Lord of the Gizmos

Can I tell you how many times I’ve been asked: Are you getting an iPhone? No, I cannot, for I cannot count that high unassisted by spreadsheet.

People, of course I am getting an iPhone … but maybe not for the reasons you suspect.

I’ve needed a new phone since January. My trusty, bulky Sony Ericsson S710a was simply not cutting it any longer. I was prepared for a new phone but then heard that the iPhone was coming. Months in the future of course, but on the horizon. So I waited. Waited for the details to trickle in.

Not everything impressed. When I found out it would be on my current carrier Cingular I was happy. Then I remembered it was Cingular and I was sad. Because Cingular sucks, but they have good international coverage, which is the only reason I am with them. Then I learned that the iPhone would not support Cingular’s nascent 3G network. And I was really sad. This will most certainly suck.

But the real reason I am going to get one is that I am coming around to convergence — when done right. Everything I have seen suggests that this device can synthesize a phone and an iPod perfectly. True, it will not be the 80GB version I haul around, but it has caused me to rethink my iPod strategy. I carry an 80GB mostly because of long-distance travel, not for my commute. Who the hell listens to 80GB of music in a typical session on the iPod? No one. But the large capacity is ideal for when you are away from your main music library for a time and want choice.

The iPhone has me rethinking. The only other device I always have on me is my laptop and, while it does not have enough free space to house my entire collection, there are multiple options for expansion including swapping the CD drive (which I rarely use) for a second hard drive or using a tiny external drive. I might just do this. Unload the 80GB and use the iPhone exclusively for listening on the go.

The other reason the iPhone makes sense to me is coincidental. I have been moving all my critical data to web services in the last year. E-mail, bookmarks, to do lists, calendar, project plans, backups, everything is now accessible via a web interface. And this, despite the protestations of OSX developers everywhere, is the only way Apple is currently allowing developer access to the platform — through web apps. I still love offline, cross-platform access to data, but this will do for a mobile device.

So what’s my plan on Friday? Well, there is an AT&T/Cingular store right across the street from my office. As soon as I see a line form, I’m out there.

3 Responses to “Lord of the Gizmos”

  1. 2B's says :

    I’m not buying it — your rationalization that is. I think you just want the gizmo factor. Please let us know how long you are in the line on Friday!

  2. Ian Smith says :

    John, I’d be really interested to see the list of web apps you use for all those things.
    As for iPhones, I am saved only by their non-availability in the UK. My current phone is a study in old age – I’ve never ever held onto one for so long before.
    I’ll be watching this space!

  3. donturn says :

    I’ll be waiting for a review. I’m loathe to move to ATT for my phone but if there’s anything that could get to move, this would be it. The virtual keyboard may be the love/hate pivot on this though.