iPhoneThe failure of one of our aging Windows Mobile PDA phones has prompted a review of what to get instead, and is an opportune time to consider the iPhone, despite (and because of) the religious fervor surrounding it.

At first touch, the screen is wonderful, the method of zooming and compressing first class. But I started to wonder why the buttons were so big, and why list programs were never in small font, and realized that it cannot work with a stylus. (Googling has revealed some attempts at these). I presume those using programs like OmniFocus (and word processors — such as they are) must be zooming in and back out all the time as they edit.

And digital art must lose its spontaneity, if drawing requires expansion of the canvas so that a finger width translates back to a thin line. It is such a shame that this beautiful screen responds only to a blunt tool.

The array of icons on the home screen, and the limited number of lines displayed in many programs, together with the beautiful physical form, reminds me of the Palm V, which I loved in an earlier era.

I would guess that in the ensuing battle, Apple will play Palm to Google's Microsoft.

Admittedly there are many who have benefited from the design - I have received photos "sent from my iPhone" from sources not known to be geeks in the past. But for us, multiple application users, I think we will stay with Windows Mobile, staying with the creaky system that has done us well since the days of Palm, living with near daily "soft resets". Now the TouchFlo HD looks nice…

If I am about to miss my chance of Nirvana please put me right — I'm feeling almost guilty as I think of the joyous hordes around the Apple "Temple" on Regent Street.


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