there's no way to turn it off or create a keyboard-based shortcut to deselect the predicted word.
6. Integrated IM application
Here's the first thing on the list that the new App Store's offerings fix--at least if you're an AOL Instant Messenger user. There's still no IM client preloaded onto the iPhone. That said, with e-mail, text messaging, voice calling, and a host of third-party mobile Web-based messaging offerings (Twitter comes to mind), do we really need another form of communication built into the 3G iPhone? Well, maybe a fax machine.
7. Flash support
Sadly, no one really knows when being able to view Flash animations or films will be a reality on the iPhone. This big wish-list item for the second-gen version is still missing from the 3G handset. Even though YouTube clips are in Flash format on the Web, they've been converted to QuickTime format specifically for the iPhone-centric version of YouTube. The lack of Flash support means Safari fumbles when it comes to YouTube clips embedded in blog posts or other pages; those just show up as broken plugin icons, with no option to launch the clips in the iPhone's separate YouTube app.
Update: The new 2.0 software has fixed the embedded YouTube clips problem. Embedded YouTube clips now show up with a Play button; clicking that button launches the clip in the iPhone's YouTube app. (7/13/08)
8. A better camera and a camcorder
Sorry, snapshooters and YouTube filmmakers. The 3G iPhone's still camera maxes out at 2 megapixels, and there's no way to shoot video with the camera. Those are limitations that no number of photography apps from the iPhone App Store will cure.
9. Unified e-mail inbox
Microsoft Exchange is now supported, but there's no way to get all your messages from Yahoo, Mac.com, Gmail, AOL, and your business account all on one page, so to speak. Then again, barring excellent spam filters across all those sites, you wouldn't want that anyway.
10. Voice dialing and voice memos
Third-party apps to the rescue! The new iPhone has no native support for voice dialing or recording audio memos, but a few third-party apps now available via the App Store build them into the 3G handset, including Jott for iPhone, which is available for free.
See our complete iPhone coverage.
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