Product Type: Apple Smartphone
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Best phone I have ever owned (and I've owned a lot of phones!)
iPhone 3GS 8GB
Member Name: liz3yy
iPhone 3GS 8GB
Date: 01/01/12, updated on 07/01/12 (61 review reads)
Advantages: Does it all in one handy package
Disadvantages: A little bulky and heavy to hold
Until recently I have had a standard mobile phone and an iPod Touch. I have grown to live my life on my iPod and have slowly over the past few months started to wish it had phone and text capacities too. Having something that included everything in one package was I realised the way to go.
My mind was finally made up last week when a friend came to stay just after Xmas. She had an iPhone 3 and was besotted with it. I had a play with it and after hearing my friends testimonial decided I had to have one too....only however if I could find a good deal, onto the internet I headed to see what was available.
After only a hours search online I found the best possible deal I could via way of the Carphone Warehouse. £15 per month with T-Mobile, this included the 8gb iPhone for free too. Convinced this was too good to be true we all trooped over to our local branch to see if the deal was still available and whether I could have the phone there and then. Luckily for me they had one left in stock and I passed a credit check with no issues whatsoever.
I am therefore the proud owner of a free iPhone 3GS (8GB) ok the phone isn't technically free as I have to pay £15 per month for a 24 month contract, but I do get 50 texts and 50 calls per month for that, plus 500mb of data. Perfect for my needs.
As for the phone itself, well where to start....?
The cost of the iPhone can very enormously depending on where you buy it from, and whether you choose pay as you go or a contract. On pay as you go you of course have to buy the phone outright which can cost around £300-£400. You are then free to insert your own sim and off you go. I however wasn't prepared to fork out that kind of dosh for a phone though so chose to get a contract. My deal with T-Mobile which I believe is no longer available costs me £15 per month for 50 minutes, 50 texts and 500mb of data for the internet and emails over 24 months. This is fine for my needs but there are a myriad of deals available should you need more calls per month etc.... monthly plans vary in cost from £20 right up to £90, there are too many to list here but a rough guide is the more calls and texts you need, the more it will cost you. Not rocket science really.
***What comes with it?***
The iPhone comes in a smart looking black box with a picture of the phone on the top. Inside are the phone (obviously), a pair of white standard Apple earphones, mains charger/synch cable and operating instructions. They also chuck in a couple of Apple logo stickers which I'm not entirely sure what to do with.
***Setting up the Phone***
This is simple. On getting home I took the phone out of it's box and inserted the sim card. This is little fiddly as you have to use a little metal tab in the box and use that to open a a tab on the end of the phone, once you've managed that it's all good.
Once the sim is in you need to plus the phone into the charger and get some juice into it. This took about an hour before the phone showed any sign of life.
Following this a picture appeared on the screen of the phone prompting me to connect the phone to iTunes via my computer, this I did with the included synch cable. iTunes almost instantly recognised my new phone which I was able to give a name and synch with all the apps and songs etc.. I already had.
From opening the box to getting the phone completely set up and operating with my personal email accounts, Facebook etc....took less than 2 hours. Very impressive.
If you don't know what a iPhone looks like by now you're either living in North Korea or been in a cave/or Mars for the past 5 years.
For the benefit of those who really want to know...the iPhone 3GS is sleek looking bit of kit. It's black in colour with a silver band around the front edge. The only text on it are the name of the phone on the back along with the serial number.
The screen takes up most of the front and is dark grey in colour when not being used, blending in nicely with the rest of the phone. On the front are the home button at the bottom and the microphone at the top. The earphone jack and on/off button are at the top edge and the volume button at the side. These are easy to navigate and find your way around, especially if you've been used to using an iPod Touch.
The battery life is around 30 hours so I'm told when in stand by, of course using the phone regularly depletes this much more quickly and I find I need to charge it fully every evening after a full days use. Using apps or games that are graphics rich will deplete the battery even more quickly. You do receive a warning message when the phone has less than 20% battery left. I have discovered since writing my initial review that you can turn on a setting which allows you to see on the screen exactly how much battery is left in percentages, i.e 39% I find this very useful, much more than just a bar on the screen showing full etc.....
The built in camera is a 3mega pixel one which although cannot compete with stand along cameras is more than adequate for the kind of snaps you would expect to take on a phone. I have tried it out a few times and found it takes very good pictures that are clear and in focus. You can even zoom in and edit them before saving to your memory. A good feature is the ability to tweet them directly from the camera or send them to Facebook or via email.
One of the best things about the iPhone are the apps. It comes pre-loaded with standard ones including photos, contact book, weather, notes, YouTube etc....also rather bizarrely a stocks app which I see no point it.
Via the App store online you can download virtually thousands of free and paid for apps, there are apps for anything pretty much now and for all tastes and interests. Once you have them on your phone you can arrange them in any layout you like and also delete them easily should you grow tired of them or (god forbid) run of out room.
I can't review the iPhone without actually talking about the phone part of it can I?! The icon for the phone is green and by default at the bottom of the screen. By clicking on it brings up several options including your contacts, voicemail and the phone keypad. You can either make a call by bringing up the keypad and typing the number in or by accessing a number via your contact book.
The call quality is clear and loud and connects without any issues that I have encountered. You can choose from a long list of built in ringtones though, for some odd reason, you can't select any of your songs as a ringtone instead. That would be a nice added feature (something for the iPhone 5 perhaps?)
Text messages are easy and fun to send. Instead of having individual messages clogging up your inbox it saves complete conversations which I find a nice touch, also easy to navigate. A great feature with the iPhone is the ability to send messages to other iPhones or iPads via iMessage. This system is like SMS but free :) if you send a message to another iPhone it doesn't cost a penny. This is fantastic as the person I text the most has an iPhone, result!
I have been playing with the phone on and off and have discovered lots of little features which I find very useful and at times fascinating. To start with, you have the ability to create shortcuts to use in text messages, for instance you can add a shortcut for "See you soon" as "SUS", when you type these letters in a text the phrase it connects with pops up automatically.
One last thing I should add about the phone, before I bore everyone...it's very advisable to put the phone in a case with a screen protector. The shiny surface picks up greasy marks and finger prints very easily and you don't want to wiping them off every five minutes.
***Would I recommend the iPhone?***
Absolutely, it's a little on the bulky side (especially when in a case) and surprisingly heavy compared to my old mobile but it has everything you could possibly need in one little package. The ability to email, surf the net and call people on the go without having to search out a wifi spot is brilliant. Go get one!
Summary: An excellent smart phone, a true all rounder.
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