Saturday, July 12, 2008

iPhone - one day in

I'm just letting the kids have a go on a free app from the AppStore named Cube Runner where you steer a little spaceship using the iPhone's built in accelerometer. This little break seemed like a good time to right a quick blog post.

Here's an unstructured list of things that spring to mind.

Shiny. Shiny. Shiny.

The 3G coverage seems fine around Eastleigh. I used it at Boyatt Wood shops whilst waiting for our pets to see the vet (they're fine, the rabbit didn't seem to mind being jabbed with a needle).

Web browsing speed over wireless and 3G is perfectly acceptable but a real computer is still much nicer to use. I logged in to the Hampshire Online Library, used HotUkDeals, checked - so far everything going well.

I've set up Yahoo and Google mail and they're both fine.

I installed the free Shazam application - I hadn't come across this before and I'm very impressed. It collects 10 seconds of music using the iPhone's microphone and sends it to Shazam who tell you within a second or two what song it is. It's worked perfectly so far listening to music played through my Thinkpad's speakers and a radio station being listened to on the TV. Neat.

O2 have started charging me from the 9 July - the device didn't arrive until Friday 11th. So that's £2.00 I might consider asking for back.

The Google maps application is neat but definitely not a Sat Nav app. It doesn't track where you go, it just asks the phone where you are "now" when it is relevant. Like the online version you can get a route planned and drawn on the maps and it generates a list of turn by turn text directions if you have someone in the car to help navigate. But if you deviate it won't know. But you can always replan a new route from whereever you are "now".

The location awareness feature is cool. I installed the WeatherBug app (which is buggy, not yet recommended) and I started to add a new location, thinking that I'd be telling it my post code or town. But instead I just clicked on "Current location" and it said that Southampton was the nearest point it new about. Cool. But then it crashed - I'd guess that it hasn't been tested using UK locations.

The auto-capitalization and correction functionality was a real pain when I was trying to enter my email address in some web forms. It kept changing russell_finn to Russell_Finn which some systems will tolerate (Google) but others won't. It also kept changing .uk to .I'm Because this was a web form and not an iPhone app the data entry mechanism wasn't the specialized email address entry sort but was the vanilla one - I've now turned off the smarts but now I'm missing them. A way to switch between them more easily would be good - it's buried in the Settings section.

The Safari browser works so well that rather than complaining about basic functionality I'm wishing that it had more features like Firefox like addons for, Secure Login etc.

I guess there's a Password Safe type app, and hopefully it's free, as I need to put passwords somewhere (not my IBM internal ones, just websites etc).

iTunes has some neat features but the basic spreadsheet approach to displaying songs causes performance problems, even on my quite powerful laptop. I can live with it.

I've switched networks from Vodafone to O2, and I didn't move numbers (to let another family member have the Sony Ericsson k750i) so I need to tell people the new number. But probably not on this blog :)

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