Yes, I’m glad I switched from my BlackBerry Curve to the iPhone 3GS. No, I’m not switching back.
But amid the hosannahs and salaaming that always accompany this particular device, it’s time someone finally spoke up about its deficiencies.
So here are three things I hate about my iPhone:
It vaporizes emails I have written that are waiting to be sent. Yesterday afternoon, while I flew east from Arizona to New York in seat 32B, I did everything right. I shut down everything on the phone that could possibly drain extra battery juice, and I dimmed the screen so completely that I could barely see it. And then I used the next three hours to write some 30-odd emails on it, some of which were quite elaborate. And then, shortly before landing, I noticed that the outbox on the phone said that only 17 emails were waiting to be sent. I searched high and low: drafts, old email boxes, you name it. No joy. A dozen emails had been vaporized. And not just any emails: The longest and most elaborate ones. Which I had to recreate from scratch later, on my laptop, when I should have been sleeping. I assume this was a memory issue. Maybe it was a bug. Whatever it was, thanks a bunch, Apple.
It vaporizes revisions I have made to “Notes.” For a while there, I was addicted to the note-taking feature on the iPhone. Then I noticed something strange: When I reopened and edited a note I had previously saved, the revisions often disappeared. This happened again and again. I assumed it was a bug that Apple would soon fix, so I updated the software. And then it kept happening. So I’m done with Apple’s “Notes” program. I use Evernote now.
It takes forever to download emails–and it starts by downloading only the “FROM” and “SUBJECT” lines and then only later downloads the content. Go ahead, blame AT&T, but I’m tired of this little tease. I can tell from the “FROM” and “SUBJECT” download that I’ve received an important email, but then I click on it and all I get is the whirling arrow. Sometimes the content comes in eventually. Sometimes it doesn’t. Either way, it’s annoying. And here’s another thing that’s annoying about this little “feature.” Apple’s SPAM filter either sucks or is non-existent, so I get boatloads of SPAM mixed in with my emails. So I delete them as soon as I see them. But if I delete them based on the “FROM” and “SUBJECT” info, they re-appear again–because the phone presumably assumes that I haven’t downloaded them. So I have to delete the same SPAM that Google effortless filters out not once but twice.
The phone forgets email addresses that it used to recognise and auto-complete. This infuriates me. I’ll exchange a bunch of emails with, say, Joe Weisenthal, and for a while, the phone knows who Joe Weisenthal is. Every time I type “jwe…” into the address field, up pops Joe Weisenthal’s full address. And that’s cool. Because it sucks to have to type [email protected] on your iPhone when you’re trying to send a quick email (go ahead–just try typing that without making errors. And don’t even get me started on what the “auto-correct” does to jweisenthal). But if some days or weeks pass before I have to send another unsolicited email to Joe Weisenthal (ie, one in which I’m not answering a prior email), the phone will have forgotten Joe Weisenthal’s email address! So I have to retype the whole thing! Infuriating. (Go ahead and blast me for being so stupid and lazy as to not just add Joe Weisenthal to my address book. But screw that–the iPhone should just do it for me. Anytime I send an email to someone, the phone should remember his or her email address forever. And don’t lie and be fanboyish and say that you don’t wish yours did that.)
The calendar doesn’t sync with Google Calendar–and, therefore, doesn’t work offline. What is that crap? I get that Apple wants me to use ONLY APPLE stuff. But I’m just not going to do that. I use Gmail on Google Calendar, in part so I can access my stuff on any device, not just Apple’s. So forcing me to use Apple’s calendar is a non-starter. But at least as far as I can tell, Apple doesn’t offer an easy way to populate the calendar they give me with Google Calendar data. (And, last time I checked, Google didn’t have an auto-updating Google Calendar app.) So that means that, if I’m offline, I don’t have my calendar. And that sucks.
So I guess that’s five things I hate about my iPhone, not three. And there are more where those came from.
So get cracking, Apple!
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