10 Things I Hate About the iPhone

The iPhone is not the perfect phone. It has its flaws too. Here are a few things that I think the iPhone can improve upon:

1. Recessed ear jack

The recessed earphone jack means that 99.99% of the earphones out there cannot be used plugged into the iPhone without an adaptor. The supplied earphone works well but lacks the punchy bass. This has been fixed on the iPhone 3G.

2. No Flash support on Safari

Flash content will not be rendered on iPhone’s Safari browser. You can still watch youtube videos using the iPhone’s built in youtube application. But what about all those cool flash games like Bloon tower defense?

3. Limited Bluetooth functionality

Got a nice photo that you want to send to your friends? Sorry but you can’t use your iPhone’s Bluetooth to do that. The Bluetooth connection is for Bluetooth headsets only. On the iPhone, you can either ON or OFF your Bluetooth. That’s it.

4. Prone to scratches

The iPhone’s aluminum body is not scratch resistant. Being a relatively soft metal, the aluminum back will scratch if you throw it around carelessly. Most people will have their iPhones covered up all the time which really defeats the purpose of buying an iPhone.

5. Sound quality is not excellent
You can’t do custom EQ curves.

Many have complained about the audio quality of the iPhone. Bass tend to break at higher volumes and the equalizer isn’t customizable. If you are an audiophile, the iPhone will disappoint you. But if you are like me who don’t blast my music, the iPhone will satisfy you.

6. Sub par camera
Too easy to use. One button only.

Photo taken by the iPhone. No post processing, just resizing and adding my site URL.

The 2.0 megapixel camera on the iPhone isn’t excellent. It takes decent photos but not great. No autofocus, no flash, no zoom, no settings at all. Just one button to take a picture. This is pretty bad considering phones nowadays pack 5 megapixel cameras complete with autofocus and xenon flash.

7. No video recording
Did I mention that you can’t record videos on the iPhone? That’s right, you won’t find any sex tapes made using an iPhone.

8. No copy and paste
This is by far the most important feature that is lacking on the iPhone. Sometimes I want to copy some text from my SMS and paste it on to Notes but I can’t because there’s no way of selecting and copying text. Want to delete a bunch of text? Backspace is the only option. You can’t select all and delete.

9. Screen smudges easily

After 10 minutes of use, you’ll have a screen full of fingerprints. Wiping only makes it clean until the next use. I’ve tried but I’ve come to realize that you can never get rid of fingerprints on the iPhone. You’ll have to live with it.

10. SMS limitations
Want to send a poison pen SMS to 10 of your friends. You’ll be dead before you finish. The iPhone does not allow SMSes to be sent to multiple persons. Heck, I can’t even forward my SMSes. I have to retype if I want to forward. And I cannot insert contacts to my SMS. If I need to SMS a number to a friend, I need to remember that number and type it out myself.

There, the 10 things that I hate MOST about my iPhone. There are also other problems like its unremovable battery, poor external speaker, and lack of MMS which some people might find annoying. I couldn’t care less.

If the above issues can be fixed, the iPhone will be the perfect phone for me. Even if they’re not, I can live with it because to me, they’re not serious enough to make me dump my iPhone for another phone. Why? Check out the 10 things I love about my iPhone! Continue reading

10 Things I Love About the iPhone

I’ve had my iPhone for over a year now and here’s why I’m still using it.

1. Mail
Emails updated in the morning.

I think the most used application (besides phone and sms) on my iPhone is mail. In the morning if I’m in a rush I’ll just download all my unread emails with a touch of a button and read them on the go. I can also reply emails while I’m away from a connection and they’ll be sent when I’m reconnected. Mail also reads word and excel documents so attachments on the email can be read right on the iPhone itself.

2. iPod

I hate bringing multiple devices around. Now with the iPhone, I can leave my portable multimedia player at home. On a fully charged battery, it can give 24 hours of music playback. I have all my songs and movies from my iTunes library on my iPhone. I once watched the entire 4 seasons of the office in class during breaks.

3. Connectivity
Browsing the web with Safari.

My iPhone keeps me connected. It’s so simple. Everything just works. No complicated configurations or settings to deal with everyday. When I come home and get within the range of my wireless router, my iPhone automatically connects me. With a press of a button, I can be reading my emails even before I reach my computer in my room. I can be downstairs cooking and at the same time chatting with my friends.

Yesterday I woke up in the middle of the night so I reached over for my iPhone to check the time and went to a couple of sites and read some blogs before going back to sleep again. All in the comfort of my bed. My iPhone keeps me connected 24/7.

4. Speed and stability
1st page of Home screen. I keep my most frequently accessed programs here.

The home button keeps everything within 2 touches away. No annoying lags or long waiting times. Everything is fast and responsive. Keeping the iPhone turned on for days will not slow it down. In fact, I never have to turn off or restart my iPhone ever. The secret? The iPhone runs on a version of Linux FreeBSD. It’s so stable that if an application crashes, you can pretend that nothing happened and continue using your iPhone.

5. Keypad and Dictionary
The iPhone dictionary is amazingly accurate at predicting what you want to type.

I like to make notes every time I think of something because I tend to forget them later. The touch keyboard with its excellent dictionary function makes it very easy for me to do that. I can now type even faster on the iPhone than on a normal keyboard. In fact, this entire blog post was written during my lunch break! After using this, I can’t find myself going back to multitap. Maybe I’ll settle for a blackberry or a nokia communicator. Something with a full size keyboard.

6. Syncing and ease of use
Syncing with iTunes.

This point really cannot be overemphasized. If I have new songs in my iTunes library, I just need to plug my iPhone to my computer and it automatically syncs with it. If I want to put in new photos, I just need to plug my iPhone to my computer and it automatically copies the new photos over and organizes them according to their folder name. Movies? No problem. Just sync and watch.

Things you can do with photos. Flickr upload not shown here.

The iPhone is designed for those who just want to get things done. I can for example take a photo with the built in camera and send it to my flickr account instantly. Or I can send that photo through email with the touch of a button. It’s so easy.

That’s a jet engine turbine by the way.

7. iTunes
iTunes Top 10 as of Nov 25th.

The iTunes music store, although not available in Malaysia yet, is a good place to go to sample new music. Every song on the iTunes music store has a 30 second preview. So you can listen to the top songs on the iTunes store and discover new music. A good place to be when you are bored of your current songs.

8. Apps and flexibility
Towers of Hanoi. Can you beat my Towers of Hanoi robot?

With thousands of apps available for the iPhone, you can make it do anything you want. From downloading youtube videos to getting your guitar tuned, there’s an app for everyone. Forgot your inclinometer at home? No problem, your iPhone can help you determine how level a surface is. Bored? Try Spore or Super Monkey Ball and 1001 other games available for the iPhone. You can even turn your iPhone into a web server (mine is)!

9. Multitouch
Multitouch is indispensable for web and photo browsing. I can go through a webpage quickly and easily by using my fingers to scroll and zoom onto content that I want to read. I can’t tell you how nice it is not to have to use scroll bars or buttons.

Browsing through tons of photos easily.

Photo browsing is effortless and I can find photos easily as they are organized properly. I can browse photos with the flick of the finger and zoom in easily with the two finger gesture. Photos load instantly so you can now show your friends the 1000 photos you took during your vacation in one teh tarik session.

10. Large touch screen

Large high resolution screen. Picture from my old iPhone post.

The screen is made of glass. Once you turn it on you’ll see the gorgeous 3.5″ display. Incredibly bright, it can be seen clearly even under the afternoon sun. I usually have the brightness set to half to prevent burning my retinas out. With 320×480 resolution, everything looks great on it, especially movies and photos. The capacitive touch screen is really responsive and a joy to use. Unlike resistive touch screens, no pressure on the screen is required, just a light touch.

Clear under bright sun light. Picture from my Hong Kong Trip post.

There, 10 things that I love MOST about the iPhone. There are many other aspects of the phone that I like but the above concerns me the most.

Think I’m a die hard Apple fanboy? Think again. Go take a look at the 10 things I hate about the iPhone. Continue reading

DIY Studio Lighting

I promised to show the lighting setup for my Nikon D40 shoot after I cleaned up my room so here it is:

DIY “studio lighting”.

It’s a very simple setup. Let’s start from the top. I had a SB600 in wireless mode and at approximately 1/64 power. A cardboard is used to shield the light away from the surrounding areas of the room so the room will remain dark and not lighted up by the flash.

Separating the flash and the D40 is a piece of semi transparent tracing paper suspended in mid-air with transparent tape. You can buy this from any stationary shop. This piece of paper helps diffuse the light nicely so it won’t look too harsh on the subject. Below that, I held the D40 on a tripod which allowed me to angle and move it around under the diffused light.

Here’s how it looks like with the lights on. Actually I didn’t really clean up my desk.

On my D80, I set my flash to commander mode so it will fire the SB600 that’s positioned above the D40. During shooting, I turned off the lights in the room. I set the shutter speed to 1/200 (max flash sync speed) and aperture to f/11 to isolate the remaining ambient light. I use a combination of the Nikon 50mm f/1.8 and the Nikon 18-55mm kit lens.

So there you have it. A simple DIY studio lighting that will throw soft light onto any object that you want. Just make sure you set your flash power low and don’t hesitate to experiment. Play with your flash power, shutter speed and aperture. Happy shooting! Continue reading

What if The Matrix Ran Windows

Which brings up an even more interesting question. What actually does the Matrix run on?

But if you want, you can run The Matrix on Windows.

I also updated my Kellie’s Castle in Film and Tin Dredger in Film posts because I have in my hands a scanner that scans film which belonged to virtualmystic. The only problem with film is keeping dust and lint off the negatives. Continue reading