Sounds about right: What a geek does with an iPhone in the first two days

Welcome to Black Friday, the traditional start of the Christmas shopping season. I suspect there will be a bunch of people who are hoping Santa will get them an iPhone. Here's one story of what lies in store.

One of my friends stood in line on the first day of iPhone availability and got one of the highly-anticipated gadgets. We happened to get together two days later, and of course there was a lot of showing off and playing with the phone's features. But for me what was telling was the part of the phone which shows you the phone usage statistics. After two days, the numbers looked something like this:

  • Data downloaded from the Internet: 500MB
  • Minutes talking on the phone: 2

Sounds about right.

Comments (21)
  1. gedoe says:

    I bet those 2 minutes were to configure his voicemail :P

  2. David Walker says:

    There’s a silly iPhone commercial that shows a guy who says "I used to have to gather up all my gadgets when I left the house in the morning — my cell phone, my camera, my MP3 player, and my PDA.  Now all I have to grab is my iPhone".

    I don’t need to grab ANY of that stuff when I leave the house in the morning.  I don’t even have a cell phone.

    It’s nice to be unreachable on occasion.  I listen to music in my car (satellite radio), at home on my computer, and at work.  I don’t need a music player, or a camera, or a phone, or a Web browser, with me 24×7.  

  3. Rich says:

    There’s a silly iPhone commercial that shows a guy

    who says "I used to have to gather up all my gadgets

    when I left the house in the morning — my cell phone,

    my camera, my MP3 player, and my PDA.  Now all I have

    to grab is my iPhone".

    And the reason it didn’t sell in the UK is… we still need to gather up our cell phone (iPhone doesn’t do 3G) and camera (iPhone camera is, quite frankly, rubbish). Really, it’s just a more-expensive iPod touch.

  4. Stephen Jones says:

    Now, if Adobe would do Acrobat Reader for mobile phones (or MS would beat them to it!).

  5. Nawak says:

    Not having 3G was a choice I can start to understand… I don’t live in the US and I don’t know if it’s sufficiently developped there  to justify the increase in power consumption. (and if it is sufficiently developped, then it’s a dumb choice since, well, it’s an internet phone)

    But not taking videos? Not making MMS? If you’re going to make a gadget phone, do it all the way!

    I’ll pass this one and wait for a V2 or V3 (and reasonable calling/data plans)

  6. sandman says:

    Adobe do do Acrobat for Mobiles, or at least Symbian mobiles.

    BOth my nokia N70 & my  new N95 both vame with acrobat.

    OiPhone: I agree in the UK it pointless, it’s locked down harder than it competitors and it’s air interface isn’t as fully featured. (no 3G).

  7. Name required says:

    The fun part is the folks on TV "using" an iPhone and they can’t even be bothered to hold it right side up!

  8. MikeC says:

    Meanwhile, at the launch in the UK, stores were empty, as everyone realises that the phone is over-hyped and too expensive* and the calling plans it’s available with are, just simply, quite awful (compared to "normal" calling plans).

    First weekend sales were 26,500 activations. Even allowing for ones that were bought and not activated, the chances of it being higher than 30k are pretty much nil. Quite a bit less than the anticipated 100k first weekend sales..

    *£269 – c£80 more than in the US for the 8GB model.

  9. Igor Levicki says:

    Difference in battery life comes from different network settings, i.e. how often phone has to poll the network and to switch to another cell. Some network operators set faster polling rates and then your battery goes flat faster. It is that simple.

    Furthermore 3G assumes you will use your phone more for Internet and video which means its display (which consumes biggest amount of power) will be on all the time while it can switch off to save power when you are just having a regular call.

    Finally, using internet over Wi-Fi is faster and cheaper (even free in selected areas) than over 3G.

  10. Dean Harding says:

    "the increase in power consumption. "

    Is it really as bad as Jobs tries to tell us it is, though? I mean, my Motorola is 3G and it’s battery lasts for a good week or so before I need to charge it (mind you, I don’t use it all *that* much…). My GSM mobile (a Windows Smartphone) is lucky to last a couple of days (though, I use it more often and it’s much older than the Moto and I think the battery is starting to go). Still, what is the actual *difference* between battery life of a 3G vs. 2G phone?

    My bet would be that it’s not really all that significant…

  11. Stephen Jones says:

    –Adobe do do Acrobat for Mobiles, or at least Symbian mobiles."——

    I have a Sony K750i. There is a commercial pdf reader for J2ME phones called mobile pdf but it is unusably buggy.

  12. Leif Arne Storset says:

    I hear that the actual voice quality on the iPhone is bad too. I would probably stop talking after 2 minutes too! Maybe it shouldn’t even be called the iPhone, just the i.

    @Stephen Jones:

    Adobe does have Reader for Windows Mobile, but it’s useless since it doesn’t reflow the text for tiny screens.

  13. Aaargh! says:

    "Still, what is the actual *difference* between battery life of a 3G vs. 2G phone?"

    My Nokia has a 2 day battery life on UMTS, and about a day on HSDPA.

    However, it is set to check 2 IMAP mail boxes every 5 minutes, and I do a lot of websurfing on my phone so that probably reduces battery life a bit.

  14. Stephen Jones says:

    I used to use the Adobe Reader for Pocket PC and for Palm OS and it was fine.

    Looking on the Adobe site, I can’t see an Adobe Reader for Windows mobile. Possibly the Pocket PC version installs, but as it reflows the screen for a PDA not a smartphone, it will be problematical as you have said.

  15. rdamiani says:

    iPhone voice quality is no better or worse than any other phone. The cell network’s compression requirements is where call quality dies.

    After giving up on using the internet on WM devices, the iPhone’s capabilities are a surprise. It’s browser plus it’s high resolution screen makes the ‘real’ internet actually useful, aside from flash-only pages of course. EDGE on my iPhone  with ‘real’ pages feels faster than mobile-optimized versions of those pages did over EVDO on my old XV-6700. I’m using a lot more data on my iPhone than I ever did on my XV-6700.

  16. Bob says:

    What bothers me about the ad David Walker mentioned is the guy also says he has to grab one cell phone for calls and one for text messaging and email.  Are there sane people who actually do that?  What, you can’t make calls on a Blackberry?  It just sounds so contrived to make the iPhone seem more useful.  Hey, it replaces 4 devices instead of 3!  Sure, if you always carry 2 different cell phones.

  17. ChipH says:

    Got my first full month’s bill over the weekend:

    278 minutes talk time

    68172kb data

    With the previous phone (Moto Razr) I had a 20mb/month data plan so I could occasionally check email or handle the odd office emergency.  With the iPhone’s unlimited data plan, I just don’t watch my bytecounts anymore.  I can understand why Apple/AT&T don’t want people using their iPhone as a Bluetooth modem — the Edge network can be slow at times already.  With people using a laptop over it, their network would go into even more of a meltdown.

  18. Tim says:

    "Filed under: Non-Computer"

    Harsh, yet justifiable.


  19. Ricardo says:

    i don’t know what’s all the fuss with the iPhone. It’s too expensive and the technical specifications aren’t that great. I have for example a Motorolla cell phone with 3G connection, Videocall, Internet access with 1,8Mbps bandwith, 1.2 Mpixel camera and a 1GB card. I can watch TV, movies, listen to mp3,… etc. The cell phone, without the SD card cost me 170 euros a year ago here in Portugal!! Why the hell would anyone buy an iPhone here in Europe? Just for the touch screen? A few weeks ago i saw in TV the release of the iPhone in Germany and the reporter asked a german guy why was he buying it, what does it have so special? And the guy said that it was the first cell phone to have an Internet connection!! WTF???

  20. GreaseMonkey says:

    There’s this guy who’s waiting for coverage in February, so "it’s not an iPhone, it’s just an i". Oh yeah, seeing as I hear nobody likes AT&T, he’s patched his phone to support other mobile networks.

    Nazi == BAD. Don’t *EVER* do that. (Or don’t ever do it again, for that matter; there once was a browser called Netscape…)

    If you were to use Acrobat Reader on a PDA, it would kill your eyes after some time.

    > "I used to have to gather up all my gadgets when I left the house in the morning — my cell phone, my camera, my MP3 player, and my PDA.  Now all I have to grab is my iPhone".

    But what do I grab in the morning? My cell-phone, and my pad. No, not PDA, my writing pad. It’s got a bigger screen, too.

    We can’t even get the iPhone in New Zealand. Of course, I don’t think we even have iTunes, so all we have is CD ripping (which IMHO should be legal) and LimeWire (and the others; "see it first on BitTorrent").

    Oh yeah, mobile internet is a rip-off here. Although to think of it, so is our "broadband", too.

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