iPhone 3G – Our Shameless Surrender

If we had any brains, we wouldn’t be pissing away money on over-priced, over-hyped gadgets like the iPhone 3G.

But we are human after all (though many readers of the SearchIndia.com blog may disagree here) and so we succumbed to the twin banes of American capitalism – temptation and hype.

Yes, we trudged over to the AT&T store this morning and got ourselves a 16GB Black iPhone 3G.

The 16GB iPhone 3G costs $299+$36 Activation Fee (for new customers).

Here’s our preliminary take on the iPhone 3G.

What we like about the new iPhone 3G:
1. Design – Sleek
2. Sound Quality – Good
3. Phone (both Calling & Receiving) – Good
4. Video/Phone Priority – If you are watching a video and someone calls you, the video pauses to give you the option of taking the call
5. Video Quality – Very Good on Wi-Fi; OK on 3G.
We played three songs – the hot favorite Pappu Can’t Dance from the recent Bollywood hit Jaane Tu Ya Jaane Na and the Tamil song En Chella Peru Apple (Pokiri) from YouTube on both 3G and Wi-Fi. Yes, we also watched baby elephant Neetu Singh (Ranbhir Kapoor’s mother) displaying her plump thighs in the Lekar Hum, Diwana Dil dance number (Yaadon Ki Baarat).
6. iTunes – One of the biggest draws of the iPhone is the integration of Apple’s iTunes music store and the ease of buying songs. We checked out English, Hindi and Tamil songs – there is a cornucopia of Indian music out there. Most tracks are priced at 99 cents.
7. Internet Access – Unlimited data access. Fast on 3G; Better on Wi-Fi
8. Overall Look & Feel – Good
9. Headphone – OK
10. Menus – Intuitive. Our iPhone clock came with the default time set to Cupertino, CA. We changed it to New York and added New Delhi as well.
11. Maps: Decent
12. Location Services: Decent. iPhone 3G found several Pizza stores in our neighborhood.
13. App Store: To download apps (even if they are free), you need to set up an iTunes account providing your credit card info.

It took just a few minutes to set up our account since we already had iTunes software installed on one of our computers. After setting up our iTunes account, we downloaded the free New York Times application, which took just a few seconds on our Wi-Fi connection. Once the NYT app was downloaded, an NYT icon appeared on our iPhone home screen.

We like the fact that there are tons of free native iPhone 3G app and in any case most of them cost less than $10.00.

What We Hate about the iPhone 3G:
1. Buying experience at AT&T Store – Our AT&T sales assistant was a clueless, blithering idiot who had no idea what he was doing
2. Limited 3G coverage – No 3G in our area. iPhone defaults to slower Edge Network where 3G is absent. So we use Wi-Fi at home.
3. Crappy 2-megapixel camera
4. No video camera
5. Standing in line Outside AT&T Store – 1HR-10Min (on Saturday; was worse on Friday)
6. Time Inside AT&T store – 1HR 15Min
7. High Cost of this Made-in-China phone
8. Two-Year Contract

iPhone 3G Some Key Specs:

Size and Weight:
Height: 4.5 inches (115.5 mm)
Width:  2.4 inches (62.1 mm)
Depth:  0.48 inch (12.3 mm)
Weight: 4.7 ounces (133 grams)

* 3.5-inch (diagonal) widescreen Multi-Touch display
* 480-by-320-pixel resolution at 163 ppi
* Support for display of multiple languages and characters simultaneously

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