Thursday, September 3, 2009

Got Tech? : Smartphone Overload

While it shouldn't be a surprise, the iPhone, like the BlackBerry and other smartphones is ultimately just that -- a phone. Using a BB, one is aware of the wait in accessing internet sites. While you feel you are using this miraculous computing device, computing power in the palm of your hand, you are actually using, a remote control device that is accessing/operating a computing device at a distance. The occasional convenience of being able to find a map or a movie or check your email or blog on the go is marvelous, but it can be slow as molasses and isn't (as far as I can tell) intended to be a multi-tasking device. Have Smartphones in general been oversold as a wonder device ? Especially since, while they truly have so much potential, especially the iPhone and its slew of cool apps, these smartphones still appear to be prisoners of the current technology as far as wireless telephony goes. An article in today's Times discusses the limits -- and frustrations -- of this technology.
-Brooklyn Beat

NY TIMES: Customers Angered as iPhones Overload AT&T By JENNA WORTHAM

Slim and sleek as it is, the iPhone is really the Hummer of cellphones.

It’s a data guzzler. Owners use them like minicomputers, which they are, and use them a lot. Not only do iPhone owners download applications, stream music and videos and browse the Web at higher rates than the average smartphone user, but the average iPhone owner can also use 10 times the network capacity used by the average smartphone user.

“They don’t even realize how much data they’re using,” said Gene Munster, a senior securities analyst with Piper Jaffray.

The result is dropped calls, spotty service, delayed text and voice messages and glacial download speeds as AT&T’s cellular network strains to meet the demand. Another result is outraged customers.

Cellphone owners using other carriers may gloat now, but the problems of AT&T and the iPhone portend their future. Other networks could be stressed as well as more sophisticated phones encouraging such intense use become popular, analysts say.


Details here: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/09/03/technology/companies/03att.html?hp

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