Overrated: The iPhone software noose limits its appeal


The first iPhone was able to bring iTunes integration and all parts of the Internet* to the mobile arena, to the delight of millions. When it was followed up with the App store and the iPhone 3G, millions more were once again enthralled by the ability to surf the Internet, read their email and play games on the go. From the way that the Internet and the mainstream media have reacted, you'd have thought that the iPhone was the second coming of Christ.

It's hard to imagine how we got by without the ability to do these cool tasks for all those years -- Oh wait, I forgot -- the same tasks that the iPhone can do, Windows Mobile users have been doing for years. On top of these shared tasks, Windows Mobile also lets users install any program they want without the need for it to pass through Apple's vetting and censorship process. Unfortunately, loading iPhones with Apple-vetted applications via the App Store has caused many an iPhone to crash. Those who choose to load other software must first jailbreak their iPhone, thereby voiding the warranty.

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The iPhone looks cool and maybe it even makes you feel cool (in the same way cigarettes do for 14-year-olds), but in the end it is still just a phone. While it has aesthetic beauty, the usefulness of the phone has been overrated by many, helped in part due to the cult of Apple followers who lined city blocks just to shell out for a new phone. Seriously, how good can a phone with all of these features be if making full use of it requires users to break its warranty. Did I mention the iPhone can't copy and paste?