Monday, September 22, 2008

Apple iPhone 3G vs. Original - Physical Attributes and Speed

This is the continuation of my review regarding the evolution of the Apple iPhone. My last post focused on the purchase and activation process, this one will focus on physical aspects and speed of the iPhone.

Apple did a great job at updating the industrial design of the iPhone. The 3G model looks even more appealing, stylish and sexy than the original one. The most noticeable physical change is the switch from metal to a plastic for the back cover of the device. This change in material enabled Apple to create a curved design that, coupled with the feel of the plastic, provides the user with much better grip. Another benefit of the new casing material is that it feels warmer and softer in the hand, and the phone is considerably lighter.

Other notable physical design updates that have positively impacted my overall experience with the iPhone include fixing
the headphone jack that previously had a recessed design, rendering the phone incompatible with most headphones; and widening the top surface of the phone, making the virtual keyboard easier to use.

The final aspect of the phone that I will address today is speed. Much of the marketing for the iPhone has focused on speed. This makes sense considering that this is one of the most disappointing attributes of the original model. The new iPhone is definitely several times faster when running on a 3G network. Unfortunately, AT&T does not have 3G networks widely available and therefore the phone is often forced to connect via the much slower EDGE network. The one drawback of using 3G is that it eats up battery life extremelly fast.

In regards to speed it is important to point out that
event when running on a 3G network the iPhone is slower than comparable handsets, such as the Instinct (I own both an Instince and an iPhone).

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