Actually Steve, you needn’t bother. Through a somewhat bizarre set of circumstances, I am a happy iPhone owner. Back in December, my mother asked me what I wanted for Christmas. Not wanting her to blow any money on me, I told her I’d love another home-embroidered shirt. When that answer didn’t fly, I decided to go the opposite route and name something so expensive that she’d get frustrated and move on.

“I’d love an iPhone.”

What my brothers had failed to inform me of, however, was the fact that my mother had decided (for reasons still unknown) to by big presents this year. Lo and Behold, a new iphone was born. Not so clever as I though, apparently.

So, I’ve had a month to play with the thing, and I can say that it is, as of this time, the best phone or pda I have ever used bar none. It’s not perfect, of course, so I’ll begin by running down what I don’t like about it:

  • It’s mighty expensive for a phone with a two-year contract.
  • The inability to install 3rd party apps without jail breaking it. (The official SDK is supposed to be released this month, however, so perhaps we’ll see some movement here).
  • Low storage space. My phone has 8GB. I know a new 16GB model has just been released, but even at 16GB, that’s only about half of my music collection. This situation forces me to do something which I detest: make and manage playlists. In my world, the beauty of an mp3 player is that I can pack everything on it and carry it with me. This is not possible with this small amount of storage. Of course, it’s not an mp3 player. It’s a phone with a fine mp3 player function, and to be fair, it has more storage than any other phone I’ve used, but a man can wish.
  • What is the deal with text messages? Am I to believe that a text message is really so much harder on the network than the bandwidth required for voice communication or unlimited data? Why are the iphone plans limited to 50 sms messages a month?
  • Edge – I understand that the 3g modems consume a lot of juice and an edge modem was a compromise to provide good battery life, but man does that suck. Think dial-up for the 00’s.
  • It gets awful dirty. Actually, that’s a complaint I hear a lot, but I’ve never had a phone that didn’t pick up a tremendous amount of face-goo. Yes, the screen gets dirty…just wipe the damn thing.
  • The mail client – actually, when I first got the thing, I couldn’t get the mail client to work with my isp, gmail or work. After the latest update, it works perfectly with my isp and gmail. With work it will only download mail (not send). I’d be concerned, but the folks at work state upfront that they can configure two identical machines to remotely access the mail and one will work and one won’t. The problem seems to lie off-phone.
  • Flash – or the lack thereof. I know apple is a webobjects/ajax group, but flash is the majority stakeholder in the web at the moment, and there is no technical reason for flash not to run on the phone. It was just omitted to push the other tech. Not cool.
  • The earbuds – I realize Apple put a lot of R&D into a bud design that would fit the majority of the crowd, but I am one of those folks that they do not fit. They are constantly falling out of my ears, and the only real options for replacements are $99. Yikes.

Okay…that’s the big problems, here’s what I like:

  • The. Screen. Is. Gorgeous. – While this is just cosmetics, I’ve never had a screen on a phone or pda with which I was fully satisfied. Either I can’t see it outside or it’s too dim in the dark. The iphone is bright and colorful and clear in any situation I’ve encountered. So much teh pretty.
  • The web browser just works (with the exception of flash). Even under opera, I was never satisfied with the browsing capabilities of my old Treo. As long as it doesn’t bump into flash, the safari browser just works and renders the pages accurately.
  • The screen blanks when the phone is brought to the face – With my Treo, my cheek was always hitting the mute button on the touchscreen. With the iphone, the screen blanks when you bring it to your face and reactivates when you pull it away (to hang up or use the touchpad). It’s a small feature, but it’s perfect.
  • Audio – both on receive and send, it is very, very good.
  • Signal – AT&T has improved since I’ve last used them. I get signal (good signal) everywhere including those locations where Verizon failed me.
  • WebApps – while I can’t install apps easily, I can point to webapps with this phone, and the developer community is brilliant. I can do everything on this phone that I’ve ever been able to do on a full-fledged pda…more really.
  • Which brings me to the wi-fi client….simple and it works. No quirks.
  • Silence – there’s a single switch on the side to silence the phone. Brilliant for meetings. No question what the phone is set for.
  • Visual voice mail – Okay…I’m not a salesman, so I don’t get tons of voicemail, but I’ve always wondered why we had to go through all the hassles to get voice mail in the past. You know…call this number, enter password, touch 1 to hear voice mail, though 76 to delete, etc, etc. On the iphone, I point to voicemail and hit play. So simple.
  • Configurable home screen – I see the apps I want on my home screen and nothing else. How hard was that guys?

I could go on, but I’m not going to. I’ll just say this. When I was a kid, my friend John and I used to talk about computers (this was back in the TRS-80 days and Apple II days) and how one day, we would have something we could hold in our hands and play movies and games and be able to communicate with each other. The iphone is what we imagined. I LOVE this thing….

So no need to send me one, Steve…though actually, Laurie would kill for one! Please Steve…please?