John on March 6th, 2010
  • iPad -> 4 weeks from today!
  • Just when you thought you had heard it all! http://tinyurl.com/911ignorance
  • At BJ’s trying to explain that is not necessary to buy kitty litter and cat food for Stephie’s stuffed cat!
  • Bertucci’s for Dinner!

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John on February 27th, 2010
  • Really impressed at how easy iPad development is going to be for those already familiar with iPhone development!

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John on November 8th, 2009

C’mon AT&T you can do better than this – can’t you? Downright Silly!

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John on June 13th, 2008

An internal email leaked on Thursday offers more details (and confirms others) about the pending iPhone 3G launch, including an “unbrick” procedure by AT&T/Apple at first purchase, higher data pricing plans, a three device limit at AT&T stores, among others

read more | digg story

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John on September 13th, 2007

iPhone with Hand Model

When it debuted at the end of June for $599, I highly criticized any and all who blindly plunked down their hard-money for the “product of the decade.”  $599 was entirely too high (IMHO) for a device which featured functionality which many of us already have in multiple portable devices.  In my case, having been a recent purchaser of a 2nd generation Nano & recent convert over to a Blackberry 8800, the iPhone was a sexy yet dramatically overpriced toy that I just could not justify. However, that all changed on September 5th with the most recent Steve Jobs media-event.  Like many others, I had expected the news event to announce one or more changes to the iPod product line.  We all suspected an “phone less” iPhone, it was indeed introduced as the iPod Touch.  With capacities @ 8GB & 16GB, this device would deliver a product offering that replicates the beautiful touch interface that the iPhone introduced.  However, as I fell in love with concept of a sexier iPod I also came to learn that the iPod Touch would only offer some of the functions of the iPhone.  I came to fear that if I bought one, I would quickly come to regret that I did not have the full feature set offered by the iPhone.  What I wasn’t expecting was for Jobs to end his presentation with the declaration that the 8GB iPhone would be slashed by $200.  Immediately, my mind began to scheme.

Before I could bring myself to enter an Apple store for the first time, I had to resolve some issues in my mind:

  1. Did I want to carry yet another device?  I was already carrying around a BB8800, an iPod Nano and a Sony PSP. Well, my daily train commute justifies these indulgences for me, but I have to admit that having to turn off my iPod, rip the earbuds out of of my ears all to answere the inevitable “when are you coming home” phone calls was becoming annoying!
  2. I had (initially at least) fully subsidized my BB8800 purchase and was completely satisfied with the service and utility of the Blackberry service.  Being able to answer compose emails while perusing my Audible.COM collection offered me a lot of enjoyment on the way home from work.
  3. If I were to indeed buy an iPhone, what would I do with the iPod Nano and that I had purchased not more than 3 1/2 months ago?
  4. Was my flirtation with the iPhone merely a product of the Apple marketing machine?  Would I still be happy with my iPhone 1 year later when undoubtedly larger capacity formats would undoubtedly be available?

Well, before I tell you how I ended up rationalizing the purchase – let me share with you a few of my personal thoughts after just one week of usage:

  • As much I love the Nano, the increase in form-factor on the iPhone is really not that big of a deal to me.  This phone is still pretty small and surprisingly does not draw much attention to itself when in my pocket.  In fact it is smaller in almost all regards when compared to the BB8800.
  • Adequate Storage?: it has 8GB of flash-based storage (not a problem for me).  Really now, how many songs, podcasts & pictures can you fit on an 8GB device?  Well the answer is a lot and certainly enough to hold you over until you redock with iTunes and modify your favorite playlists.
  • The touch interface is beautiful, and I really enjoy using it.  I think I spent 3 hours the first night just playing my way thorugh all of the menus and configurations options.  Once you pick up one of these, you’ll never want to go fuddle around with a Motorola Razr again!
  • Built-in WiFi: granted I was not doing that much downloading of data with the BB8800, but navigating pages over the AT&T Edge network is painfully frustrating.  The fact that I now may be able to jump on a free WiFi network wherever I go is definitely a luxury that I wouldn’t want to give up.
  • The Safari Browser:  I was really surprised with how intuitive and how rich an experience that this browser offers.  Being able to zoom in and out of web content and be able to have multiple sites loaded at once is a big plus!  The iPhone is the first mobile device that truly makes browsing on a hand-held enjoyable from the get-go.
  • I down right resent the fact that I had to spend $9.95 for an earbud adapter that allows my Shure SE310’s to be plugged into the device.  Why Apple, did you temporarily disenfranchise the thousands of customers who replaced the default white-earbuds with more expensive aftermarket product offerings?
  • Why Apple, did you not provide even the most rudimentary slip cover for the phone?  I’ve since purchased a leather case from http://www.case-mate.com/phones/apple that is quite elegant and yet still manages to retain some of the minimalism that make Apple products the works of art that they are.
  • Battery Life Concerns: After 4 full charges, I’m getting better battery life than some of the early FUD mongers were claiming.  However, as much as I like “Airplane Mode” (a usable way to preserve battery powere when not needing the phone/internet functionality), why couldn’t they provide the “Auto On/Off” scheduling that the BB8800 offers? I’m getting about 2.5 – 3 days between full charges.  If I could go 4-5 days between charges I’d be thrilled!

Ok, so how did I end up rationalizing the purchasing? Well a couple of dynamics came into play:

  1. My employer is already reimbursing my monthly BB8800 voice and data plans
  2. I accepted an offer from a friend to buy my 8GB iPod Nano
  3. I decided to keep my BB8800 and add the iPhone as a 3rd  line on my already existing AT&T Family Plan.  The 3rd line and the unlimited data plan for it is only costing me $29.90 a month as compared to the $59 that it would have cost me had I added the IPhone under its own plan.
  4. I aggressively researched and found some ways to reduce my monthly cell phone bill (pre-iPhone coverage) to a degree that came close to offsetting the aformentioned $29.90 additional monthly charge.
  5. The final rationalization: Had I not already had the BB8800 and the iPod Nano would I have been willing to put out the original asking price of $599 for the iPhone? Well this is a difficult one; but then I remind myself that I put almost this same amount ($550) for my BB8800 and the iPod Nano before I knew I was going to re-sell or receive a subsidy for them.  After I take the subsidy and re-sale of the Nano into account, my net cost for the iPhone is $500.

All in all, I really like this device. It’s not perfect, nor is it meant for strict business use.  However, it is clearly the best blend of phone & portable multimedia that we’ve seen so far.  Now of course all of this economic hocus-pocus goes up in smoke if Jobs rolls out another price drop within the next 12 months.

The $399 Question:

Does this phone have the power to turn me into an Apple Fan-Boy? Only time will tell ….

/8-)

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