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Apple i Phone 3GS 8GB

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06.04.2011

Advantages:
Everything !

Disadvantages:
poor battery life when using apps, the initial cost of the phone

Recommendable Yes:

Detailed rating:

Look & Feel

Durability & Robustness

Battery standby time

Value for money

Range of features

Battery talktimeGood

Camera Quality

18 Ciao members have rated this review on average: very helpful See ratings
exceptional by (26%):
  1. lucmovic
  2. pumfster
  3. bbicuk01
and 2 other members
very helpful by (74%):
  1. KathEv
  2. TheHairyGodmother
  3. linzee_loulabelle
and 11 other members

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I wanted an I Phone for ages, and I was lucky enough to receive one as a gift from my partner. I have owned my I Phone since last May now and I absolutely love it. When I first received it, it looked a bit too complicated for me and I did wonder if I would get maximum usage out of it. However, after the first couple of weeks it became obvious that I was going to love it and I have been hooked on it ever since.

Obviously there are different versions of the I Phone, but I have the 3GS 8G. This isn’t the latest version of the phone now the I Phone 4 has come out, but I feel no need whatsoever to upgrade or change my phone as my 3GS does everything I need it too.

The I Phone is really sleek and stylish in design. The general dimensions of the phone are 4.5” x 2.5” with it being about ¼ “ thick. I really like the size of the phone as it is not too small that you lose it in your handbag, yet it is not too big that it become a chore to carry around. This fits perfectly into my jeans pockets so it is perfectly sized in my opinion. It is lightweight, yet substantial so doesn’t feel flimsy or cheap in the slightest.

The surround of my phone is predominantly black with the screen itself being around 3.5” x 2”. Looks wise, the phone is quite simple with only the small round button underneath the screen and just the volume buttons, lock button, charger and headphone slots and sim card slots being located around the side edges of the phone.

The one thing that really scared me about the phone when I first got it was the initial set up. You have to download and connect the phone to I Tunes, which may sound simple to some, but I personally am not great with technology and I struggled with this a bit. However, once this bit is done, you are ready to go.

You insert your sim card at the top of the phone via a simple little metal pin that comes in the box. This is the only way to get the sim card drawer out and can be a bit fiddly. The drawer is supposed to just pop out when you stick the pin in the hole at the side of the drawer, but mine has never done that. It has always opened for me, just not that easily.

Once on, you push the black button underneath the screen and swipe your finger from left to right across the unlock arrow to open, though the instruction is there on the screen for you to see. This reveals the main menu and the already installed icons for you.

On this screen you will see the phone, mail, safari and app store icons at the bottom with messages, contacts, settings, clock, calculator, calendar, maps, notes, ipod, itunes, camera and photos icons above, amongst others. Most of these are self explanatory as to what they do. When adding contacts, you can add as little or as much information as you wish with multiple phone numbers and email addresses. To open your contact list you simply press the contacts icon and the list of all contacts will appear. Simply scroll down the list with your finger until you find the one you wish. Mine are located by surname, though it may be possible to change this if you wish.

The messaging bit was the bit I found the hardest when using the actual phone. When in the message icon, there is a little pen/paper icon in the top right hand corner which is what you press when typing a new message. You enter the recipient first and you can do this by entering the phone number if you know it, or by searching your contact list. You can add multiple recipients too. You type using the Qwerty keyboard at the bottom of the screen. You can change the keyboard to numerical via the 123 button on the keyboard. This can be a little fiddly. I have ridiculously small fingers, and even now after nearly a year of ownership, I still find I press the wrong key by accident or brush over two keys at the same time, so if you have larger fingers, you may struggle with the small qwerty keyboard when typing a message.

My favourite thing has to be the app store and I spend hours looking at new apps to purchase. The apps are categorized to make it easier to find the app you want. Some categories include games, music, lifestyle, travel, sports, navigation, news, photography, finance, health and fitness, entertainment and utilities, amongst others. If you don’t wish to search via the categories, you can search through the top 25 free or paid apps to see what is the most popular at the moment. There is also a ‘featured’ bit to the store which tells you the latest apps and what’s hot at present. I have the I Phone with possibly the lowest memory at 8g, but I have loads of apps and there is still plenty of room left for more.

There are hundreds of paid and free apps. I personally have a mixture of both. I started off refusing to pay for apps and just getting some games etc on free apps, but you do find you are a little limited with just purchasing free apps. For example, a lot of the games on free apps are just trial versions of the game and not the full game itself which is a little frustrating. Quite a few of the shopping apps are free such as ebay, amazon, next, Tescos and some sports and lifestyle ones have come in handy too such as sky sports, national lottery and sky news. When it comes to games though, I tend to pay for the apps now. Many of the decent games can be brought for just 59p which is quite good value for money. Some more popular games though can be as much as £5.99. When you want to purchase an app, you click on the app and install it. You will be asked for your password which will then charge the app to whichever card you set I tunes up with. You receive a receipt for this charge a few days later via email.

I now have around 60 different apps on my phone ranging through all the categories and my phone keeps me amused for hours. I would recommend getting a phone case or cover for the phone if you purchase one. My phones do have a habit of getting dropped on a regular basis, and although my I phone has remained intact the couple of times it has been dropped, it is a lot more sturdy now I have a clear rubber case covering the back and sides and it was only £4.99 from a petrol station so is well worth it. Ebay do a number of cases too for good money as I brought a faux leather one to begin with but didn’t get on well with it. It was only £1.99 though so again, was good value if you get on with it.

You can connect your home email address up via the mail icon too so you can pick up your emails away from the home. Obviously you can connect your phone up via wifi when at home, but you do need internet access via your service provider to be able to use many of the apps when out and about or else you will never get the most out of your phone.

Obviously the main bugbear with an I Phone is the price. Even the lower end ones like mine still fetch over £150.00 on sites such as Ebay. You can obviously get one through your phone contract if you have a decent contract, but sometimes you may have to put some money to it if you have a lower end contract. If you can foot the initial fee for the phone though, it is well worth the money.

Most of my phones before the I phone had been quite standard and most of them Nokias. This is way beyond anything I have ever tried before but I love it. I have an I phone dock too so I can use it as an I Pod when doing the housework with the music downloaded via I tunes.

I haven’t mentioned much about the technical spec of the phone, but that’s because I don’t know much on that score. This is a review of my usage of the phone and nothing more. Should you wish to have more technical information on it, I suggest you go to the Apple website and it will tell you everything you need to know.

Apart from the price, the only other real problem is the battery life. When used just as a phone, the battery can last a good 3-4 days easily. This is certainly not the case though when the apps are used. I can get through a full battery in less than a day when the phone is used regularly so I would recommend purchasing a car charger from ebay too. I got mine for £1.79 and it means I won’t get caught short with no battery and needing to phone someone when out and about. The mains charger doubles up as a USB lead, this is how you connect the phone to your computer.

Overall, I absolutely love my phone and it has become a bit of a lifeline really. The quality of the phone is unmatched in my opinion. The sound and picture quality are fantastic and there is a huge array of apps available to suit all needs. I have downloaded some games for my son so this keeps him quiet on car journeys. My partner has the sports apps and I have the shopping and fitness apps so we are all kept happy. I would definitely recommend the Angry Birds App for children (and me!), as it is a quite hilarious game that will have you hooked!

As for the phone itself, it does everything. I wish Apple wouldn’t keep updating their products as I don’t think there is anything wrong with this one. It does everything you need it too and a lot more. I couldn’t possibly explain the extent of the apps available, but you will be shocked when scouring the app store. You can do everything on this phone and it is basically my lifeline now. My phone is also my diary, keeps the kids amused, gives me new recipes to cook and helps me shop amongst other things. It looks good, does everything I need and has proven thus far to be highly reliable.

The I phone is the best phone on the market in my opinion and comes with the highest recommendation from me.
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Comments about this review »

pumfster 06.04.2011 11:46

Superb review. E from me.

bbicuk01 06.04.2011 11:04

Very Informative Review

Drewster-Rooster 06.04.2011 10:33

I've had an iPhone for about 2 weeks now and wouldnt be without it now! - fantastic phone and you'e right about Angry Birds too - so addictive. Great review, gets an E from me :O)

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Product Information »

Manufacturer's product description

The first thing you'll notice about iPhone 3GS is how quickly you can launch applications. Web pages render in a fr...

Phone features

Sensors Accelerometer, ambient light sensor, proximity sensor, digital compass
Polyphonic Ringer Yes
Phone Functions Speakerphone, voice control, call timer, conference call, voice dialing

Media player

Supported Digital Video Standards MPEG-4, H.264
Supported Digital Audio Standards WAV, AAC, AIFF, Audible, MP3, Apple Lossless

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Review Ratings »

This review of Apple iPhone 3GS 8GB has been rated:

"exceptional" by (26%):

  1. lucmovic
  2. pumfster
  3. bbicuk01

and 2 other members

The overall rating of a review is different from a simple average of all individual ratings.

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