About 13 percent of our respondents said that they’d run into at least one significant problem with their device in the past month. The most common culprit: the battery.
"It is a fantastic device," raves one iPhone owner. "Way beyond my old Treo 700W, which almost seems like an antique rotary phone by comparison. The iPhone is the first and only truly integrated communicator." An overwhelming majority (88 percent) of the survey’s nearly 500 respondents rated themselves as very or extremely satisfied with their new phone.
We asked iPhone owners what features Apple should add to the next generation of the device. Several of their suggestions echo observations that we and our colleagues at Macworld have made. Some note wryly that, so far, the iPhone can’t replace every handheld device in the house. "It can’t open my garage door, or change the TV channel, yet," one reader joked.
The iPhone’s inability to perform basic editing tasks such as copying, cutting, and pasting irked some users. Others pointed to the phone’s incapacity to handle voice dialing and its refusal to load third-party software. One iPhone owner wished for "true third-party applications (vs. Web-based applications) provided that they will not compromise stability or security."
Our poll respondents also took the opportunity to lambaste the phone for its lack of customization options–including custom ring tones–and for the absence of picture messaging, a to-do list, video recording, flash video support, and integrated instant messaging. One reader especially yearned for a way to change the widgets on the iPhone’s home screen: "I don’t care about Stocks or YouTube, but I do want to be able to turn Wi-Fi on or off in one click."
Several readers complained about the iPhone camera’s not having zoom capability and said that the camera produced poor images in low light. Even more of them griped about battery life issues and the fact that users can’t replace the battery themselves.
Lots of respondents called for support for a faster, 3G data network in the second-generation iPhone, along with more storage, a push e-mail capability, and wireless downloads of iTunes content. One owner asked for games designed for the phone and not dependent on an Internet connection–a valid point if you want to use your phone while traveling and don’t have an available connection, or if you just don’t want to play a game over a slow EDGE connection.
Many respondents wished for integrated GPS. One iPhone owner suggested that the iPhone should at least have "a basic cell tower-based GPS that integrates with Google Maps so it knows where I am when I search for services."
Another frequent gripe involved the phone’s lack of PDA-like functions. Respondents would like to have wider address book support, Microsoft Exchange and Lotus Notes compatibility, and better contacts options.
Many users said that they take heart in knowing that some of the first-generation’s iPhone’s shortcomings may be addressed via software updates (the first update
went out last week).
"Ninety-nine percent of the things that I would like to see are software: A well-balanced set of features that do everything that a PDA or regular phone would do–only better. That is what will define and, at the same time, make or break the iPhone," said one owner.