10 Ways Apple Can Improve the iPhone Discussion

Discussion in 'Headline News' started by Ed Hardy, Sep 18, 2011.

  1. Ed Hardy

    Ed Hardy TabletPCReview Editor Staff Member

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  2. Hook

    Hook Professional Daydreamer

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    In other words... become Android. ;) :p :rolleyes:
     
  3. Ed Hardy

    Ed Hardy TabletPCReview Editor Staff Member

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    There's definitely things that Apple can learn from Android. And webOS, too. The webOS system for switching between apps is vastly better than either the iOS's or Android's, for example.

    The reverse is also true. I'm starting the process of writing "10 Ways Google Can Improve Android".

    There's areas where both iOS and Android are weak. Both their web browsers need improvments, and both could use a file manager.
    -
     
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  4. Hook

    Hook Professional Daydreamer

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    I agree. I was kidding a little bit. It was just that the list almost read as a list of things that Android tends to do better than Apple. It is possible that your list for Android will read like a list of things Android can learn from Apple(or WebOS). I won't know since I am unfamiliar with either.
     
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  5. brickman65

    brickman65 It's a state of mind..

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    Widgets...Meh.

    Improve the Lockscreen...ABSOLUTELY!!! I would love to have something like the JailBreak App LockInfo as a part of iOS. LockInfo puts all your quick look info that you want on the front screen similar to what Android or Symbian does.

    I have heard that the Email App will be greatly improved in iOS5. You should be about to "mark as flgged", etc. I wish they would improve the way you do attachments. I have gotten use to it but it is totally opposite of how you do it on a desktop. I also hope that you can attach more than one file at a time. Although trying to sending too many attachments over 3G might be "laggy".

    File System? IDK. If you have D2G then you have a File Systems. Just MVHO.

    I can't make up my mind on Flash. I know the argument against it and don't disagree but if the rest of the world is going to continue to use it....
     
  6. Guest

    Guest Has Bad Feeling About This

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    I like many of these suggestions, but not #6 or #9.

    #6: iPhones DO have Caps Lock (enable it under Settings->General->Keyboard), and Apple already includes a clever shortcut for typing a period without switching screens. Although it is annoying to switch pages occasionally for other punctuation, there is very little Apple could do about this without making the keys practically microscopic.

    And #9 is not really a feature suggestion. It is more like a "philosophical disagreement." It's not like it just never occurred to Apple to try to implement Flash. They intentionally made a conscious decision not to support it. If you put some time into observing the tremendous drag Flash puts on even desktop computers, it is hard to disagree with this decision, and just saying "I don't like it" isn't really enough.
     
  7. r0k

    r0k Dazed

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    Nice list, Ed. But I have to disagree about Flash. Heck, even Microsoft has dumped Flash in the Metro version of IE in Windows 8. So I'm looking at those blank spaces in IE on my Win 8 virtual machine just like I'm looking at them on my iOS devices. And you know what else? I use flash block. I have to deliberately click on flash to make it run. Sadly there are some things that just need flash like previewing songs on mp3.com, but every day they are fewer and farther between. When I do allow flash to run, I have to reload the page that was using it (so it will once again be disabled) to get the fans on my Macbook to tone down a bit.

    The mail client on iOS is a bit of a joke. I asked an Apple genius about the ability to "reply as" whoever the email is addressed to if I'm checking my gmail account and happen to have my school or work email forwarded there. I don't want my academic or business contacts using my gmail address. The guy told me this was an "advanced feature." Yeah, right. Another omission is "mark all as read." Apple arrogantly presumes I only check my email on my iPhone or if I do check it elsewhere, everything is always IMAP so it should magically show up marked as read. Poopy poop. Just give us a "mark as read" button outside of Cydia.

    I must heartily agree about the filesystem. The idea that I can do everything I need to do via dropbox or that I want 8 copies of some 400 Meg file just so 8 apps on my iPad can open it is simply preposterous.

    As for widgets, there is a way to make useful information show up in a "badge" in iOS but I do miss that nice weather app that changed its icon on my Blackberry from sunny to cloudy depending on the weather. In light of several of your recommendations, I'm a little puzzled about the timing of your article. You do realize that iOS 5 is about to improve that lame lock screen and improve notifications, right? I do hope you update your article when you get a chance to review iOS 5.
     
  8. Gerard

    Gerard Mobile Deity

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    Are you really comfortable with the wording of that first sentence? The iPhone certainly did not develop from PDAs, since Apple's only prior foray into the PDA realm was in the previous decade with the Newton - ancient history and not at all relevant, especially since handwriting recognition and a stylus are nowhere in sight on an iPhone. But the first few years of smartphones were all PDAs with phones slapped in besides. Windows Mobile phones, starting 7 or 8 years ago, were essentially Pocket PCs with phone features added. Everything PPC users were used to was still there, just with added phone functionality. The Blackberry has (apparently - I've never used one so not speaking from experience) slowly evolved into a smartphone, and it was a PDA with push email to begin with, right? Actually a pager first... so maybe that development path is slightly less clear.

    The Palm devices were PDAs before anyone else had PDAs, unless one counts the old Casio addressbooks and the like, which I don't. Eventually Palm turned their PDAs into smartphones by adding in phone hardware and software. No parallel evolution there, again, just a PDA with phone added.

    Android came along as a phone/PDA because of their late entry into the game. The Android contacts and calendar are somewhat difficult to get used to for a PPC user like me, but after a month I'm getting there. A Bluetooth keyboard (HP Touchpad thing, works quite well) is helping with inputting larger amounts of information, and CalenGoo is certainly an improvement over the native calendar... but the native one isn't terrible. Android devices owe a lot to PDA evolution. My Samsung came with a 'My Files' app, which is, wait for it... a file explorer! It won't go to the device root, but there are bunches of file managers which do so no worries. It browses everywhere a user will typically put files, so it's useful. For 'power users' there's TotalCommander or Root Explorer or whatever. The native email app isn't brilliant but it works quite well - but I'm really hoping nPOPuk for Android won't take too long in development so I can have my folders and group lists on my phone again, the way I want them, not the way Google thinks they should be.

    Anyway, everywhere I look on this Android phone I'm seeing a PDA, same as I've seen for the previous decade using Pocket PCs. As for the iPhone lacking the 'array of options that PDA users enjoyed' I have no doubt you are 100% bang on there. A large number of my musician clients are Appleheads, convinced that the iPhone's advent marked the beginning of pocket computing somehow. And yet for every feature the iPhone boasts, there were already a dozen or more better programs available for Windows Mobile. Apple's browser, brilliant? What about Netfront? It didn't pinch-zoom, sure, but that was a hardware limitation of the devices - kudos to Apple for finally bringing that to the marketplace, and many others have since adopted this important feature. But in software they really had nothing new. In the past few years umpteen devices have come along with better features for serious PDA users. The iPhone 5 will sell gazillions, no doubt, but that's because there is no shortage of people who are not interested in a PDA, and a PDA it is not.
     
  9. Ed Hardy

    Ed Hardy TabletPCReview Editor Staff Member

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    While I partially agree with you, I'm sure that room be found on the main keyboard for the comma and the apostrophe. These are included in just about every sentence, and having to go hunt for them is a hassle.
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  10. Ed Hardy

    Ed Hardy TabletPCReview Editor Staff Member

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    I'm completely comfortable with it, though I can't explain all my reasons here without totally going off on a tangent. But let me point out that the two most obvious examples of PDA operating systems evolving into smartphone ones went defunct without ever gathering big audiences. True, the Palm OS and Windows Mobile were used on some of the first smartphones, but these devices never really took off. Palm transformed its operating system into the webOS, and that also didn't gather a huge audience. The Palm OS, webOS, and Windows Mobile have since been swept away, and the successor to Windows Mobile isn't garnering a big following.

    To be clear, I'm not arguing that the Palm OS and Windows Mobile were never used on smartphones. But when you compare how many of these devices were sold compared to the success of iOS and Android... well, there's no comparison. Devices like the Treo and the HTC Touch sold in tiny numbers compared to what's happening today.

    Smatphones didn't become successful until their operating systems were made by companies that had never made PDAs. For good or ill, that's the way things worked out.
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