Advantages Excellent product
Disadvantages Sometimes my fingers just aren't small enough
|Look & Feel|
|Durability & Robustness|
|Battery standby time|
|Value for money|
|Range of features|
Years ago, when mobile phones first came out, the general consensus amongst most people was along the lines of ‘what could possibly be so important that you’d want to walk around town talking on the phone’ and of course they were the size of house bricks so anyone with one couldn’t help but look like a complete idiot.When smart phones first came out I was pretty much of the same opinion, who would want to sit in the pub browsing the internet – just plain rude, why would you want to pay so much when all you need to do with a phone is text and call.
So I was never going to have an iPhone – so when my phone contract came up for renewal, what did I get – yep, an iphone 3GsFirst things first, this will not be a technical review – I have no idea what the ‘G’ or the ‘S’stands for, but in that respect maybe I am an average consumer.
So how much did it cost?I don’t think a review is complete without considering the cost implication but being a mobile phone with so many different buying options this can be difficult – I have a contract with O2 the cost of the phone was in the region of £80, with a substantial Quidco payment and £35 per month on a 24 month contract which I use easily.
What’s in the box?The box as with any apple product the box is elegant and well made with nice curved edges, it included the phone, the lead to attach to the computer, the instruction manual, a separate lead to charge it with, which I was pleased about as we didn’t have that with the ipods that we’d bought in the past. We also had a Sim card I don’t remember whether that came separately or not.
I hope you will forgive me but I will not go through all the usual technical specifications of the iphone, partly because I don’t understand a lot of them, and if you are considering buying one I’m sure you’ve already read the technical spec. I will however try and give some insight on how I have found it to use, bearing in mind I’m a plug it in and see what happens kind of girl.Getting started
Before you can use the phone properly you need to charge it, which is very quick to do and even with excessive use it retains its charge for a while. So if my kids have been playing games on it, or I have been reading it needs charging about once a day. I did have one small issue in that it doesn’t charge in the BOSE ipod docking centre that my husband had bought me for my ipod classic, it does however play in it, I trust this doesn’t do it any harm, if anyone knows otherwise please let me know!Listening to music is a pleasant experience on the iphone, you can either use headphones, which I don’t like very much or you can listen through it’s own speakers which are a bit quiet and tinny in sound but will do, or through a docking station which has an excellent sound quality.
You also need to link the phone to i-tunes so you can download aps and music onto it, which is done very easily by linking it to the computer and as ours is a Mac, it pretty much does it for you, it then also syncs back to your computer next time you plug it in, which I assume means it can all be moved onto a new devise if I upgrade in the future.It comes pre-loaded with a few aps, like stock exchange, weather etc.
Using it!Making and receiving calls is easy, I have read various reviews that have had issues with the touch screen not responding quick enough to answer calls, this is not a problem I’ve had so it’s been great.
Texting is also equally easy, although it has an auto spell thingy which comes up with some weird alternatives and if you haven’t noticed they could get you into trouble, for example one of my students mum is called Keely – the iphone corrects this to Jerky. I have forewarned not to take offence if I miss one. The keyboard is on the touch screen and is a version of a standard Querty keyboard, anyone with adult sized fingers will miss letters but it doesn’t take long to get used to it, and most of the time it corrects it properly it also learns your habits, mine can now spell Rachmaninov, Mozart, and Prokofiev without any trouble at all.Using the internet
Surfing the internet is fairly easy, especially if you have a wi-fi to link into, then it tends to be quite quick, you can also connect using the ‘G’ bit (I think, I’m in danger of getting techy here) and is usually very reliable.The ease of which you can use the net does become habit, so I was very concerned when I planned to take the phone to America as I’d heard horror stories of massive bills while your phone happily connects to the internet checking for emails etc. You can switch off all of the wandering options to stop this from happening but as it was we had no problem, as nothing worked over there at all unless there was wi-fi.
Using different websites on the phone can be a varied experience – big companies like Ebay, Next and Debenhams have their own aps designed specifically for smartphones so they are really good, some smaller companies are not very easy to use on a phone. The best example is maybe a comparison between Ciao and Dooyoo. Ciao has clearly thought about it, and do have a mobile:desktop option at the top of the page when it opens up. If you chose mobile you can simply read reviews, which is useful if you are out shopping and want an opinion, if you chose desktop you can login and read and rate as normal, however if you are trying to read a review the screen is only very small at 3.5” so you are constantly moving the review around to read it, or you can just fit it in width wise if you have x-ray vision. The phone is also unbelievably annoying when it comes to rating a review, as you tap ‘very helpful’ and rather than rating it straight away it tells me what ‘very helpful’ means (I think it was about 2002 I first joined so it’s about time I knew) so I then get frustrated with it and double tap it which just makes it bigger. It often takes several times to be able to rate the review, and then because of my big adult fingers I have very nearly rated ‘helpful’ instead (if you feel you may have been victim to this please let me know)Dooyoo doesn’t have a mobile option and some of the text at the top does not sit quite correctly but nothing that causes any problems. However because it has a smaller review area it is much easier to read the reviews themselves, I’m sure this isn’t a conscious decision and is a happy coincidence. The site however does work well on the phone, with none of the rating issues mentioned above.
There are many many websites out there that use Flash, as this is an apple product – these sites are almost unusable on an iphone.The iphone can also be very damaging to your wallet if you set up the ebay ap, it is so easy to sit there browsing whilst waiting for kids to come out of school, Amazon have a 1 click option (which I’ve turned off as again my kids use it) so it doesn’t even go into a shopping basket, it just comes straight out of your bank account. Great, but doesn’t give much or any chance to mull your purchase over.
The cameraAll phones these days come with a camera and I’ve actually been quite pleased with this one, apparently its 1600x1200 mp I find it is useful to take pictures with if I am out, they are easy to view and to email and up load onto sites like facebook and the quality is ok, but if I want to take anything that matters I will of course use a proper camera.
My book aps I would not be without, they are easy to read, they are backlit and you can read in the middle of the night without waking the household up.The phone also has a satellite tracking system, which has a multitude of used – it knows where you are so it can recommend a local cinema with which films you may wish to watch, it can tell you if you are stuck in a traffic jam although it would be far nicer if it warned you before you get stuck in the traffic jam. However the bit I use more than any other is a natty little ap caller ‘runkeeper’ so it tracks exactly where I have walked to, how many km per hour I have maintained (that’s often quite embarrassingly low) and how many calories I’ve used up. The only issue I have with that particular ap is when you first switch it on it always assumes you’re going to run and honestly that is just not going to happen. The signal thing can be a bit of an issue here though as many Cotswold walks take me down into the valley so no signal, so massive gap in the data.
The lookI love the look of the iphone 3g it’s sleek and curvy as opposed to the square bulky look of the iphone 4. I also like the fact that unlike many mobile phones it has a button on the side to switch it onto silent.
All in all I am very happy with my i-phone, I enjoy playing silly mindless games on it, I like checking facebook, ciao and dooyoo on it, I like the fact that it beeps at me when I have a new email, it does everything I could want from a phone. I do apologise to my friends and family if I have become a little too attached to it but I would certainly recommend it to anyone.
Thank you for reading.
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