Three G’z

Posted by Scott

Unless you live in an actual cave or have an actual life, you know / care  that the iPhone 3G is now available and that the entire world is completely freaking out. When the first one came out I tried to play it cool and pretend like I didn’t want one; but once the lines died down about a month later, I caved in and got it. I was planning on doing the same this time around, but thanks to a bit of luck I was able to get one at an overlooked AT&T store by my house after only 30 minutes of waiting. Apparently everyone thought the only place that was selling them in San Francisco was the downtown Apple Store, because there were like 15 people in line at the Mission AT&T.

I always really enjoyed the original one, it’s a huge help while traveling, and as a designer, the slide show functionality is invaluable for client meetings and giving impromptu portfolio viewings. There were definitely a lot of little (and not so little) problems I had with the old one, and while most have been addressed in the new version it still leaves a bit to be desired. Regardless, it’s without a doubt a major triumph of design and usability; the user experience Jonathan Ive & Co have delivered is light years beyond anything else out there. The original iPhone was the first Apple product I ever owned and the experience led me to switch over to Mac for my work. It’s a pretty major feat to distill an all-encompassing user experience like that found in OSX and nearly replicate it in the form factor of a phone. That was enough for me to take a harder look at OSX as a design / work platform.

There are countless articles written about the iPhone by far more informed people than myself, so I won’t go into detail about my opinions (but needless to say I am loving this one even more than the last). But I am interested to know what the design community thinks of it: Do you have one? As a designer, do you feel devices like this benefit your workflow / business? Do you see it as a successful design? Do you want to bang your head against a wall every time you hear about the f&*$%ing thing? Let us all know what you think.

28 Comments Leave A Comment


PT says:

July 14, 2008 at 12:53 am

It’s something that i’d like to eventually purchase, i don’t really think that it would benefit my workflow, actually it would probably distract me from doing what I’m meant to be doing and therefore make me less money! I will in the long term buy one.


DE says:

July 14, 2008 at 1:10 am

I think it’s the most amazing phone I’ve ever experienced. It’s like your sixth sense and incredibly, you already know how to use it even before seeing it. It’s pure brilliance.


Op says:

July 14, 2008 at 1:31 am

Haha… was real keen on one of these whe I heard it was $199new zealnd , that is until I found out how much the plans are here to run them = $250 a month! insane amount to spend over here on a network that offers crappy service.
Ah well couple more years to wait and I might be able to afford to use one :P


jefta Varwijk says:

July 14, 2008 at 2:00 am

i’m not really into phones, but here in the netherlands a friend of mine got his 3G for like, $70 for the phone and $45 a month, T-Mobile.

and as for the designing, although it has a great browser on a pretty big screen, it’ll never compare to a fullsize computerscreen, let alone an 30″ apple cinema display. So even getting inspired will be very different.

buy, like scott said, it can come in handy to show some work to potential clients.

and its a lovely device


Mirwen72 says:

July 14, 2008 at 2:10 am

It’s nice thingie indeed. Nice toy but I don’t know it just doesn’t attract me. Maybe it’s because it wouldn’t help my work. If someone would give it to me than ok :). But I am certainly much more crazy about Wacom Cintique or from Mackintosh family Mack Book Air.
So I shall kep my good old V-type samsung cell phone in black and silver a little longer and wait for some more crazy stuff :D.


Mirwen72 says:

July 14, 2008 at 2:23 am

And I am certainly more crazy about Iai To – it’s blunt katana for practising oh- my. above all technical stuff I would love to have that!
Sorry I was carried away


SatPirott says:

July 14, 2008 at 3:46 am

A really, really, really great phone !
But in germany it’s not more than frickin’ expensive !
I wish to be able to buy it some day, but it is really a mess what they’re doing here with it. Just too expensive. And I am not talking about the phone itself – I am talking about the contracts you’re bound to !

But I am happy for you to be one of the happy owners.

And I am glad that you switched to Mac !
It’s a ‘must have’ for any designer – just my opinion.

Great website by the way !
I am always taking a look on the updates per rss.
Your way of art ist something I liked a long time ago and I am happy that someone can do it better than me. So I can still watch it ;)

And your music ! WOW !

Man, If I ever get my study in Miami or San Francisco, I WILL VISIT YOU !

Have a nice day !


thelottery says:

July 14, 2008 at 5:17 am

To me, the iPhone is the phone that actually does what other phones claim they do. Before the iPhone surfaced, I was in need of a portable email/web solution. (I’m a designer and I do the majority of my work via email, so having emails—old and new—in my pocket is invaluable.)

At the time I was a T-Mobile subscriber, so I bought the T-Mobile MDA (Note: when purchased off-contract, the MDA cost $499. And then I had to buy a 1gig card for an additional $99. Yet people complained about the iPhone pricing. That always cracked me up.) The MDA is great in theory, miserable in practice. The UI is simply horrible. Web sites looked ridiculous, email rarely worked (and never told me why), and even the phone itself dropped calls I’d say around 80% of the time.

Then came the iPhone.

Holy crap… a phone that actually does what it says it does. Yes, not a perfect solution… yet. But the iPhone has done for communication what Tivo did for television: it completely changed the way I do things on a daily basis, almost immediately, to the point where I don’t know what life was like before it. When I have questions, I look them up on the iPhone. When I need to order sushi, I get the phone number by searching the restaurant’s name in Maps and clicking on the phone number. I even show clients comps on the beautiful display when my laptop isn’t convenient.

The iPhone has been, for me, an invaluable tool that nails both form and function… and it’s even pretty fun.


drew kora says:

July 14, 2008 at 5:22 am

I’d love to have one, and in some ways feels like I *should* have one. (Isn’t it odd how brand loyalty + hype does that to you…people are like “hey drew, you’re a designer and a mac guy…wha???? you don’t have one?) But I don’t. I can’t really justify the need for it. Even with the phone being much cheaper now, I still don’t need to dole out all that money for the plans.

Sure, if I had it, I’d use it and love it. I just recently got text messaging on my bare-bones phone and I’m fine with it. If I ever go full time freelance or have a job that requires me to travel much, I would make the investment because I could use a ‘mobil office.’

So that’s my take on the iPhone. Awesome, but a luxury for most, not a necessity.


Wallace Henning says:

July 14, 2008 at 5:52 am

This new iphone is great! I’m using it right now and it’s sorting out my messy typing!! I do wish it had copy and paste function though! But over all it’s fantastic, it’s so cool being able to pick up your email anywhere. Also like Scott said, taking work around with you is very handy. I think if/when adobe cone into play things will get really good for designers.


Tom says:

July 14, 2008 at 7:10 am

Does anyone remember back in the 90s when it took 3-5 minutes to download a jpeg? Back when AOL said they’ll have streaming video on the web (*gasp*). Back when pagers were it. and for that matter, when HyperColor shirts were in popular demand.

It’s amazing how far it’s come so that we can have these abilities at our fingertips at the speed we do. The iphone is a benchmark tech that will no doubt continue to push the industry. This is something that other companies are already emulating and will continue to do so because of its intuitiveness and all around “cool” factor

I’ll wait till my me and my bank account are on better terms then I’ll make my purchase.


Jayden Lawson says:

July 14, 2008 at 8:35 am

I’ve loved the iPhone since I saw it jump out of Jobs’ pants. I haven’t used it much for my design needs, but I have had someone show me their portfolio on one, and that was sweet as.

My main use has been the Google Maps App…. anything that helps me get to a client meeting on time and without hassles has my thumbs up!

It’s a least a year ahead of anything else out there on the market…. well done Apple.

I too have made the Apple switch, but mainly because of Bootcamp enabling me to test on both PC (Vista) and Mac.

What’s doing with Apple’s mouse acceleration though!? It drives me absolutely nuts every time I boot in to OSX!!


Newton Poetry says:

July 14, 2008 at 9:47 am

Before I bought one this weekend, I could think of situations where I said, “Boy, I wish I had an iPhone so I could take a picture of such-and-such.” Having had no camera on my previous cell, the iPhones limited camera was still a boon, and now that I’m using it, I can’t believe I waited a whole year. The camera, the ability to carry iPhoto albums with me, the ability to say, “Gee, I wonder what such-and-such means…” and then pull out mobile Safari and look it up. And it’s darned fun to use, above all. Congrats on getting one.


Scott says:

July 14, 2008 at 10:52 am

sounds like it’s been pretty well received….I always wonder, with over hyped things like this, if some people simply tune out because they’re bombarded with it so much.

I also had the mda on t-mobile before the iphone came out. I got it to do all the things it was “supposed” to do, and which the iphone actually does. the mda was literally worthless, it may have even had negative worth in the respect that if you tried to rely on it for anything, it would let you down (even making phone calls never really worked).

so perhaps it’s a relativity thing, but I’ve had several phones and while many were successful at accomplishing their specified task, making and receiving calls, none tackled the functionality of web browsing / email like the iphone. and after all the stuff it does, you still have an amazing mp3 player in your pocket as well.


mike says:

July 14, 2008 at 11:16 am

I’m not sure what it is but I’m not that much in a hurry to go out and buy one. I hate the hype that goes with it and I would probably lose it or have it stolen. In the same breath I might add that it probably kicks my phone’s ass. But I prefer a smaller bill at the end of the month and that suits me perfectly fine.


Jelle says:

July 14, 2008 at 2:34 pm

Sure it’s a nice gadget. But like others, i can’t justify the need to purchase one. I’m still a student, and i don’t see the need for carrying around such an expensive device with me all the time. A € 50 mobile will do just fine.

That said, it’s a very cool device! If i had the money and if i was doing some more freelance work, i might consider buying one.


vlad says:

July 14, 2008 at 4:53 pm

I think its the best thing Apple did to Mobile Industry. I love it. It does help me with designing. I can check out your site at any moment. All the new Apps and Games are amazing.

There’s just nothing like it.

The design itself just wins people’s eyes. Simplicity and the ease of User Interface makes it easiest phone to use. All other imitators are trying hard, but they all copying in one way or another.

Glad you have one. Welcome to the club. lol


jimm says:

July 14, 2008 at 10:02 pm

checkout usb overdrive x, really helps with mouse acceleration on osx. does other stuff to.


Joshua says:

July 14, 2008 at 10:20 pm

Apple knows gadgets, and this is just the best one out there. It is a great phone, and it handles so many other tasks with equal capability. I first travelled to India with no laptop, just an unlocked, jailbroken iPhone with Edge enabled. I didn’t need the laptop.
If it had more active scanning capabilities it would just be called the tricorder. It’s almost better than most science fiction. Quite frankly I can’t just justify not having it. Yeah and it looks nice too.


Michael says:

July 15, 2008 at 4:26 am

While I was ever fascinated by the few guys I knew that owned the previous one, I was one of the freaks waiting 6 hours camping inside a store till the delivery man brought the gadgets – and I finally got one. While the prices are pretty amazing in Austria (with a surprising density of operators, considering population numbers), the amount of 3G’s that arrived on Friday was almost ridiculous.
But I can only say, it is the only cell phone that does all what I want and need; and whenever I see it in action, I keep smiling, because of the small little animations that support usability. So not only the amount of functions are important (for me), but the way in which they happen.


Jug says:

July 15, 2008 at 3:45 pm

Here in Canada, there aren’t many wireless carriers, so monthly cell phone plans tend to be quite pricey, as is. The iPhone is only being offered through the Rogers network, and prices are OUTRAGELOUSLY expensive…

I’ll have to wait it out, I guess. Not willing to pay $100+ each month for a cell phone bill. :(


Jeff says:

July 16, 2008 at 11:40 am

It’s amazing how our country is all freaking out about the economy and high gas & food prices, yet the minute iPhone comes down in price, we all blow our loads over it. It’s amazing what good marketing and a lot of hype can do for a (mostly) unnecessary product.

It is a cool toy though, and probably some day I’ll get one :)


Jeremy Huntley says:

July 18, 2008 at 7:57 pm

It took me a while to get into the iphone but I finally caved when the 3G model came out. As a graphic designer I find it a great tool to show my work when I don’t have a portfolio handy. I am now an iphone addict.


jill danyelle says:

July 21, 2008 at 1:04 pm

I have a love/hate relationship with all technology. The love – well, all the great things it brings to our lives, which is too long to list here, but I assume you know of what I speak. The hate – attention consumption and rapid obsolescence. iphone original – twice as expensive, half as fast.

That said, I switched to macs long ago and have never been happier. Just bought my third. So when my cellphone broke into two pieces and I was carrying it around with a large rubber band around it, I finally knew what I had to do. I was an early ipod user too, but never replaced it after it bounced down a flight of marble stairs – ouch! Plus, I had $100 credit at Apple and the price had dropped $100, so it was an easy choice.

The multifunctionality is great, some things should be easier, like using it as a zip drive for documents. I am sure there is some way to do that, i just haven’t looked into it. Also, you should be able to turn it and have a wider keyboard. Switching to AT&T kind of sucked. Looked into jailbreaking the phone, but it still wouldn’t run on Verizon, so wasn’t worth it at the risk of turning it into a $400 paper weight – then, along with my cracked ipod, i’d have a set.

Finally, yes, I show people my work with it ALL OF THE TIME. Super convenient, a feature I didn’t really expect to be so handy. A picture is worth a thousand words.


Paul says:

July 21, 2008 at 2:11 pm

When I hear about the iPhone, it makes me want to place my still attached penis into a blender and activate the ‘puree’ setting. I want to see if I can do it while maintaining complete emotional detachment. Then, truly will I have reached enlightenment.

Yeah, it’s just a phone that get’s the internet. I had a RAZR that did the same thing, except it cost less. If I have time to get online, then I am already in front of a computer. If I don’t have time to get online, then I am driving, or on the subway, in which case there is no signal. Other than that, I don’t want to be on the internet, i.e. when I’m eating.

The iPhone is hype and effective marketing. When it dies, I want to be there to show it that I was stronger. That I was the one man who could beat it.