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I've had my iPhone 3GS 16GB for about six months now. I know plenty of reviews have been written about the phone and some would say there's nothing left to say, but I am going to share my experiences with you and tell you all the things I wish I'd known before I made my purchase.
I didn't intend to buy an iPhone, but when my phone contract came up for renewal I realised that the age of cheap phone contracts has come and gone. I was being quoted about £20 for a SIM only package which I thought was pretty steep. So I started to have a look at the new models on offer, I knew the iPhone was the ' buzz phone of the moment but I also thought it would be rather expensive. However after a thirty minute chat with an 02 sales girl I was sold... My 18 month contract would cost me an eye watering £47.50 each month and for that I got the following:
A 3GS 16GB refurbished iPhone (this meant that the phone had been returned by somebody else but it was still as good as new);
600 minutes - any time, any network;
Fully comprehensive insurance.
When the phone arrived it seemed pretty basic. I didn't really see what it offered the user that other mobile phones didn't. It had all the usual functions - messages, a contacts book, a camera and a calendar. However the camera in particular was below par - it doesn't have a zoom feature, there's isn't a flash and it's only two mega pixel - much less than other phones that are available, although I did find that I could get a half decent shot in a well lit room. I knew I had a two week cool off period with the phone and after day five I was convinced I'd be sending the phone back. However something happened... all of a sudden I fell in love with my new toy!
One great aspect of the iPhone is that it links up to iTunes so I was able to transfer all my music on there. I also found that by downloading radio station apps I could listen to live radio shows on the go. I also loved the fact that the calendar was so comprehensive - I organise my life with that diary app and my paper diary soon became defunct! I really liked the text message format - your messages are set out as a conversation - so you can recap on the last message somebody sent you before replying. The internet is also good - it's much clearer and faster than typical mobile phone internet. I also found that I could zoom in on pages and minimize them while I open others. The YouTube app (which comes already installed on the phone) also allows you to watch videos quickly and clearly.
There are lots of apps available for download in the iTune applications store and many of them are free. My favourites are Facebook, Twitter and RBS. With Facebook and Twitter I can communicate with friends on the go and with the RBS application I can even check my bank balance. There are loads of games too - I recommend Angry Birds, Line Up and the Barclaycard waterslide game.
The only real problem I've had since I bought the phone happened when I tried to update the software via the Apple website. My phone wouldn't update and in the end I had do wipe my phone and restore factory settings. This wasn't a big problem though because it only deleted my applications and all my messages and contacts were still there.
The battery life on the iPhone is notoriously bad. I have to charge mine every night and I also make sure that I have a charger on hand at work so that I don't get caught out with a dead phone. However a message does come up when you only have 20% of your battery left and you can also download a battery app which allows you to check your battery life at any time... there really is an app for everything!
Overall I am really happy with my iPhone and I am constantly on it. The main gripes I have revolve around the poor battery life and the poor camera. However this phone does just about everything and I wouldn't be without it.
If you're looking to invest in an iPhone then I recommend that you take out an 18 month contract (they work out cheaper in the long run). I also think that you should consider a refurbished model because they are cheaper than brand new iPhones and I've certainly had no problems with mine. Also, on 02 the insurance is £2.50 per month cheaper on refurbished models. I'd say that insurance is an essential extra if you're thinking of purchasing an iPhone because things do go wrong with them and yours breaks or it's stolen, then you won't be covered without insurance.
I don't have any regrets about purchasing my iPhone 3GS 16GB, I pay £47.50 a month for it, but in my eyes it's worth every penny. However I am going to knock one star off because of the poor battery life and camera.