Every consumer survey out there ranks the iPhone as the bestest phone on the market, putting the Palm Pre and Android phones to shame. True. I love my iPhone. It is from far the best device I have ever owned. However, there is still room for improvement.
I read an article on eWeek today titled “10 things we’re still missing from the iPhone”. It’s really spot on and I’d like to share with you what these missing features are, and my take on what Apple needs to implement in the next iPhone, both in terms of hardware and software.
1. Enterprise Features
The iPhone is not business friendly. When people ask me what type of phone they should get, I always tell them that if they want to use it for business then they should get a BlackBerry. If they want a cool phone to do everything but work, then get an iPhone. The iPhone doesn’t even allow you to save your attachments. How can that work for any business person out there?
It’s not that the iPhone can’t handle multitasking, it’s just that Apple doesn’t want you to have it. Why? Probably so they can include it in the next iPhone and get you to buy the newer model. Fortunately, there are some alternatives (Backgrounder + MultiFlow).
3 . Physical Keybard
A touch screen is great, but a physical keyboard is better. There is no way Apple will ever add a physical keyboard to the iPhone, but one can dream, right?
4. Open Source
Just like the physical keyboard, this will never happen. Apple became successful by and for its closed platform and this is not going to change.
5. Friendly Developer Rules
Many iPhone devs are fleeing the App Store, but even more are getting in, sometimes lured by the myth of easy and quick money. The App Store is still young and Apple still has a lot to learn. The problem is Apple is not a team player but hopefully they will figure out soon that communicating can go a long way when dealing with the developers that make your platform the success it is.
6. Interchangeable Batteries
Who hasn’t complained about the poor battery life of his/her iPhone? The iPhone has a very poor battery life and yes, a removable battery would be great. Somehow I don’t think it’s going to happen though. If like me, your iPhone battery sucks, read my 18 tips to improve your battery life.
7. VoIP over 3G
Apple (or AT&T?) doesn’t want you to use your VoIP apps such as Skype or even Google Voice (which got rejected) over 3G because it would be most likely clog the network. If your iPhone is jailbroken, you do have the option to bypass these restrictions…
8. Multiple Carriers
So far, Apple has an exclusivity with AT&T and not everyone is happy about that. In Europe, it seems that the end of iPhone exlusivity means boosted sales for Apple. We can hope to see Apple ends its exclusive agreement with AT&T and make the iPhone available on other carriers (most likely T-Mobile).
9. Removable Storage
I don’t think this is a must-have feature but it’s always a nice one to have. Instead of adding removable storage (ie SD card), I think Apple should allow you to use your iPhone as a hard drive, which it kinda does in a cumbersome way so far. An easier way is to use this hack to set up your iPhone as a USB drive.
10. Some Serious Competition
Probably the most insteresting point of all is the lack of competition to Apple’s supremacy. No real competition means that Apple can basically do whatever they want as they are in no rush to release all the features we might want. In the end, you are the big loser. A serious rival to the iPhone would most likely make Apple give us more of what we need (ie. the 9 points above).
Would you add anything to this list? What feature would you like to see implemented in the next iPhone?