When last I wrote on this subject, I was in Cork Ireland and I'd just switched from a Windows Mobile device that I used as a phone and PDA to a new Blackberry Curve. I will admit that my opinion of the Curve was somewhat hasty. I used it for about a month and after learning several of the shortcuts and best practices that diehard Blackberry users leverage it was definitely more usable than I first thought. I can't honestly say that the UI was really all that much worse than on the Windows Mobile. The real difference is that I'm used to the Windows UI so I was already trained in its advantages and disadvantages. At the end of the day, these were the three largest issues that I had with the Blackberry. First, the Exchange sync isn't very good, even with our corporate REM server in the mix. After spending the day working from my laptop and wrangling through hundreds of messages in my Inbox the last thing I want to see is that the messages I'd removed my my Inbox are still there on the Blackberry. Second, the web browser is very weak. Going from the FireFox v3 beta on my laptop to that thing was depressing. Third, the multimedia capabilities aren't mature yet and I found myself still carrying my iPod everywhere I went.
So, it just so happened that my wife had started swiping my iPod Nano and so I picked up an iPod Touch. It only took me about 20 minutes to decide that it was the coolest thing since variable length subnet masking and so I returned it and upgraded to an iPhone.
Thus far, I freaking love it. I spend more time at home on my iPhone utilizing my WiFi network than I do on my laptop. The UI is fantastic - virtually no learning curve and a few features that just make you say "wow". I'm an iTunes fanatic so the fact that I can skip the laptop and go straight there from the iPhone is awesome. No more carrying a phone, PDA, and/or iPod. This is truly an all-in-one device.
The real test will come the next time I have to travel and rely heavily on the PDA functions of the phone for e-mail, viewing documents, and etc. Here at home it seems pretty good, but this isn't a fair test for those features and certainly doesn't compare to being stuck in Heathrow for several hours with nothing but a Blackberry and a ton of work to do.
I never thought I'd say this, but my experience with Apple products has been so good the last couple of years that I'll probably replace my laptop with a MAC. I know - what the heck am I saying - but, wow this phone is cool. I'm also in the midst of ordering an AppleTV for the house which I'm hoping will turn my HDTV into a giant iPod.
More to come in the next few weeks as I have some trips coming up that should push this thing pretty hard. BTW, if you're out at InterOP this year come and see me and I'll hook you up with some free stuff. If the phone proves to be a bad travel companion for work my teenager will inherit it and I'll go back to the iPod Touch for my music and video needs and try one of the next generation Windows Mobile devices next.