Saturday, January 13, 2007

Reinventing the phone..

I'm not a die-hard gizmo man and I do think many times before I buy any consumer electronic goods.

As I have experienced,once in a while comes few things which can shake this whole mentality.It happened last time when that mind-boggling sleek portable music player came into market and how excited we were to get one of those. Apple got rewarded richly for being innovative and that product was called 'iPod'.

Apple every year conducts events such as Macworld Expo and Apple Expo. The highlight of this event will be the 'Stevenote'.It is the slang term for Keynote addresses by Apple CEO, Steve Jobs. Steve is known for his vibrant speaking style and manner of exciting a crowd, particularly during his speeches at Macworld conferences. He usually wears a black long-sleeved shirt, blue jeans, and sneakers. Most new Apple product releases are first shown to the public in this keynote addresses by Steve Jobs.

Before every 'Stevenote', there will be tremendous buzz about what Apple is coming up or which product Steve is going to reveal. iPod was one such product which was revealed in one such Stevenote. So this year it was time for 'Stevenote' and rumors were high about a revolutionary new product Apple is going to launch and Steve didn't disappoint.

Apple introduced 'iPhone'.

I must confess I was totally blown away by its looks. The iPhone looks gorgeous.But when I heard its technical features, there was no way to escape from its charisma.

What folks in Apple did was they combined three different devices - a revolutionary mobile phone, a wide screen iPod with touch controls and a internet communication device with desktop-class e-mail,web browsing & maps. They bundled all these three devices into one small and ligthweight device.

But the best part about iPhone is that there are no physical keys on the phone ! That means the entire mobile phone is a screen. So how do you dial the numbers ? Use the touch screen keyboard and if number is stored then by pointing the finger at a name on the list.

One more striking feature is the 'Visual Voicemail'. If you have voice mail enabled in your phone, then you know the pain of going through of every voicemails in a sequential order.The iPhone eliminates all this and you can pick the voice mail you want from the list!

Now to viewing photos in the phone.You can zoom in & out the photos using fingers.Set any picture as wallpaper and sent it by email all by touch.

Using the built-in Safari browser, you can browse the internet and use mails.With built-in Google maps you can view maps and satellite images or get directions and traffic information

Some high technology talks now. iPhone supports GSM,EDGE,Wi-Fi and Bluetooth.It has acceralometer which detects when you rotate from portrait to landscape.The proximity sensor detects when you lift the phone near to you ears and turn off the display and ambient light sensor automatically adjust the light settings.

And finally you can do the same things you can do with iPod.Play audio songs and videos.

Apple has announced the price of 4-GB iPhone to be $499 and 5-GB iPhone to be $599.But the iPhones will be available only in April,2007 in US and in Asia it will be only in 2008.

Apple had maintained so much secrecy about this product that even for 2 years when this project was going on, nobody was clear about what Apple is into. Even its partners in this project, Cingular,Yahoo and Google were not aware of. Only few in Apple knew it and it was the tightly guarded secret.

So will iPhone is going to take the mobile market by storm. Very early days and difficult to predict.But the way, Wall mart responded on announcement of iPhone was warming.The Apple stocks rose within minutes. On other end, Apple's iPhone was welcomed by a law suite from Cisco which apparently has the 'iPhone' trademark registered.

Few are questioning the pricing kept for iPhone saying $499 is too much compared to any other mobile available in market, even if iPhone offers too many things.But I feel the price will not be a factor as we had seen with iPod. When iPod was introduced with $199 and above price, everybody said why would people buy a music player which is 3-4 times costlier than any available players.Then we know how iPod had stunned everyone.I feel samething is going to happen with iPhone.

A long way to go, lets sit back and wait for iPhone to arrive

Oh ! by the way, congrats on the new name - 'Apple Inc' .
(Earlier it was 'Apple Computer Inc ' and they removed 'Computer' from their name)

Over to Steve and Apple...