Thursday, June 25, 2009

iPhone OS 3.0 Problems and Suggestions

Altought the new iPhone OS 3.0 update has brought us lots of new featuresentenas and improvements, the truth is: there's still a lot to be done.

For instance, while we can now delete a single SMS/MMS in a thread (before you could only delete all the message from a single contact) the process isn't quite as straightforward as you'd expect from Apple.
First you have to select "Edit" and then choose the message(s) you want to delete, or presse the "clear all" button to delete it all.
At least they could implement a swipe to delete like in the email section, to prevent the edit-select-confirm steps.

Also, the App update information still doesn't show how big it is. I'd like to know if I'm about to download a 100Kb or 10MB update, to choose if I'll do it over 3G or wait until I get to a WiFi hotspot.

It's also a bit annoying not to know if you're trying to download a previously downloaded app *before* you "buy" it again. With thousands of similar apps, it's quite risky to press the buy button thinking you're doing it for a previously bought app, only to find you're just bought a different one that doesn't quite suit you.
How about that message showing up *before* you risk spending more money?

There are also some API flaws (I suspect) that should be addressed. Don't you find it annoying when you click to share or email a friend inside an App and get thrown out to the email app? Why can't a 3rd party app just use the email function *without* exiting? Having to go back to the previous app and finding exactly where you were... It's really so un-apple-like!

And last but not least, some simple suggestions that I'd expect Apple to have done by now.
For a company that spent time animating the "Airplane mode" toggle with a small airplane zooming by, I can't understand why they haven't done any of these:

The calendar App shows the current day, right? Why can't they do the same with some other Apps?

For instance, the  Weather App could easily show the current weather status for the last displayed city. It could allow us to configure it to automatically update every "X" hour, or even via silent "push notifications". I'd prefer to see the current weather conditions instead of the always sunny state.

Talking about the Calendar App, why does the iPhone allow us to enter birthday data to our contacts, but then fails to notify us of any upcoming anniversary? I've been using FastContacts and Google Calendar for that, but it would be nice if Apple did it in the iPhone.

Also still on the calendar, why can't we set an event reminder to be sooner than just 2 days? Why can't I set a reminder 1 week or 1 month before an event? Unexplainable!

And last, also a tiny detail - the kind you'd expect Apple to take pride in doing right - the Clock App. Why can't it display the proper time instead of the static 10:15 time?
It's not as if it would drain you battery dry or use precious CPU time. They'd only have to ensure it was up to date once they were about to display it; and if you were on the menu screen (hardly needing CPU) it would just update it again once every minute. No big deal, no wasting CPU cycles if you're inside a CPU hungre 3D game.

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