iPhone 3GS: More in depth review.

In my last post, located here, I provided my initial iPhone 3GS thoughts. Well after having used the iPhone 3GS for two weeks, I thought I would share my thoughts about the new hardware.

Battery life on the iPhone 3GS is definitely worse than on the iPhone 3G. I think there are a couple of factors that are causing this issue. The first is Location services. I know that the iPhone 3G had location services, however with Push notifications, a compass, and applications that have Location services built in, the battery life take a major hit.

I struggled to determine what the primary cause for such battery life was until I looked at AIM and noticed that it was transmitting my location to my friends EVERY five minutes. Well, that was a lightbulb that decided to light itself after I found the setting. Needless to say I have changed that to only determine my location upon startup. For me, that was the biggest culprit.

Another one of the new features is the video camera built in. I have taken a few videos and, as one would expect, it does drain the battery more so than regular usage. However the video is not horrible by any stretch of the imagination. No, this isn’t something that you would necessarily want to publish on broadcast television (although these days it seems like any video, even 320 x 240 can make it onto television) but it is good enough to take home movies for a special event. Plus, you do not have to carry about another piece of equipment, it’s right there in your pocket. I would like to see the ability to turn on 720p with the caveat that it will drain battery even quicker. At that point a Mophie Juice pack might not be a bad investment.

The speed within the 3GS is significantly faster. This is shown most assuredly when I updated both my iPhone 3GS and my iPhone 3G with 12 application updates. The iPhone 3GS finished updating 4 minutes faster than the iPhone 3G. When the iPhone 3G was started before the iPhone 3GS.

The final aspect that I want to cover is the screen. I didn’t cover this in my initial review but I have definitely noticed that the screen does not attract nearly as many fingerprints as the previous iPhones. The new Oleophobic screen does not allow nearly as many fingerprints to stay on the screen. I have definitely noticed that I do not have to clean the screen nearly as often. This makes it easier for maintenance. The yellow tint that I had mentioned is less noticeable, but it is definitely still present.

Overall the iPhone 3GS has been quite a good experience. Particularly since there are fewer slowdowns when typing and the overall experience is more positive. Now if I could only get better 3G coverage with AT&T. I know this is ‘supposed’ to be coming by the end of 2009 by AT&T upgrading their 850 MHz spectrum to 3G speeds, but I’d like to see this happen faster. We won’t even go into tethering…

I'm into everything technology related, particularly anything Apple related. I enjoy programming and tend to lean towards server-based technologies over client-based. You can contact me on twitter, via e-mail, or follow me on friendfeed.