After a week of using the iPhone, I remain captivated, but less so. As I gain more experience with the elegantly designed jewel, I am more impressed but also begin to see some shortcomings. My primary and secondary email accounts work fine with the iPhone but it requires having two mailboxes instead of consolidating into one like other email clients. When deleting things in a list — such as old emails — you have to do it one at a time. When scrolling through the contact list you can’t key bsm and get Bill Smith. You have to scroll through all the s’s. Synchronizing photos with Adobe Photoshop Elements and grabbing new photos from the iPhone are both mysteries to me at this point. I know they can be done and am confident I will figure it out but these things are not as intuitive as the rest of the iPhone. As for shortcomings generally, I am confident that there will be updates via iTunes that will render the iPhone better and better over the months ahead. Remember, iTunes is on release 7.3. Continuous improvement seems to be a mantra for all things iApple.
The most significant shortcoming of the iPhone is definitely AT&T. My greatest fear came true when I got back to Connecticut after having taken initial delivery of the iPhone in Pennsylvania. There is no usable AT&T signal at my house. If I get in the car and drive a short distance things are fine. It also worked well in Stamford, CT and Washington, DC where I had meetings this week. I am sure it will work fine in all major cities. I do have a landline but at times it is nice to be able to make and receive mobile calls at home. I am no fan of Verizon but they do have better coverage in many areas. Also, when connected to the AT&T network the performance is not good. AT&T claims to be adding towers and fine tuning their network. I hope so.
The good news is the WiFi feature of the iPhone. Whether it is my home wireless or one at a hotel or airport, the iPhone connects very smoothly and remembers how to connect automatically the next time. The use of email, weather and stock updates and of course the web are all automatically handled by WiFi if it is available. JiWire is now listing 150,958 free and paid WiFi hotspots in 136 countries. Stay tuned for an update on other developments in WiFi.