iPhone 4: Is it worth it?

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iPhone 4

Well, my pre-ordered iPhone 4 arrived this morning and after cutting up my T-Mobile SIM (and trimming it to get the contacts to be in the correct place) got it registered and synced up.

So, was it actually worth upgrading from the 3G to the 4?

Well, iOS4 on the 3G is a bit sluggish at times, probably due to having to page so much in and out of its tiny 128MB of RAM (as opposed to the 512MB in the 4). The screen on the 4 is very much better to view, but the 3G was usable. Oh, and I could reliably crash the 3G by downloading the iOS4 manual PDF in Safari and then trying to transfer it to iBook. After about 30 seconds the phone resets.

Also, the iBook app is a little flaky, as quite often it will say that a resource isn’t available when trying to open a book and close the book again. It can take several attempts to open it.

Of all the other stuff in the 3, the sensors are the biggest addition (as well as the uprated camera system, but this isn’t much of a draw for me). It allows me to use Pocket Universe the way it’s meant to be. Also, the GPS location system is far more rapid. Instead of about a minute or more to find the location, it’s now almost instantaneous.

The device is very fast (at least for now).

So, are there any bugs or ‘features” on the 4?

Yes, the biggest “feature” is that if you hold the left-hand side of the phone the mobile signal decreases markedly. This does not happen if you hold your hand around the case, only if you touch it. So, I think my first purchase will be a “bumper” case. Nothing else comes to mind so far.

[Update 25th June]

I can say without dubt that the new iPhone 4 has a far better battery life than the 3G. So far, with WiFi, Bluetooth and 3G enabled and with e-mail polling every 15 minutes only 3% of the battery charge is being used an hour. That means that even with this load the phone can survive for ~30 hours on a charge. With just GPRS, no polling and the other wireless services turned off I can believe the claim of 10 days stand-by time claimed, equalling the Handspring Treo 600. Well done Apple, a decent battery life at last.

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