iPhone 3G experiences (part 1)…
spent the weekend all, with the new iPhone 3G!!
at 7/11 friday, the tokyo city was like a mess, the major big stores which sell cellphones were full of people lining up trying to be the first to get iPhone 3G. although I don’t think it’s worth time to line there just wait, I got up pretty early at friday, going out to see if I got the chance to get a line ticket for buying it.
fortunately when I went to the Sinjuku station at 9AM, there was still a Softbank shop dispatching the ordering tickets, I was told to go to that store at 3PM to buy the iPhone 3G. so I went back to work, and coming back to the store at 2:50PM, waiting in the queue about 30mins, and spent about 30 mins for all the subscriber registratoin process, finally , I got my shiny black iPhone 3G with 16GB ram! wow!!
back to office, seems I was the only one that get the iphone 3G, some of my colleagues came to toy around the phone, and I was also busy on other things that had no time to set the phone up. after the end of friday. finally on the weekend , I can have time for a read through of the iPhone 3G tips and tricks pages and setup my iphone 3G correctly.
as the conclusion I have to say, that this new iPhone 3G is really amazing! too amazing that it’s likely the most best cellphone I’ve used until now. the touch screen, the sensitivity, the UI, the OS, the unlimited posibilities of software development and support, the online store mechanism, it’s all so smooth integrated that for a normal user can just easily manage it. terrific!!
beside the apple things, the Microsoft Exchange Server ActiveSync support is the best part for business. my company using exchange server and we sync our mail/contact/calender every minutes onto our windows mobile devices. iPhone3G just did it so smoothly that I can just put in my email address and domain id/pwd also point out my activesync server, then all its done! with the push mail ability that I can easily get my mail on my phone when it just arrived the server mail box. the mail browsing interface was also a good one. can’t stop playing it around!!
the gmail support is also good, by adopting IMAP on gmail service, gmail can push near real time mail to iPhone 3G without manually sync the mail folders. besides, if you got your domain email hosted by gmail, you are immidiately capable to use your domain mail account with iPhone 3G gmail support, just the same as normal gmail accounts.
I did try the Yahoo mail too. the result is that, using the US yahoo mail account (end with yahoo.com), the iPhone Yahoo mail integration works fine without problems. but when using the Japan yahoo account (end with yahoo.co.jp) , it won’t work and iPhone will keep telling you something like the id and password are not correct. since iPhone is trying to work in IMAP way by default, I guess that its the Japan Yahoo mail server still not integrated with iPhone system. by selecting “other” in the new mail settings and input the mail address and password, iPhone successfully added the Japan Yahoo mail account by using SMTP/POP3 way, althought this will lost the push mail abilities.
With Japan iPhone 3G launch, SoftBank prepared a Mail(i) service for iPhone user that will included a “@ i.softbank.jp” mail address for iPhone 3G, to have the default push mail abilities just like those traditional Japan cellphone mail did. this one is also easy to setup by just using the “other” mail addition inside the setting panels. with this mail account, it seems that SoftBank has did some trick that, when there was mail coming, the iPhone will just pop out a message telling you that you got a mail, just like the ordinary Japan cellphone! cool! a real push mail system and I bet with this one the Japanese people will just switching, cellphone mail is everything here in Japan!!
Mobile Me is still not available now for test.
at last, I’ve successfully added 2 of my gmail account, 1 softbank iphone mail, 1 my domain email which hosted on gmail, and one of my corp exchange server mail with calendar and contacts, also the corp Global Address List (GAL) for corp user search! business and private, all in the same little shiny iPhone 3G!! never be better!!
During sunday time I took this iPhone 3G to hang out with my friends, trying to test the GPS functionalities. the result is pretty good! with the local integration of Google Maps, I can quickly locate myself, and search for local restaurants, although it can not tell me the drive direction like in US, I was able to find the place I like to go and quicky got there. I just like those hi-tech!!!
got some bad side of iPhone 3G? well, a little.
first, the battery life. if you keep toying your iPhone, like using Google Map with GPS, while checking your email, browing the web pages, taking some pics using the built-in camera, your iPhone won’t normally hang on for 3.5 hours… but still pretty good enough.
second, actually while my using when I was outside, the iPhone 3G hangs once when I was browsing pages and checking google maps, no reactions at all on iPhone and I have to cold reset the iPhone to take it back to action. reminded myself of the windows mobile phone… just this once…
third, the actually price. in Japan if you want to have this iPhone 3G, for 16gb model, you have to pay about 8000 yen a month for 26 months, including the price for the iPhone 3G hardware, also the unlimited internet usage of a month. although Steve said that it’s $199 for 8gb and $299 for a 16gb iPhone 3G, the overall price for consumers is still expensive I think.
as in a geek’s point of view, my overall score for this new iPhone 3G is pretty high. it just beats all the cellphone I’ve used, and I loved it pretty much!!
to use your iPhone 3G efficiently, you still have to re-think how you manage your whole emails, in order to take the whole goodies of the push mail abilities on iPhone. I’ll try to write something about how I re-org my management of emails across seveal mail accounts, to be able to back up all the mails locally, while still keep those mails on server side to be able to view on iPhone, on my part 2 iPhone 3G experiences. stay tuned…