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20 Features Apple Should Add To The Next iPhone

Apple might be on the verge of launching the iPhone Mark 3. So we've compiled, with the help of our mobile columnist, Tim Belfall, a short list of 20 features that Apple could include in this forthcoming model.

(1) Come on Apple, my Siemens S1 Marathon can forward text messages. A FOURTEEN year old handset has a function that was thought of before SMS was a glimmer of a pre pay eye so why the blazes has the iPhone 3G not got it!

(2) Why can’t emails be read or created in landscape? The old Alcatel One Touch Com touch screen phone from 1998 could.

(3) Battery life is appalling (6-8 hours max), as bad as Three’s A925 handset of a few years ago. At least with that one you could swap batteries. I only hope the rumour of a bigger battery is true as battery life trumps weight any day.

(4) The iPhone is all about the music and media, so why does the iPhone not support A2DP so users can use a stereo Bluetooth headset, and not tread on cables. Hearing aid users with stereo Bluetooth loops also suffer.

(5) Some excellent applications usable in the UK are only available in the US. Why would Apple do that?

(6) Why can’t the iTunes allow ringtone downloads in the UK but they can in the US. If it is copyright related, Apple has had over a year to sort this out. Side loading is easy enough, but should not be necessary.

(7) So you have an iPhone app that needs to access Safari, your taken to the web page then want to go back. Without using the home button and restarting the original application, precisely how does the user do that? They can’t. Multi tasking, huh, dream on.

(8) Push notification for third party applications appears to have been delayed from the forthcoming iPhone firmware release. Why was it even necessary? All Apple needed was true multitasking for third party apps.

(9) There was a brief glimmer of hope that third party cut and paste may have been possible. Unfortunately Apple’s firmware breaks Zak White’s solution and replaces it with … nothing …

(10) Having music streamed in the background whilst checking emails, and then returning to the same place within a 20 page open document is simple using S60 or Windows Mobile Pro, it’s impossible with the iPhone as the OS does not support multitasking of third party applications. Apple’s notification service can’t get round this deficiency. Please allow true multitasking Apple.

(11) If Apple is really targeting business users why isn’t there an easy way of transferring documents without having to rely on a third party application?

(12) The headset Bluetooth profile is the only one the iPhone supports yet even that limited capability is stymied by the absence of voice dialling.

(13) To switch between the inbox of two email accounts takes four screen touches. Could there not be a drop down list of inboxes instead of just the go-back button?

(14) Apple can’t be bothered with a document editor, so get DataViz Documents To Go on a HTC Touch Pro . (Microsoft’s own document editor is awful)

(15) Images taken with the 2-megapixel camera are pretty poor. The Sony Ericsson P990i has the same pixel count but with autofocus the pictures are far clearer. Why didn’t Apple do the same? And while you are at it, throw in a flash.

(16) The E71 has it, the Nokia 6600 had it, so why can’t the iPhone print docs.

(17) Most mobile phones now have a microSD card reader - except the iPhone. There's no reasons (other than trying to fleece its customers) why Apple couldn't include one in the iPhone.

(18) The iPhone is not natively compatible with Linux out of the box, which is a shame really (ed: isn't it Calvin?). Shunning some of the brightest minds of the planet is something Microsoft used to do to Mac Hacks. So why should the latter to it to Linux Aficionados?

(19) Allowing Tethering (or forcing networks to allow them). The iPhone in theory can (and has been) used as modem for laptops and would be a rather nifty telecommunications appendage in dire situations.

(20) Why can't the iPhone be used as a video recorder natively? The phone already has a camera, ample onboard memory and great wireless features. Maybe network operators fear that the iPhone could be used as a wireless webcam?