With the hype surrounding the iPhone it seems that everyone wants it to do
everything. Before I start my list of iPhone 2.0 "wants" I thought it
would be prudent to mention that never before have I seen a smartphone so
beautiful, easy to use and powerful. The iPhone does the 4 things I need
very, very well: phone, e-mail, web browsing and SMS. In my opinion the
iPhone does these 4 things better than any other device on the market by a very
large margin. After playing with the device for well over a week I have a
list of features I would like to see outside of the normal ringtones and more
YouTube videos and removable battery complaints. Maybe I can do some of
these things today and I would ask the community to help enhance this list and
help figure out how to do some of these items:
1 - Better IMAP subscriptions. I already use IMAP as my primary
method for e-mail. It's beautiful being able to grab a new device and
have all of my mail download in a couple of minutes with full folder structure
and messages. I have a couple of folders that I use primarily offline
such as archives and shared mailboxes (yes these show up too unlike the
Blackberry, Palm and Windows Mobile devices) that I simply don't need on the
iPhone. While it's no big deal to ignore these folders it would be nice
if I could select which folders I would like to subscribe to like in every
other IMAP client I have used.
2 - Google Docs and Spreadsheets. Did you know that Google Docs
works on the iPhone? Well, it mostly works. You can open your
Google Docs account, you can view your list of docs and you can even ready
your documents that you created on your Mac or PC. If you want to start
a new doc or edit an existing document, well, you're out of luck. Google
Docs appears to only work in read only mode. I know I'm being picky
here, none of my other smartphones can even do that, but it would be nice to
take it to the next level. There may be a reason that I can't edit
documents and that is...
3 - No cut/copy/paste. Heck, no item selections. Even
Windows Mobile has this! I can't select a line of text to delete it.
I can't select a line of text to cut/copy/paste it. I simply can't
select a line of text! Makes it really hard to edit a text document when
you don't have simply cut/copy/paste features such as those found in the
original Macintosh built in 1984.
4 - IMAP Idle. I would love to know if the mail client supports
IMAP Idle. It seems that I'm getting mail on my iPhone before I get it
in my mail account. I know my server supports the idle command, but what
about the iPhone? It could also be the luck of the draw when it comes to
5 - Custom SMS Tones. I have always wanted this feature in a smartphone
and to date I have never figured out how to do it on any platform... I
would like t have different alert sounds for SMS. Just as I can have
different ringtones for callers, so too would I like to be able to set up
different SMS alert tones based on who is sending the message. In my
scenario I monitor a series of servers with an outside service that will SMS
my phone when something goes offline. An alarm tone would be nice for
those messages, a tweet tone would be nice for twitter messages and a bell
tone would be nice for most everything else.
6 - Unified communications. This one is less Apple and more
GrandCentral... I use a GrandCentral phone number to forward calls to
whatever phone I want. I was hoping that GrandCentral would have
implemented SMS forwarding before the iPhone launch so I could migrate
completely to that number. Alas they have yet to announce anything along
the lines of SMS. My real gripe is that I can not manage my GrandCentral
from my iPhone. For reasons I don't understand at all GrandCentral
requires the use of Adobe Flash to log in. What they are doing that
requires flash is beyond me, but the iPhone does not support flash and
GrandCentral requires it. One of the two needs to get this fixed.
Of course it would be nice if Apple would support flash but they seem to
have gone out of their way to not support it, so I won't hold my breath.
7 - Video on the camera. The still camera is beautiful. Not
as good as a Nokia N95, but close enough for most users. I find it odd
that I can watch YouTube content on my iPhone but I can't create any. I
would love to see Apple create a video camera application to allow me to
record a video, do basic editing (iMovie on my iPhone) and send that to
YouTube or e-mail it off to services like Blip or Revver over my not-so-fast
EDGE connection. I don't want to have to carry a video camera with me
everywhere and the iPhone is good enough at photos, now we just need video
8 - Interaction with AJAXy web pages
. The Google Maps app on the
iPhone is awesome. What if I want to look at a mashup? What if I
want to find a home on a site like
I can see the map, I can see the properties but there's no way for me to
zoom in including the standard google zoom bar. I'll say that these
sites get a lot further than any other mobile device out there. Most
smartphones just show the header and then die, the iPhone shows the whole
site. I just can't use it because I can't interact with the page.
Being that Apple would like to make AJAX the development platform for
the iPhone (yeah right) I think that they should make the Safari browser just
a bit better when it comes to being able to interact with web sites.
9 - Bluetooth VCards. I am flabbergasted that I can not send my
personal VCard to other phones let along other iPhones. If I find
another smartphone user or I'm in a social environment and I want to share my
details, why can't I just say 'share card'? This seems to be a huge
oversight on Apple's part and even dumb phones can do this. The iPhone
*has* Bluetooth, why not allow me to select my card from contacts and send to
other Bluetooth devices? I can only hope that they had to cut this
feature to get the phone to market because as it stands this one missing
feature is a huge disappointment.
10 - iTunes integration for all aspects of my new AT&T account.
Activating, for me at least, was super easy through iTunes. The
AT&T web site for account management isn't up to Apple's level of user
friendliness. I would love to be able to manage my account directly in
iTunes. Minutes used, minutes left, upgrade or downgrade my service
plan, paying my bill or anything having to do with my iPhone. It should
feel like one huge integrated service, right now it feels mostly integrated.
With these complains and requests would I go back to my Treo 700wx, Treo 700p
or Blackberry? Oh hell no. You'll have to pry my iPhone from my
hands! Never before have I seen the web, e-mail and SMS done so well on
any other phone. The list of features I would like to see on everyone
elses smartphones is so large it's not even worth posting. No device is
perfect, but I would say that the iPhone is the closest I have seen to date by
a very, very long shot. Apple has a few kinks to work out but I have no
doubt that in future iPhone software releases we'll see a lot of these items
ironed out. As for the above list, anyone have any ideas on how to make some
of that stuff work?