Have we been let down by Apple's iPhone 3.0?
17th Mar 2009 | 19:04
Opinion: What's the point in releasing a flawed device?
The recent announcement of iPhone 3.0 firmware upgrade has left us a little cold - mostly because we're used to Apple springing a big surprise.
While the upgrade has ticked many of the boxes we were hoping to get checked, we can't help but feel like there's something missing from this event.
We really like the fact copy-and-paste, MMS, A2DP, peer to peer gaming and landscape texting have all appeared (even though we were less bothered about MMS in our predictions piece).
But why is this important to the world? How does Apple manage to create a device that's lusted after the world over, and for it to have so many missing features? Sure, the copy and paste interface is probably among the best out there, but come on, it's not that important that it deserves hundreds of web pages dedicated to it possibly appearing on the third upgrade.
That's right, the third. MMS support, something the Nokia 7650 could do back in 2002, has suddenly made its way into the iPhone. Why has it taken so long? If the hardware supported it, why wasn't A2DP available until now?
And then we move onto what wasn't covered: for instance the absence of Flash integration was a topic posed to the Apple people, and the short answer was 'they weren't covering that issue today'.
It was a similar statement to the one made when Steve Jobs mentioned the camera on the iPhone 3G... simply stating it was 2MP and moving very swiftly on.
The reason for the hoopla is simply so hype can be generated again and again around a single device. Don't forget, Apple has managed to crowbar one per cent of the worldwide market share for mobile phones based on the launch of 1.5 handsets.
By leaving missing pieces in the software, there's always room for improvement, and people will be clamouring for more until they get it, such is the impressive spin the Apple marketing department manages to put on its devices.
And that's before you even consider the hardware side of things... there are well-documented shortcomings in the device itself in the opinion of many users, not least the poor quality of the camera and the lack of video recording capability (which we hear is due to a hardware issue too).
Because of this we were all hoping that maybe, maybe a new device was going to be launched today. After all, it was an Apple event, and what event like this is complete without 'One more thing'?
But perhaps that's slightly wishful thinking, us like the rest of the world getting caught up in a frenzy over finally being able to send messages to our friends with pictures in. Something we've been able to do for three quarters of a decade, something you can do on a £50 PAYG phone.
Ah well, you have to respect the amount of buzz Apple can generate, and who knows... perhaps in June we'll be getting our next dose of Apple mega-hype when another 'unknown' event is called, where maybe a certain Mr Jobs will make his triumphant return to say one more thing before whipping out the iPhone Nano.