Its been a week with my iPhone4 and what a week its been for the company that produced it.
As you no doubt know by now Apple confessed to some issues with placing the antenna band on the outside of the iPhone4 can lead to signal drop off. They also promised free cases/bumpers for those who have bought or will buy the new iPhone4 to alleviate any concerns about the ability to use the iPhone4 when/where you want to.
Having been an iPhone user for the last 2 years (iPhone 3G version) I can tell you that the iPhone has no problem….dropping calls and losing WiFi connectivity from time to time. Blame ATT. Blame Apple. Blame your zip code/city’s lack of approving new cell towers. Long story short – what made the iPhone great to me is that despite all of these hangups and headaches, the OS is simply the best thing out there and for multimedia like Apple’s other desktop/laptop products – it’s mostly peerless.
Having experienced this for the last two years, to me the iPhone4 is a great upgrade. Sure it still has some of the issues of the iPhone3G with respect to dropped calls (though in my experience so far its been about 50% less), but the ability to surf the web and work with some graphics intensive apps has been tremendously boosted. The A4 style chip does seem to eat up battery life (a little more so than the previous generation despite the bigger battery size) at the benefit of having a much fast, sharper and clearer iPhone.
I’m still petrified about dropping the thing — I am counting down the days until a fully silicone case becomes available for the iPhone4, that aside the nearly resounding opinion on this product is pretty clear, especially through September 30th. You’re getting a pretty amazing piece of technology that’s an above average cellphone with a free case.
Now in the category of excellent cellphones with solid multimedia/web surfing abilities – be sure to check out the HTC “Evo4” from Sprint and the excellent “HTC Incredible” and Motorola “DroidX” from Verizon. The latter not only features one of the largest screens on the the market, but also doubles as its own wireless hub – linking to to the web across your other wireless devices.
Thanks to a dusty Christmas Apple gift card I took the leap of faith to pick up an iPhone4.
Truth be told I ordered this thing before Antennagate came to light. So with all the scathing reviews in the headlines my expectations were fully grounded as the device arrived at the house yesterday.
Ordering online was actually fairly easy and felt better than waiting in those increasingly crowded Airstream-styled retail stores.
Unboxing & Activation:
The build quality and packaging was mostly pristine, except for a slight dent on the black edging around the lower right glass. Overall the device had done well on its multi-stop journey from China.
I connected the iPhone4 to iTunes and following a fairly straightforward set of instructions made Apple simple was able to activate my iPhone with 3-5 minutes. That surprised me. There is something to be said for that – activating your new cellphone in 180-300 seconds. That is outstanding.
Bump(er) and Run
Before even attempting making calls and browsing the internet, I immediately slapped on the Apple-branded bumper to the aluminum siding. The bumper fits well and apparently is the perfect foil for call/internet connectivity issues. In fact the phone with bumper wrap looks pretty solid. Is it worth $30 bucks? Heck no. But is it worth it to avoid dealing with one of the biggest gaffes in cellphone design/engineering? Absolutely. (Note to Apple PR: It will be even better if made free to those who purchase the iPhone4 or an iTunes/Apple store credit for $30 for those who already have the iPhone4 – cheaper than recalls and class action lawsuits IMHO).
Call Quality & Function
Let me say this – the new chip powering the iPhone4 is stunningly fast. The screen is outstanding. The OS is the among best in its class (I still feel Android offers more potential). It nearly makes up for all the antenna/wireless call issues… So far I’m thinking it does, but time will tell.
I can already clearly see the next Achilles heel on this device is the questionable choice of putting glass on *both* sides of the phone. Its 2x the fear or breaking the phone if it drops to the ground.
I’ve already begun my search for a silicon-full body case for this thing since I’ve decided the iPhone4 might best be described as the Swarovski of cell phones.
But so far…like Steve says – it just works. How long will it hold up worries me. I guess time and Apple Care will tell.