Dennis D. McDonald (ddmcd@outlook.com) is an independent consultant located in Alexandria Virginia. His services and capabilities are described here. Application areas include project, program, and data management; market assessment, digital strategy, and program planning; change and content management; social media; and, technology adoption. Follow him on Google+. He also publishes on CTOvision.com and aNewDomain.

Personal Experience with the iPhone 4s

By Dennis D. McDonald

I’ve been using an iPhone 4s for almost 4 months now. Before that I had a dumbphone and for a time a Blackberry that I found very useful while traversing between home and client offices in DC.

I’m very pleased at how useful the iPhone has proven to be. While I’m certainly an advocate of mobile technologies I think that the personal experience has been fairly profound. Voice calls, email, messaging, and web access work like a charm. Since certain 20-something members of my family prefer texting the ease with which this done has been significant. I also enjoy Siri and still find it amusing I can ask a question like “What time does the sun rise today?” and get an answer almost immediately.

Generally, I’m very impressed with how well designed apps operate. The processing power and limited screen size of the portable technology seems to have forced developers to simplify and focus on what’s most important. I find myself enjoying even Linkedin’s app with its stripped down functionality. It’s not unusual to find myself when I go back to a browser based application from a smartphone app I’m struck by the messiness and clutter, despite the added functionality. 

One thing that had me worried initially was the impact of going from a computer (I have a laptop and a 22” monitor in my office) to such a small screen. In the past I required reading glasses for close work in addition to my old contact lenses. When I got the iPhone I also got new contact lenses. These removed the need for reading glasses even with the small screen.

I find that with the quality of the iPhone display I have no problems at all in using the interface. In most cases the display quality and detail are well suited to the task. This seems partly due to the quality of the iPhone display and partly, again, I think, to the targeted focus of individual apps that push content front and center.

One thing I didn’t expect was the Bluetooth sync with our car. I now use the iPhone instead of my old iPod for listening to music and podcasts and discovered quite by accident that the audio from the iPhone gets pumped automatically through my car speakers. That’s neat.

If I had to say what’s my favorite I’d say it’s the Kindle app. Carrying a book around all the time is very convenient. I’f I’m stuck waiting for something I can read. I’ve taken advantage of this app not only by buying books from Amazon but also for borrowing ebooks through my local public library here in Alexandria Virginia.

One more thing: I’ve followed with interest all the rumors swirling around the possibility of a larger iPhone or a smaller iPad. I have mixed feeling about this. A larger screen in some cases might be nice but I really like that the iPhone is small and light enough to fit in my front shirt pocket. As long as the display is so good I think I’ll stick with small and light.  

Copyright (c) 2012 by Dennis D. McDonald

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