iPhone Doubts? – Don’t Sweat The Small Stuff

A lot of people are skeptical of the significance of the Apple’s iPhone. Like Dave Winer, I think Steve is smarter than folks realize. Most questions raised fall into one of three general categories, none of which alter the bigger picture in my view. One big gotcha is lurking but let’s take a look at the small stuff first.

  • Price is too high
    • This is laughable – just like the iPod prices will come down but only faster. If you can make an OS/X device that small, there’s no reason why you would only make iPhones. The iPhone technology will allow Apple to offer a whole family of easy to use computers uh web-aware devices(you didn’t forget the wi-fi didya?). A Mac mini costs the same but doesn’t have a monitor or keyboard. iMacs are shrinking in size and Apple changed it’s name – maybe Steve is trying to reinvent the computer industry as well?(see Dave Winer link above)
  • Phone Industry Issues
    • Apple doesn’t know the phone business. Well that’s why they’re in bed with the biggest provider(see Dave Winer link above).
    • An exclusive with Cingular will keep people from switching because Cingular’s network performance lags behind it’s competitors. What they don’t realize is that by the time the deal runs out, Apple with have built the above-mentioned family of products and will be poised to become a major player in the phone business. A bidding war between Cingular and it’s rivals is in the making and no matter what the outcome, Apple is going to win big. (see Dave Winer link above)
  • Capabilities
    • Battery life is too short – if you watch a video you won’t be able to use your phone afterwards. That assumes that most people will want to watch full length movies regularly.
    • The lack of 3G means people won’t buy it because Cingular EDGE is too slow. It’s true that people generally won’t downgrade performance but if they’re already Cingular customers …
    • Apple won’t let 3rd party developers create products for it. While it’s likely Apple will limit some internal access, it’s hard to imagine how or why they can stop people from using the web to download code. Certainly Dashboard Widgets should work right away and how long will it take for people to figure out how to create executables that can run on iPhone.

So enough with the small stuff – what’s the gotcha? Well it has nothing to do with the iPhone product and it probably won’t prevent iPhone from having a major impact on the industry. However, a protracted, nasty legal battle with Cisco has the potential to really put a dent in the pocketbook. iPhone will still have a major impact on the computers and phones industries because as with most disruptive products, people really, really want one. I do – now.

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1 Comment »

  1. Anonymous said

    These doubts that some people are raising are nonsense. I might point out that the list price of the Palm Treo 700p is still $649 (without mobile provider discounts). Battery life is spec’d as 4.5hrs, and has a 1.3megapixel camera… It goes without saying that the Apple iPhone is superior in countless ways.

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