(pt. 2) Even more info on iPhone OS 4 (browsing the new features..) screenshots, issues, problems!?

Continued from previous post…

Though I don’t use the phone features, I did happen to notice a newer feature I hadn’t noticed before… Favorites. You can have favorite people tagged for easy access, though, I don’t really see the point since a directory of your contacts is already there and your fave people are probably under recents anyway, yet here is the favorite feature..

Yep there it is next to Recents <shrug> okay, great. I am sure you know how to use it so I won’t bother, okay, Next.. Settings has received a few updates. I am glad for that because I am in the settings app often.

Apple has a new app, the iTunes store, to make it easier for them to take your money, I mean oops — for you to order stuff from the iTunes store πŸ™‚ You can (FINALLY!) store your login info so you don’t have to go typing in your password each time you turn around, thank goodness! That’s a biggie for me, yay! Thus you have Appstore settings in your Settings app to store said password.

I don’t use photo slideshows much at all, but somewhere along the lines they updated this too, now they have more transitions and stuff to make for a better presentation — that’s cool if you are docked for example and showing off your photo albums on a big screen I gather ..

Same with the iPod feature, you have some new iPod-like options added to the iPhone ( and I assume iPod touch )

This makes it more like my Video iPod, which I appreciate having to use less clicks and gestures to get to the settings I want, so kudos to them for that πŸ™‚

In the (SMS) Messages app, you have additional useful options like preview settings, alerts, and character count which I find most useful for say, twitter.

I used to miss messages then have to go back and look at the app to get them, now it will help me avoid that sort of nonsense. They’ve improved MMS a bit as well but, really that just brings the phone more in line with what everyone else is already doing, sending text and pics to other phones instead of sending people an email anytime you want to share a mobile pic. Congrats on getting up to speed on that one, Apple… still waiting for more bluetooth features, but then with a mostlyΒ  closed OS with limited driver support like iOS, I am not sure how soon that would be in coming… sigh …someday I hope they give us the full set of bluetooth awesomeness that everyone else and their grandma has by now. A bit embarrassing to say the least for a phone that touts itself as cutting edge?

Next up, Safari web browsing, which is the only option for most users out there (even though 3rd party browsers exist, it goes beyond the scope of this blog to go over them just yet).. So… they have done some improvements with Safari and it’s security features, cool cool πŸ™‚ Happy with that …

You can also configure additional mail settings like default notes handler (again, here is gmail listed, LOL which I didn’t know had notes at all!)

Will really have to check into that someday, I wonder if they do notes better than MobileMe? Anyways..quickly will go over some extra goodies with iOS4, for one, you get additional wallpapers for your lock screen (backgrounds don’t seem to work for anything else on iOS4 with iPhone 3G, but here are choices for your lockscreen other than the old clownfish or earth from space etc. by default, you get the “OMG my phone is wet!” pic and several others:

Just for yucks, I thought I would show you what iPhone 3G looks like with an actual custom background in it, in fact I changed the theme and font entirely using Winterboard, this is Saurik’s theme shown here, the background is a set of images which fade between each other at set intervals, much like what Mac OSX does with the desktop:

Neat ah? Now imagine custom themes galore of every imaginable type, colour scheme, etc, some of these are quite good and go as far as changing everything from the font, icons, sounds, dock, the whole ball of wax, while others (like this theme) just change a few things to make your phone look slightly different. Do a google search for Cydia and Winterboard to see some examples of what can be done (and most themes are completely free which is nice, I love Open Source!) You will notice that the new categories/folders aren’t using the custom background, they are merely black, but at least the different font shows up within Winterboard — likely this is just due to the theme being built for OS 3.1.x and not taking into account the new app’s background πŸ˜‰

One more quick thing, and this isn’t really iOS4 itself (it’s Cydia) but it will give you an idea how much of your precious space the new OS takes up on your iPhone (for those that are interested … like me) … hehe:

About a gig’s worth for all the system stuff, granted Cydia adds a few small libraries to this, but most of it is the iPhone iOS4. On the second pie chart we see how much of my actual 16 Gb drive this is taking up… app store apps use 2.4%, other apps and such 1.4%, camera pics which are about 200 or so small jpeg or png screenshots is taking up 1.1%, i currently have nothing from iTunes on the phone at all, planning to use dTunes and other apps instead to do my music and video watching, and free space 95% … the one theme I have installed isn’t even 1% (or less than 10 Mb) which includes a lockscreen, font, 3 backgrounds (two for the main screen and one for the lockscreen), and some dock re-skinning. Well, expected since they are just PNG files at the iPhone 3G’s size of 320×480 pixels.. tiny tiny..

Now, other than the “No sim card installed” message which keeps popping up each morning, when you aren’t connected to the internet and go into the mail app, you will get a flood of warnings about not being able to connect, most of which self-cancel, but it does seem quite annoying that something so basic wasn’t though out and they simply check to see if you are online, then go and check your accounts, but <shrug> this is new software still basically in beta (even though it’s official release and all, even with problems, they wanted to get it out to market and FAST to meet the demand of all those new iPhone 4’s hitting the nations (yes with these and more problems I won’t go into, beyond the scope of this article once again)…..

Where was I?

Oh yeah, issues. Well, no more issues with Apple apps and the iOS4 itself per se, just some of my favorite apps that don’t work, or appear to work then bomb out after some functions are done… #1 — Search … Search doesn’t really work. I have a 3rd party Cydia app or two which search the phone much better, and they dont work with iOS4 yet… #2 — Terminal … for SSH and what not, the Terminal app doesn’t work on iOS4, it’s really a driver problem I won’t go into, it launches and all then closes cleanly without a message. Same with #3 — Cycorder, doesn’t work yet with iOS4 and I really miss it, it was fun to record video on my iPhone 3G and I can’t find a app in the AppStore that does it … #4 — the notes problem, that’s a biggie for me, I like Notes and don’t have a dotmac account anymore, so when I sync to mail they disappear from the phone.. there is a workaround which I am using, yes, but, Apple could have done this somehow more gracefully by storing Notes within iTunes or some such thing, I dunno <shrug>

I talked to the Telus people and they are having all sorts of problems with iPhone 4’s and recommend against me upgrading to it, though they wouldn’t elaborate as to what the issues were, they did give the impression that these were widespread hardware/software issues with the device, and that it was crashing a lot as well.. yes, this right in our local store the gal was terribly unhappy with hers, and it seemed the battery life wasn’t quite what she was expecting even though they supposedly improved it o.O which was surprising for me to hear … maybe the gal had a Blackberry before and was used to their ridiculously long battery life? Who knows..

So, I have decided to dump iOS4 and go back to 3.1.2 which seemed to be a nice stable build of the older iPhone OS..

So, saying a repeated hello to Pwnage tool and ipsw that I stored as a backup πŸ™‚

And I’ll probably mess with Android somewhere, sometime soon, as soon as I get the free time to mess with it , just because I like to see it working and mess with it myself πŸ˜‰ proof of concept.. So, final verdict (as if you didn’t see this coming all along, which I half way did, but didn’t want to buy into it until proven without a doubt…) “Don’t update to iOS4 — YET — unless you really like the new features for your device and it’s worth the instability you may suffer for it… if you are on a production machine and rely on your phone for daily use, I’d say wait until they fix the bugs and come out with iOS4.1 or whatever next major update comes out touting new features and bug fixes to what they started as this iOS4 πŸ˜‰

–StarLord

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