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iPhone Smackdown

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Apple's new iPhone G3 is earning praise from some music fans for its ability to let you listen to live radio, identify songs you hear or even hum, and build playlists of favorite artists or genres. But there's also a growing backlash from iPhone haters who argue that it's all a bunch of marketing hype. Today: a no-holds-barred iPhone debate with Wendy Sheehan Donnell, Senior Editor at PC Magazine, and Steven Levy, Senior Writer at Wired Magazine.

Our blog: John Schaefer on the iPhone 3G


Wendy Sheehan Donnell, and Steven Levy

Comments [34]

Jack from Brooklyn

FWIW, the intro to this entry reads:
"Apple's new iPhone G3 is earning praise ... "

It should be iPhone 3G; G3s are old Apple CPUs that are over 10 years old.

Jul. 29 2008 03:03 PM
Shana from Brooklyn

To comment 7 - there was a report out a couple years ago that listed Apple toward the bottom of electronics manufacturers for environmental concerns. Since then there has been talk of possible improvements, which you can read at

My question about the environmental impact though, which was not well addressed on the show, is that I was asking for a little reflection on the high cost of the constant replacement of these now ubiquitous devices. What happens to all of the electronics waste that is created when so many people are purchasing new iphones, ipods, imacs, nanos, etc, then replacing these devices with new ones as soon as the next one comes out. And if the company creating these products (so heavily marketed on wnyc) is using components that are even more toxic than most electronics, that is worth considering as well.

Jul. 29 2008 02:52 PM
David from Brooklyn

Regarding Apple and the environment:,-Apple-clash-over-toxic-waste/2100-1014_3-6110513.html

And the article doesn't even get into Apple's planned obsolescence generating tons of waste as people throw out their broken icrap for the newest model.

Jul. 29 2008 02:52 PM
Jack from Brooklyn

Okay, seriously all of the people saying that Noki and Treo phones do the same things—and have done them for years—the reality is it has nothing to do with features, but ease of use.

I personally like my Motorola RAZR, but I don't use it deeply mainly because the software and user interface is wretched.

It's the difference between giving a pile of the same ingredients to a chef and someone who doesn't really know what they are doing. It's the way it all comes together. And for the iPod it just works better.

Jul. 29 2008 02:38 PM
Ali from Manhattan

I’m tired of people in the media calling all other smart phones iPhone wannabe’s. I have a Helio Ocean and love love love it! If you are unfamiliar with this device check out the link and get familiar.

Jul. 29 2008 02:35 PM

using opera mini on my blackberry, I can load fully fomatted websites and when the blackberry bold comes out with an even better screen than the iphone, it will be amazingly better because it will have a real keyboard not a touchscreen.

Jul. 29 2008 02:35 PM
Eric from Brooklyn

uh... try a Blackberry.

mail, internet, sms, 3rd party apps, copy and paste, blah blah blah.

iPhones have a big screen, but blackberries are about half the price ... and none of the snob factor

Jul. 29 2008 02:35 PM
jayme from new york

what about AT&T and FISA? I don't want an iPhone cause it only works on AT&T.

Jul. 29 2008 02:35 PM
Adam from Columbus,OH

Saying that the Iphone is changing the landscape of the mobile world is a joke. Nokia has had their N series out for years. With MANY different options, from video recording to even streaming your movies from your home pc over WiFi. Even the N95 has options for an 8gig hard drive, and a 5mp camera. The price isn't a cheap for us here because NONE of the cell companies can make the $ back like they do on the Iphone.

Jul. 29 2008 02:35 PM
Ayanna from Brooklyn, NY

My husband has an iphone. It is great. We went to a barbeque this weekend, and I was able to use his phone to get my favorite sangria recipe from the web and prepare it at our friends' house and it was so easy, not like my crappy blackberry. As soon as my current verizon contract runs out, I'm getting an iphone.

By the way, who the heck uses camera phones and all that other useless crap that comes with other phones? The ease of use on the iphone is waaaay more important.

Jul. 29 2008 02:34 PM
Jack from Brooklyn

I like the iPhone because it means my favorite model of iPod (the Shuffle) is cheaper than ever.

Jul. 29 2008 02:34 PM
Theo Coulombe from Brooklyn

My biz partner and I have had our iphones' for a year and it has absolutely stream lined or ability to to coordinate and attend to our clients.

We love e'm

Jul. 29 2008 02:31 PM
Bob Galli from Edison, NJ

I bought after the 1st price reduction. The phone works well, there have been several updates (including triangulation/location) along with the 'massive' and complete redo to version 2.0 with the introduction of the G3. I use many functions - e-mail, stock market updates, internet (extremely handy when shoping and price comparing) - and the 1st gen is made with a metal, not plastic case. I'm not interested in 'unlocking' - I've been an AT&T, Cingular, AT&T user for decades. Oh yes - I download a lot of NPR podcasts (Wait, Wait, Sunday Puzzle, Car Talk, etc.) and listen while on the road, or wherever. I also downloaded the movie Ratatouli (sp?) and found it OK to watch on the phone as well as on my screen. I like it a lot and would buy another. (Oh yeah - not concerned with the GPS function but use it to find places - I've been a Garmin fan for years from flying to driving).

Thanks and regards,

Jul. 29 2008 02:31 PM
Jon P. from Hewitt, NJ

Steve (the other one)

Money magazine had an article about Steve Jobs that pointed out Apple is the dirtiest computer maker out there when it comes to making a green computer. They also pointed out that Steve Jobs donates nothing to charity. I’m not a Microsoft fan but how much has Bill Gates donated of his own money?

Jul. 29 2008 02:31 PM
Sean from Brooklyn

That is not true there are allot of really good phones out there. Just not in this country.

Jul. 29 2008 02:30 PM
paul from manhattan

i wonder if some of those issues like cut and paste and pictures in text messages will be solved in future software updates, like 3.0, or will it require another hardware upgrade?

Jul. 29 2008 02:30 PM

I desperately want an iPhone but am not yet willing to drop the service of my current carrier, which is much more reliable than AT&T's service.

Sadly, in the US, we are forced to choose cool, cutting edge equipment (ATT, T-Mobile) with rotten service, or better service (Verizon, Sprint) with clunky phones.

Jul. 29 2008 02:30 PM
Enrique from Elizabeth NJ

...if you unlock it, you get apps
that would let you use it as a recording camera.
-among several other applications-

I have them :P

Jul. 29 2008 02:29 PM
Leonardo Andres

How about sound check start doing this weekly for other devices other than an apple product? then maybe i would think you dont have some fanboyism at wnyc.

Jul. 29 2008 02:28 PM
Joel from Brooklyn

I have a first generation iPhone that I bought...yes for $599 in June 2007. I still love my iPhone - and it really has just gotten better with the new software capabilities rolled out in iPhone OS 2.0 - although Apple does has some software kinks to work out.

The name iPhone is such a misnomer because I really use it more as a mobile computing and internet device - something I could never do with previous smartphones I've had.

And the software integration of the iPhone with my computer is a major selling point of the device. Most of my other phones never really synced with my computer's calendar and contacts easily, not to mention the media files I might want to transfer to the device.

The iPhone is a great device because it is the first to truly get all of its functional elements working as tools I actually use on a day to day basis, not simply as specifications on paper that really don't function well.

My wish list...
The camera does need improvement - wish it were better (it's poor at capturing in low light and there's no flash) and captured video.

Wish my iPhone 2.5G had better/louder sounding speakers.

Wish it had MMS capability.

Wish the storage was more capacious.

Jul. 29 2008 02:28 PM
Brennan Cavanaugh from manhattan

Though we can see websites on the iPhone, there is no Flash, so many media sites cannot be accessed. Lots of chatter but no Adobe friendship with Apple yet....WHEN?

Jul. 29 2008 02:27 PM
John from Bklyn

Isn't this supposed to be a music show?

Jul. 29 2008 02:27 PM
Sam from Stamford, CT

Why does the iPhone deserve a "hate-fest" or even a smack-down?

No, we iPhone fans don't claim that it's the end all and be all.

You can't deny though, that the iPhone changes the game in the cell phone business. While many others technically have the capability, do you know of *any* other cell phone out there that has people actually using the internet on them?

Apple is not "all hype and marketing". There might just be something better about this thing, no?

Jul. 29 2008 02:22 PM
Jon P. from Hewitt, NJ

I’m working on the I-idiot. It works with the Iphone for all the people that waited in line for more then 5 minutes to buy a $200 glorified walkman that has a built in cell phone….

Jul. 29 2008 02:20 PM
Aaron Angel from Brooklyn

woops- sorry Soterios (correct spelling)

Jul. 29 2008 02:18 PM
Leonardo Andres

So this is basically a long commercial for an iphone? I am tired of apple, it might be a good product but it is more hype than anything else. If every other good device got some much press they would also be in par with the sales of the iphone.

Jul. 29 2008 02:18 PM
Aaron Angel from Brooklyn

satirious does not sound normal! i dont know about the sound quality?

Jul. 29 2008 02:17 PM
Steve (the other one) from Manhattan

Shana - where did you read that?

I'm putting more RAM onto my first generation G5 so I can get another 2 years out of it. I like the idea that I can have one Mac for 5 years instead of 2 crap Dells.

Jul. 29 2008 02:17 PM
Steve (the other one) from Manhattan

This is funny:

Jul. 29 2008 02:15 PM
Sean from Brooklyn

The whole problem is that Apple is not such a great company for the customer.

Jul. 29 2008 02:12 PM
Shana from Brooklyn

Will you talk about the environmental impact of the technological waste created by all of these constantly evolving iproducts? I have read that apple is one of the most toxic electronics producers.

Jul. 29 2008 02:11 PM
Josh from East Village

Though Apple is marketing around a $199 price a sizable number of people don't qualify for that price.

I was told, after waiting an hour like a moron on a July afternoon in soho, that I, as a current At&T customer, didn't qualify for the "upgrade price." Fine, I thought, $200 seems reasonable to me.

Nyet! $200 IS the upgrade price! And if you've bought a phone from AT&T in the past 12 months the only price they'll give you is $399 and $499 [$200 more than the marketed price].

Thanks Guys. Thanks Steve.

Don't look at me when someone trashes the Apple Soho store bathroom.

Jul. 29 2008 02:11 PM
Sean from Brooklyn

I am waiting for android googles little monster.

Jul. 29 2008 02:09 PM
Oy Yev from Brooklyn

iDontCare. Im waiting for the iGore, a back hunch that plays music. I hope the iSheep enoy their new iProduct.

Jul. 29 2008 02:03 PM

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