Today, I managed to install iPhone OS 3.0 on my iPhone 3G after a little trouble.
The download process went smooth, but the trouble started after iTunes began to prepare the iPhone for the software update. It failed… twice. Error 1604. I was directed to the following page each time:
I restarted my computer to no avail. My iPhone was staring at me with a black face, and the backlight was going strong. I was slightly worried, but I remembered going through my iTunes folders a few days before. I navigated to the directory containing my iPhone 2.2.1 restore file and double-clicked on it. It started the restore process. A half-hour later, my iPhone was restored to factory settings and was re-activated. iTunes prompted me to download new carrier settings from my iPhone carrier (Rogers) and asked me if I wanted to restore from backup. Next, I was prompted to restore from a recent iPhone backup and was good to go. However, the software restore didn’t go as planned…
I noticed a new Voice Memos icon on the iPhone. Right then, I knew it was running 3.0 instead of 2.2.1. I was a little puzzled. Even though I double-clicked on the 2.2.1 restore file, iTunes decided to use the 3.0 software (in the same folder) for the restore. Hey, I’m not complaining. It worked perfectly, and all my contacts and applications are available for use.
Since the Apple iPhone 3G made its debut in Canada approximately two months ago, it has become one of the best selling smartphones of all time.
I was initially wary of purchasing the iPhone due to the exorbitant data fees being charged, but I managed to get a 6 GB promotional data plan for $30/month from Rogers Wireless. I’m currently using 2.5% (or 150 MB) of my monthly data quota. As you can see, I overestimated my data usage by a long shot :-). Going to a cheaper data plan doesn’t make sense, as it only gives me 250 MB for $5 less now. In fact, Rogers recently stated that 90% of their data customers use less than 500 MB per month. As most of my data plan is going to waste, I wish I could share my data plan with my family, but Rogers doesn’t offer such an option at this time.
What’s there to like about the Apple iPhone 3G? The touch interface. The sleek form factor. WiFi connectivity. The ability to select and install hundreds of applications. Easy firmware upgrades.
There’s also a few negatives: occassional dropped calls, dismal battery life at times (improved with 2.1 firmware), random reboots (had one today!), non user replaceable battery and a few other gripes.
So, what do I use my iPhone for? In no particular order: email, financial market quotes, social networking, finding things and managing Linux servers.
A list of my favorite iPhone applications follows:
Bloomberg — offers updated financial market quotes, including commodities and currencies.
Facebook — iPhone interface for the popular social networking site.
Movies — view movie listings for theatres in your area; view trailers and showtimes.
UrbanSpoon — Use this to find a restaurant near you. Needs more cities added.
Locly — find nearby establishments and local events.
fring — connect with your IM buddies and make VOIP calls over Skype.
eBay — track and manage your eBay auctions. Search for items.
iSSH — manages SSH connections to my servers for remote diagnosis. $2.99.
Palringo — similar to fring, but no Skype support. I like the MSN interface they use.
Shazam — hear a tune you like on the radio? This app tells you the name and artist.
Units — great for unit conversion and limited currency conversion.
AirSharing — transfer files to your iPhone over WiFi. Share files with your buddies.
Leave a comment with your favorite iPhone apps.