The Media Guru

Jun 12, 2008

Yay! Remember, I did inform you about it! So here it is...
Update 19.12.2008: iPhone 3G at last in Mauritius - & it sucks!

iPhone 3G will be available on the 11th July in the above 22 countries.

& "coming soon" in the above countries, bringing it to a total of 70 countries...

Including Mauritius. :D

Here's the Mauritius page on the Apple iPhone site. Contains a standard description of iPhone 3G features.

& a link to! No surprise, iPhone 3G will be an Orange exclusivity in Mauritius, hence network-locked to Orange. I don't know how exactly Orange will market it, but just be cautious of any unlimited phone plans. Locked price should be affordable, but will it be available unlocked? Best choice would be to buy it subsidised (abroad?) & then jailbreak/unlock it without subscribing to the network. :)

The most blogged about, most hyped & the most expected product was unveiled this Monday (11pm in Mauritius/11am in the US) by his Steveness. LOL

As expected, the iPhone, in its 2nd iteration, has its fair share of oomph & huhs... But it still managed to live up to its expectations.

The Specs:
- Height: 115.5 mm
- Width: 62.1 mm
- Depth: 12.3 mm
- Weight: 133 grams

Cellular and wireless
- UMTS/HSDPA (850, 1900, 2100 MHz)
- GSM/EDGE (850, 900, 1800, 1900 MHz)
- Wi-Fi (802.11b/g)
- Bluetooth 2.0 + EDR
- Assisted GPS

- 3.5-inch (diagonal) widescreen Multi-Touch display
- 480-by-320-pixel resolution at 163 ppi
- Support for display of multiple languages and characters simultaneously

- 2.0 megapixels Camera located on back of iPhone.
- Photo geotagging
- iPhone and third-party application integration

- Accelerometer
- Proximity sensor
- Ambient light sensor

- Built-in rechargeable lithium-ion battery0
- Charging via USB to computer system or power adapter
- Talk time: Up to 5 hours on 3G/Up to 10 hours on 2G
- Standby time: Up to 300 hours
- Internet use: Up to 5 hours on 3G/Up to 6 hours on Wi-Fi
- Video playback: Up to 7 hours
- Audio playback: Up to 24 hours
Check the Full Specs on Apple

It was high time the iPhone got a 3G connection & with tri-band UMTS, it's a truly worldwide phone. & if you want a faster connection, Apple have managed to add on HSPDA - & with the on-board WiFi b/g chip, that should be more than enough to keep you online 24/24.

Apple says that its Safari browser is faster than the N95 on 3G connections. LOL
Both Safari & Nokia Browser use Webkit - there shouldn't be any big difference (unless Apple is using the latest superfast Webkit).

The iPhone 3G has A-GPS (finally!). A much-demanded feature, you can now use it with the built-in Google Maps. Alas for Mauritian users, I doubt they would enjoy the same interactive maps as US users.

The new 3G iPhone has kept the same look, except that it now has a glossy, more curved back - available in white & black for 16GB & only black for 8GB. It's a slight disappointment that Apple couldn't fit in the 32GB of the Touch in the iPhone...

The final version of the iPhone SDK opens up OS X mobile to the thousands of app developers waiting to fill in the lack of features. Except that Apple is still keeping a tight leash on what's being installed (& cashing on it) via its App Store. But no worry, there'll always be a parallel universe of hacked & open-source apps ready to enrich your iPhone experience!

Quite a lot of apps were demonstrated - including games making use of the iPhone's 3D capabilities & accelerometer.

Medical apps (huh?)

Ebay, Typepad & some other tidy apps...

With the 8GB model at $199 (Rs 5600) & the 16GB model at $299 (Rs 8400), the subsidised prices are highly affordable - but beware of the network plans! Apple are selling the iPhone at minimum profits, but they expect to cash on lucrative network deals & the App Store. iPhones can only be purchased if activated in-store in the US & UK. No hint of how it'll be sold internationally.

There are a few glitches as well. There's no front camera for video-conferencing & the back camera is still 2MP. No video recording either. No support for MMS has been mentioned. No built-in IM messenger as well. Where's the copy-paste feature? Battery is still not removable but battery life is still decent.

But the biggest disappointment is Apple's decision not to allow background processes & hence multi-tasking. Steve Jobs demonstrated how awful (but incredibly powerful) Windows Mobile's Task Manager is & how Apple has invented a new way of receiving IM messages. Unfortunately, Apple Push Notification is quite complicated & extremely limited in application. How many app makers will setup an external server to ping your iPhone?
Mac OS X mobile fails terribly as an OS because it lacks multi-tasking. I can use multiple apps & background processes on my 4-year-old S60 7610. Apple should learn something from Nokia...

The .mac Apple scam has been rebranded into Mobile Me - a bundle of online storage, web apps (photos, calendar, etc) & cross-platform syncing suite - all for $99. I wonder how many fanboys will fall for that...

Overall, the iPhone 3G is a great product with standard specs. Although the OS isn't that great, Apple can still improve a lot on it, the iPhone Update via iTunes being highly flexible. Nothing compares to the multi-touch UI...
Well, I pity all iPhone gen-1 early adopters who've paid a very high price for crap hardware - that includes quite a few Mauritians! LOL :D
With a highly competitive subsidised price, iPhone 3G is a smartphone i'd gladly recommend to everyone. The really innovative UI makes up for everything else.

So where's Nokia?
Rest-assured, the World Number 1 handset maker isn't sleeping. As a proof here are spyshots of the N79, N85 & the Tube (5800 XpressMedia).

The N79 is radical departure from Nokia's new Nseries design. Looks more like the successor of the N82.

The N85 seems like a non-DVB-H version of the N96. Notice the dual LED flashes & the protected camera lens instead of the stand.

The Tube (5800 XpressMedia) looks like almost every other touchscreen device... including one that has been mentioned in this post… ;)

PS. The Orange network was lately being upgraded - that's why many users couldn't make calls, send msgs & check their account at different times of the day. & why is it being upgraded? As you've already guessed, Orange is readying its 3G network for the iPhone! But will they launch Hsdpa, like Emtel? We'll know it very soon... :)

Photo Credits Engadget & Apple.
Btw there’s a new Apple iPhone Software Gallery

Battle of the ultimates: iPhone 3G v/s Nokia N95 8GB!!!

Microsoft Surface on N95 - Here you are!

Avinash has also blogged about the iPhone - iPhone 3G will be available in Mauritius.
L'express article: L’entrée officielle de l’iPhone sur le marché local pour bientôt

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Anonymous said...

Oh oh! Now that's an interesting one. I used an iPhone for some 3 or 4 days. Ti top xD Mais pas autant. Li ti zis zoli dans poche. I couldn't use many options and the only things that could compensate for it was (in my opinion) the resolution and the rotating of the pics *grin* I already had an iPod so, using it for playing songs was kinda useless. Anyway, it broke down because of some internal failure... which I caused xD Now I'm using a Nokia N95 and I have to say, it's much better. At least, I don't have the problem of using my BIG fingers on a mini querty keyboard XD And I can use the TV-out cable as well =P Me votes for N95 *yay* Mais iPhone cT la classe T_T Can't we merge both? :(

Anonymous said...

Good news. The question being, is it really worth it?

We won't be able to fully use the features of the iPhone in Mauritius. The data rate charges are still quite expensive for the mobile networks. We don't have things as GPS. And what about the price? Is it affordable?

All these needs to be considered. It might be a flashy, hyped device, but is there a need for it yet?

carrotmadman6 said...

Well, for merging both... Nokia is working on it. The Tube (Nokia 5800) will be Nokia's first S60 Touch device, but it will only be an entry-level phone. The Nseries version will be the real iPhone-killer! xD
As for rotation, you can already do that on the N95 with RotateMe! :D

As a primary device, the iPhone sucks. But if you want a portable multimedia player, iPhone rocks! :D
Data rate charges is a big ?
Will Orange sell it subsidized under contracts? If no, the unsubsidized price is Rs 20k+ for both models, making it an unaffordable product! :(

GPS is a standard now for all phones. :P Except there are no Mauritius maps! :( (For Nokia Maps, there's only Africa maps)

Unknown said...

meh, it's in apple habit to lock down everything they make. Just the name, 'jailbreak', gives you a hint.

any problem you have, you will be *forced* to go through apple (or one of its approved partners, in this case, the loathed Orange...)

and completely unrelated: firefox 3 is out

carrotmadman6 said...

Actually, jailbreak has been inspired from Prison Break! LOL :P

As for Firefox 3, mozilla site still down for me...
Had to use the direct download link.

Anonymous said...

here in the uk when the iphone first came in the country it was a big fuzz,it was sold out on the first week,but wait....

nokia sorted the nokia n95 and n95 8gb.

people are not fool,they know that the touchpad of iphone is useful for web browsing. but they all went for n95 and its worth it.
the iphoned was a fiasco here.
in mauritius,it will be hanging in a cupboard coz nobody will want a huge bill evry month for internet.

carrotmadman6 said...

That's true - the main strength of the iPhone is its connectivity apps. But without a proper 3G data plan... very few will use it. :)

Anonymous said...

@ zahid, i think you don't know what you are talking about... nokia n95 is what i call fiasko... iPhone is way better than the N95 because its way more slimmer, touchpad, better for listening to musics, watch videos, browse the internet, way much faster than the N95, have a great app and music store, and much more... lol time to grow up man, nokia is no more the greatest of the mobile comunity depite its still the 1st in its class

I am telling you this base on what I have (Nokia N95)... really I really tired of nokia's mobile phones and all its new release crap... i started as a nokia fan and ended up as a nokia hater... iPhone FTW!!!!!!!!!

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