I doubt very much that I am suggesting anything new here. But there are two areas that I fee Apple is a bit out of touch with the market:
iPhone Keyboard is a required offering.
I Believe the iPhone is one feature away from dominating the Enterprise AND the consumer space for smartphones/micro PCs. Steve needs to back down on his touch only mantra and design a real keyboard that slides out underneath the entire phone (a la Sony Xperia or these concepts). Apple has created a new market and ecosystem for these usable small computers that people can lean on for most of their personal personal computing. Whats missing is a real keyboard.
Witness the thousands of teens glued to their QWERTY text messaging hardware or Blackberries. Teens are the sweet spot for Apple’s consumer strategy. In the enterprise, to satisfy the needs of the QWERTY addicted and really impress the large enterprises about the fact the iPhone is a true portable productivity tool, they need to build something that actually works the without any education. Ironically, I think the iPhone keypad is one of the only things Apple has designed in a few years that requires a lot of knowledge to use properly. Now I love my iphone, but I definitely catch myself doing less mobile mail on it due to the cludgyness of the keyboard for my hands. I prefer SMS because it allows me to be less formal and I dont have to type as much. I belive this is a lost opportunity for Apple and they need to listen to users on this one.
We need an Apple NetBook (NetMac?) yesterday…
The Hackintosh meme has left the station and its only going to get more momentum. I and many others will likely buy a sub $400 netbook and install OSX in the coming 6 months. Personally, I need a commuting machine and the Air is overpriced for what I need. I want somethign small to throw into a bag that I can pound out mail on the train. I also would likely use this machine for travel and weekends, rather than bringing my larger desktop laptop. Since the MobileMe sync services are working so well, it really doesn’t matter what machine I am on…everything on every machine should theoretically sync. Its working for me today on the multiple machines I use. Apple is a design company, and they design great hardware. The netbook is an opportunity to do something that is uniquely Apple and a lower cost. I believe, like the iPhone/iPod, the Apple experience on a netbook will create a great channel to recruit new converts. That and I don’t want to write a check to Dell…
What do you think…are they getting these things ready or are they going to ignore the market and push everything into the new multi-touch technology (including a netbook)??
This is a really nicely produced piece MSFT did about what they believe the future will look like, conveniently including the use of future software and haptic technologies.
What’s funny about this video is that all the UIs in the video imply that in the future, Microsoft will have had some pretty serious changes of thought about the emphasis on great design. I would venture a guess that most of the concept UIs in this piece were created by designers not engineers.
I look forward a future when good design has a more strategic role in burying complexity to make our lives mote productive.
Is it me or does this product android shot from Uncle Walt’s blog look suspiciously like a Microsoft IE browser? It looks like someone, (not Google) hacked something up and used a windows browser.
If T-Mobile did this screen shot, they are off to a rocky start with the Goog!
Wow. If I were a brand manager at Apple, I would not be happy. Seems Orange is paying people to wait in line at their stores to generate false interest in the iPhone.
Jobs & Co will likely respond. Non-genuine behavior is antithetical to the Apple brand and damages its authenticity. Apple doesn’t have to fake it. If Orange is suffering from lack of demand, it might be that they are overcharging for the wireless plans and people already know about it?
short answer: The keyboard and lack of push email.
long answer: While on the road recently, I was forced to use the email functions in the iphone more than I had in the past. The vertical mail keyboard is too narrow for my big hands and often the predictive software slows down the process of writing a quick email. The lack of feedback from the screen hurts here. I also get really annoyed by the constant delays in response do to client server communications. The “typewriter” effect seems to jam up like the very machines they are emulating!
solution: as a temporary fix, they need to let the keyboard go horizontal in the mail app. This will lessen mistakes and speed up the use of the keyboard and lower reliance on the predictive software.
The long term fix is to use a slider with a real keyboard like the latest sony device or some of the LG units.
Knowing how Ive and Jobs solve problems, my thought is that the next gen of the hardware may have some sort of integrated (well designed!) keyboard that makes interacting with text more intuitive. When the speeds promised in the 3G handsets reaches ubiquity a solid input interface will be critical to the iPhones market penetration. Apple will have to eat humble pie (or come up with a phenomenal voice entry solution!)
Most of you that have had the device for a while now and are heavy users have probably found these same issues. Let us know what you think.