iPod + mobile phone + little tablet Mac = iPhone

Wow with a capital wow. Apple’s iPhone turns out to be a cross between an iPod, a phone and a tablet Mac. It’s a widescreen iPod with a touch screen, and from the stuff Engadget’s throwing up right now (including the image below) it’s possibly the sexiest device ever made.

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The keynote’s still going on as I write this so I’ve no idea of price, availability etc. I hope it’s coming to the UK and doesn’t cost a bomb.

A few minutes later…

If this is as good as it looks, the iPhone could be more important than the Mac. Because it’s an OS X device it’s got a proper version of Safari, so you can do things like Google Maps and other AJAX goodness. Proper email and push email too, and Dashboard-style widgets. Blimey.

Update again…

There have been a few rumours that this might be Steve Jobs’ last keynote. If so, this is turning out to be a hell of a final performance.

69 thoughts on “iPod + mobile phone + little tablet Mac = iPhone”

  1. I can’t say exactly what is was, but something about mail annoyed me and I went to thunderbird. Thunderbird annoys me that when you reply it always starts the reply at the bottom of the message rather than the top and I don’t know how to change it.

    My impressions of mac os after a few months using it as my main OS is that is is different. I can’t say that it is better or more reliable than XP as it hasn’t been.

    One thing that does annoy me a bit is that you are forced to use the mouse more than in windows. You can’t, for example, highlight a file a hit enter to open it. You can’t do the same with delete.

    Other things…When you have a kernel panic there is absolutely no indication as to the cause, etc.
    Getting video to work is a nightmare. I rarely have to use XP but that is one thing that just works.
    Keyboard randomly stops working in Firefox.
    The mighty mouse is absolutely awful

    A lot of things that I know how to do in Windows I know that I need to work out how to do in mac as it can do it under Darwin. Those things I won’t whinge about.

    Not to get into the handbagging between tm and Stephen, but I don’t think that the “Just done right” is right. “Done Prettier”, perhaps.

  2. >I can’t say exactly what is was,

    Yeah. Strange but I can’t actually put my finger on any one thing, yet the more I use it the more I realise that it isn’t very good at all. I guess I haven’t really thought about it, I’ve just let my subconcious come to the conclusion it’s rubbish and moved on. To be honest I don’t use my mac often enough for e-mailing for it really get to me.

    Oh – the spell checker completley giving up and not identifying mis-spelled words as being wrong is one of the more obvious bugs. You fix one spelling mistake in a sentence and suddenly another one pops up later in the same paragraph. Of course if you type better than I do you’ll never notice that one. I may be the ultimate test case for that one…

    Like Gary said though it’s a lot better now that in 10.3 – so maybe the next version will be fantastic.

  3. > You can’t, for example, highlight a file a hit enter to open it. You can’t do the same with delete.

    Command+O and Command+Delete respectively.

    Well, Mail’s not upsetting me yet (apart from not being able to switch off automatic marking-emails-as-read, which is minor). But I really loathe Thunderbird.

  4. >but I can’t, because I’d be labeled a fanboy again

    Yet risking being labelled a drama queen is ok?

    Being labelled incorrectly by the irony-impaired is something I shall have to live with, alas.

    Regarding the free apps in OS X: yes, none of them are perfect. I don’t use Mail myself, and I only use Safari for Gmail, so I can easily switch to my mail without hunting through tabs in Firefox. And OS X has its annoyances, no doubt. (Finder, anyone? And “Mail” has to be the stupidest name for an app ever.) But I think it’s more than just prettiness that sets OS X apart. As John Gruber argues, good user interface design is very hard to achieve, and it’s very easy to overlook it (if it works, you tend not to notice it) and dismiss it as just “prettiness”. The feeling I get from using a Mac is that the designers have tried, first and foremost, to make using the computer as easy as possible. That’s not to say they always succeed. But so often when using a Microsoft product, one gets the feeling that other priorities have come first. The plethora of dialog boxes seem to be intended to shield Microsoft from liability, or influence you to take actions that are in Microsoft’s interest, rather than your own. What user cares whether a driver has been “signed” by Microsoft? She just wants the darn mouse to work without having to worry about such nonsense. We won’t even go into all the steps it takes to shut down or sleep your computer in Vista. And even the menu at the top of the screen in OSX is a help: it makes it much easier to select items, because it’s impossible to overshoot the top of the screen.

  5. >But I really loathe Thunderbird.

    Strange isn’t it – Firefox is great but TB is the like the results of some horrible genetic experiment between Firefox and every mail program you ever really, really disliked. It’s like FF crossed with GroupWise then washed in a bath of lotus notes. try as I might I can’t love it.

    >because it’s impossible to overshoot the top of the screen.

    I’m clearly physically impaired too – since I find it impossible to overshoot the bottom of the screen either.

  6. I’m clearly physically impaired too – since I find it impossible to overshoot the bottom of the screen either.

    Not sure of the relevance of this, given that we’re talking about pulldown menus, which, because they are found below the title bars of windows in XP, are never at the top of the screen or at the bottom…

  7. >>And even the menu at the top of the screen in OSX is a help

    I don’t like having the menu at the top of the screen. I actually think the windows approach is more user friendly and less visually confusing as there is no requirement to hide unused applications. I don’t think I’ve ever accidently clicked on a different program in a windows environment.

  8. > I don’t think I’ve ever accidently clicked on a different program in a windows environment.

    Fair point. I think this is one of those things that neither side does better, just differently.

    Personally, I’m just glad there’s competition in the market. Can you imagine how crap Windows would be without Apple? And, without Windows, Apple would probably still be somewhere around OS8.

  9. >no requirement to hide unused applications

    Yeah. Expose is nice, but it should be a hint to them – when you have to write and entire suite of software for you OS so people can sort out their windows that probably means that their not easy enough to sort out in the first place.

    Still once you get used to hitting F9 it’s great.

  10. The F9 thing is just superb. I think Apple used to be open to criticism on the Window-sorting front (though not a whole lot more than Windows, to be honest), but F9 has sorted it. It is by far the best window-sorting navigation type thing I’ve ever seen.

  11. > We won’t even go into all the steps it takes to shut down or sleep your computer in Vista.

    To sleep or lock the PC in vista: two clicks
    To sleep or log out a Mac: two clicks

    To choose a different shutdown option in vista: three clicks.

    It’s hardly a major obstacle.

  12. Other than hibernate – what’s the difference?

    The mac has log off, switch user, sleep, restart and shutdown and lock is in another menu. There are multiple keyboard shortcuts too.

  13. I didn’t say the Mac was brilliant in this regard; I said it was a problem with Vista. One small problem I have with the Macbook is that I like to shut the lid of a laptop without having anything happen at all, and I can’t figure out how to disable the automatic sleep-when-the-lid’s-shut.

    Personally, I reckon Spolsky goes a bit too far: the difference between restart and shut down isn’t confusing for anyone. But he’s right about sleep and hibernate and log off and switch user. And he’s quite an amusing writer.

    I reckon the Mac’s defaults for its power button get the balance about right: press the button and you get shut down, restart, or sleep. Nice and simple. I think it’s a fair approach to have lots of options in menus and such for the techies as long as you have a nice simple interface for those who can’t be bothered, and as long as the simple interface is the obvious one that you can’t help but find first. The problem with Vista is that all the potentially confusing options are the up-front defaults, and none of them are significantly more obvious than the others.

  14. I still don’t see it as a problem. Sleep seems like a sensible default option to me, and you can change it if you don’t like it. You can also change what the physical power button does. I think vista’s power management options are excellent, personally.

  15. Actually, while we’re on the subject of OS moans: the inability to resize OS X’s icon grid. Gaaah. Gaaah. Gaaah. Etc.

  16. > I still don’t see it as a problem. Sleep seems like a sensible default option to me, and you can change it if you don’t like it.

    The likes of you and me don’t see it as a problem. I think the point of the article was that the default options should be so good that people who aren’t so good at these things and so can’t figure out how to change it don’t have to.

  17. Oh yeah. I do think there’s a big difference between Apple and Microsoft’s approach: MS goes “do you like this? What about this? Now? What else would you like? Yes? More of that too? Two of them? Sure! We can do that! Please like us!”. Whereas Apple goes “here’s what you’re getting. If you don’t like it, fuck off”.

  18. Heh heh heh.

    These days, though, I think it’s more “We’re open source now. Here’s what you’re getting. If you don’t like it, fuck off and program an improvement yourself, give it to us for free, and then we’ll sell it back to you.”

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