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Insane In The Membrane: Anything And Everything's Fair Game


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by , 12-02-2007 at 11:04 PM (1798 Views)

Every now and then, the adolescent gadget geek in me surfaces in all his glory (drooling and all) when I chance across a new tech toy. And that's exactly what happened when I bought myself the much coveted, mass marketed, soon-to-be-ubiquitous iPhone. The romance didn't start off that way though.

As a gadget aficionado, you have your predilections towards certain brands; this is the same way you always fall for a specific type of woman (blonde, tattooed, pierced, whatever tickles your fancy). For me, in the realm of cell phones, her name has always been Nokia. In terms of computers, PC compatibles take the prize. I am one of those avid loather of all things MacIntosh: I guess I've always thought it to be a bimbo's machine, however far from the truth that might turn out to be. You see, in the olden days of Windows 3.1 for the PC, most users could penetrate into the very heart of a computer to tweak and play around with the hardware to get the best performance; changing video cards, upgrading RAM, installing faster CD-ROMs and what not. Back then, you couldn't do that with a Mac because everything came as one inseparable unit like a giant paper weight: Hence, my bias. As you might already know, the creation of the iMac machines in the late 90s changed all that.

Anyways, I digress. Suffice it to say, with my prejudice against Macs, the announcement of Apple's upcoming iPhone didn't register with me one bit; I was completely blase about it. How could Apple come up with anything that could outperform the market heavyweights out there? But they did.

You see, in the domain of geekdom, there is such a thing as love at first sight: It's rare, but it happens. That's exactly what occurred to me when a friend offered me his iPhone to examine over lunch. Its sleek, thin and glassy form slid into my palms, and the front panel shone in all it's Super VGA glory without a single phone dial to mar the streamlined silhouette. Such beauty I had never seen, even in the sexiest of Nokias. Oh, but like a sexy vixen unhooking her lingerie, that was just a tease. Using the touch screen LCD to navigate the functions of the iPhone was what gave me a mental orgasm. Needless to say, I rushed out to procure one for myself the very next day.

The marriage of style and substance in this thing is so exemplary, I wonder why the other major cell phone companies with all their limitless R&D budget did not think of it much sooner; like three years ago! First, you have the Wi-Fi connection that allows you to access the internet anywhere with wireless technology installed. And if that should fail, there is always the EDGE technology (GPRS based) as a slower but yet reliable alternative. Using its Safari browser was a dream: filling in forms and choosing options from drop down menus with the GUI was smooth and intuitive. Secondly, the GPS and weather programs that automatically update themselves have proven to be most valuable when you need driving directions or weather forecasts. Last but most definitely not the least, the 8 Gigabyte iPod capacity is the proverbial icing on this cake. Syncing seamlessly with iTunes, the iPhone can download music, images, and videos (mp4 format) from your PC. I spent all weekend sorting out and transferring ALL the music I have EVER liked into this one thin slice of tech heaven. Furthermore, with an option to download free cover art for the songs from the iStore (or elsewhere if you want to do them manually in a drag and drop fashion), the jukebox like GUI (called Flow View I believe) for music playback is just outright sexy.

Of course, the iPhone is not without it's hassles. One of the more obvious flaws is the messaging system, which doesn't allow you to forward messages. That can be quite annoying for someone who enjoys chain spamming their friends' inboxes with dirty jokes on a daily basis. Next, the Bluetooth technology doesn't connect to a majority of other enabled devices (except the hands-free attachment of course), which kinda sucks if you want to send photos to your PC sans the USB cord. Lastly, you need to download additional software to convert mp3 songs to ring tones or large video files to the iPhone friendly mp4 format.

For some, the aforementioned drawbacks can be a deal breaker. For me, it wasn't. I don't like forwarding messages any how. Also, if I need the USB cord to transfer files without the Bluetooth capability, I guess I can live with the slight inconvenience (I hardly take photos with my cell anyways). Lastly, and this is more of an ego thing, it sucks that every one and their pet toads will probably be toting this item in the upcoming months, making this extraordinary gadget commonplace and mundane. Oh never mind, I'll just be the first in line to get the new model when it comes out!

Over and out,

Updated 12-03-2007 at 12:00 AM by InsaneInTheMembrane

Do as I say not as I do