Review: 3G iPhone


The actual phone itself is just a programme that you can access from the home screen and is average to say the least. Simple things like transferring contacts from the phone onto the SIM card or selecting multiple contacts are unavailable, while the SMS programme still lacks the ability to forward or copy-paste text.

The camera is another feature that hasn't undergone any upgrade and although image quality is fairly impressive, the absence of flash, auto-focus, optical zoom or video recording takes it well behind the curve.

The only saving grace is that pictures once taken, can be expanded or shrunk or moved around by literally squeezing them on the screen with two fingers or flicking them with a single finger. This is the quintessential iPhone experience and typically the first thing you would want to show off about your gizmo.

The "iPod" programme that controls music and movies is great if you're familiar with the iPod-iTunes system. If you're like most Indian users who get music onto their phones through Bluetooth transfers or memory cards, you're in for a steep learning curve.

After all there's no external memory option on the iPhone and the Bluetooth feature -- which most other high-end phones exploit for data transfer and wireless music -- is configured to only allow handsfree calling.

Of course the lack of an FM radio adds insult to the injury of the iTunes music store not being made available for Indian users. Basically, any music or video that you want to get onto your phone has to be done through the iTunes programme on your computer which often involves some amount of re-formatting.

Exceptions of course include free content such as podcasts, which can be downloaded and the YouTube programme which allows you to watch streaming video from the site if you're connected via Wi-Fi or a GPRS/EDGE network.

The other key feature that wasn't available on the older iPhone is the assisted GPS (Global Positioning System). The word "assisted" is there since the GPS is able to home onto your location faster thanks to some assistance from the nearest cellular towers that are feeding the network to your iPhone.

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