Since we have a long time to contemplate and prognosticate on the new iPhone announced this week, I thought we better start with a list of questions and answers that we do know about the Apple iPhone. Then we can all spend the next 6 months talking about what we don’t know. The best Q&A article I found so far is by NYT editor, David Pogue. As always, David explains the basic features in a unique and comical manner. Here is what he had to say…
Another huge category is iPhone questions. Never mind that many of these questions either (a) have been answered by Apple, either on its elaborate, interactive Web site or the free video of Steve Jobsâ€™s speech, or (b) come from people who fantasize about fitting the iPhone into their own particular wish lists.
(My favorite sarcastic comment, which was a response to these responses, which were in response to my last blog entry: â€œYeah, yeah, yeah, but can you use it underwater? And can you recharge it using solar power? And does it have an optical scanner that detects your eyeball movements so that you merely have to look at a name in your contacts list and blink in order to choose and call him? Apple, you have a long way to goâ€¦â€)
Anyway, here it is: the ultimate iPhone Frequently Asked Questions list, complete with answers.
ANSWERS TO ALL YOUR QUESTIONS:
Can it be used with anything but Cingular? â€“No.
Is it an â€œunlockedâ€ phone, so I can use it with a carrier other than Cingular? â€“No.
Will there be a non-Cingular version? â€“Not within the first two years.
Can I put my T-Mobile SIM card in it instead of Cingular? â€“No.
But what if I keep asking? Then will it be available beyond Cingular? â€“No.
Can it run Mac OS X programs? â€“No.
Can I add new programs to it? â€“No. Apple wants to control the look and feel and behavior of every aspect of the phone.
Does it run programs from Palm, Symbian, Windows? â€“No.
Does it connect to iChat? â€“No.
Does it have games? â€“No.
Is it ambidextrous? â€“No.
Does it have GPS? â€“No.
Voice recognition? Voice dialing? Voice memos? â€“No, although this could change by June when the phone ships.
Does it get onto the HSDPA (3G) high-speed Internet network that Cingular has rolled out in a few cities? â€“No. But Steve Jobs said a later version of the iPhone will â€” once thereâ€™s enough HSDPA coverage in this country to justify it.
Does the Web browser support Flash or Java? â€“No.
Will it play music over Bluetooth? â€“Unknown.
Can you change the battery yourself? â€“No. Youâ€™ll have to send the phone in to Apple for battery replacement, just as with the iPods.
Can it open Word and Excel documents? â€“No. (Steve Jobs says it can open PDF files, though.)
Can you use it one-handed? â€“Yes, for some functions. But overall, itâ€™s less convenient than on a phone with physical keys.
Can I make a call while driving a car? â€“Not as easily as on a regular cellphone with programmed speed-dial keys. (Besidesâ€“MUST you?)
Does the camera record video? â€“Not yet. Apple may add this feature by June.
Does it connect to standard iPod accessories like car docks and speaker systems? â€“Yes!
Does it work overseas? â€“Yes. Itâ€™s a quad-band GSM phone, meaning you can use it in almost any country (for an added fee, of course).
Is there a Verizon version? â€“NO!!!!
Will they make a non-cellphone versionâ€“a widescreen touch iPod? â€“Nobody knows. Apple doesnâ€™t leak product info until itâ€™s good and ready.
That scrolling through lists thing is glitzy, but what if I have 3,000 names in my address book? â€“Thereâ€™s also an alphabet â€œindex tabâ€ down the right side of the screen, so you can jump to another spot in the list.
Is there a calendar? â€“Yes.
Will it sync with Outlook? â€“No.
What about airplane use? â€“It has a airplane mode (wireless off), just like any cellphone.
Wonâ€™t the screen get smudgy? â€“It does, but you donâ€™t see it except when the screen is off. The one I played with was pretty streaky, but wiping it on my sleeve cleaned it completely.
Who on earth would buy this thing? â€“Obviously not people who ask this question. But thatâ€™s OKâ€“thereâ€™s no requirement that everyone buy the iPhone. More for the rest of us!