Since opinions are dime-a-dozen, I thought I’ll write one of my own – on the month-old iPhone 3G. Thats right – I got mine on d-day – July 11. I thought the iPhone would be a good topic to start blogging again.

Not having played with an Ipod Touch or the first generation Iphone before,  I felt like Alice in Wonderland on laying my hands on the IPhone 3G. Whats more, the novelty has not died yet, unlike some of my other love affairs with tech toys that I have flirted with in recent times.  

Is it perfect? Hell no! Can it be improved? Of course, yes. Would I buy one again in its current state? Absolutely! Sure, people complain about it not being capable of sending MMS messages, recording live video, having a meagre 2MP camera, missing copy-paste capabilities.. the list goes on. Personally, it gave me a tough time just trying to unlock it (I am on the 3 network). Not to mention its crashed on me twice in the last month! Why, oh why then, you skeptics might ask, that I would buy one again in its current state. Two words – simplicity and futuristic.

Let me explain…

Simplicity

This sleek telecommuting thingy is one of the most amazing pieces of disruptive technology that I have come across in recent times that, while capable of almost everything that one has come to expect of smartphones, is also damn simple to use. I could give it to my granny, and she could start using it without a lot of help. Once upon a time, Nokia used to be the leader when it came to making simple-to-use mobile phones. But at the time, phones were just that – phones. Nothing more, nothing less. I can be modest and yet safely say that I am no simpleton when it comes to using technology. The iPhone 3G has brought simplicity back to phones, and thats what I love about it. Multi-touch, context-specific buttons, touch scrolling, among others means the device behaves in a pragmatic fashion, rather than in ways being bound by the traditional limitations of hardware and software, like other phones of current times are. 

Futuristic

Crystal ball gazers, or tech pundits as they are often called, have, time and again stated that more and more computing will be done on smaller devices. Pieces of technology around the home will be connected to each other. Fridges will be connected to the Internet and will be able to order milk online, just in time. We have heard it all before, and surely, as prototypes,  these ideas already exist. The iPhone 3G is the one consumer device that makes many of these ideas a reality. Applications (or Apps in iPhone 3G’s lingo) like Apple’s own ‘Remote’ means I could be controlling music on my Mac’s iTunes, which streams music though my living room speakers, while not being physically close to either. (Products like these cost in excess of AUD $1000, meaning that the iPhone3G pays for itself on day one even if you were to buy it outright.) 

I can today capture photos on the phone, upload them to my Flickr at the same time or send it to location-aware social networking sites. Or I could blog something on this very site, while on the bus on my way back from work. And if I were bored, I could always play my game of Sudoku, or listen to online streaming radio.

Quite some time back, a futuristic idea kind of fascinated me – Smart alarm clocks, which would know of your flight timings, know the route to the airport, and wake you up early if it detects adverse traffic conditions. Coming to think it – we are not that far from this idea becoming a reality. The iPhone has an alarm clock, has email and calendar functionality – which means it is capable of knowing your flight timings, the A-GPS knows of your location, and the use of Google maps also means it knows of traffic conditions (not for us Australians, yet). And if there is one company that can combine these smarts, its Apple.

The Quirks

Yes, the phone only has a 2MP camera, with neither zoom nor flash. Hopefully, Apple will listen to its customers and upgrade its camera. And yes – no recording capabilities and copy / paste. But hey, these are just software capabilities, which in all likelihood, Apple may already be working on, and in theory, it might just require a software update to bring these capabilities to the iPhone. The point is, it does not matter which phone you buy, there will always be some things that you’ll miss.

Almost forgot – the phone does not have MMS capabilties either. And Macbooks don’t have floppy drives. Thanks Apple.