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So... who's using an iphone on tour?

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So... who's using an iphone on tour?

Old 03-12-08, 11:19 AM
  #1  
foamy
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So... who's using an iphone on tour?

I'm considering getting one and am curious about how practical people find them to be as an internet, blog keeper and photo downloading device. Does anyone have any experience with them?

It's either that or I may just not bother at all. I don't see myself tracking down libraries to use, though, I might. I was hoping for a simpler, more convenient solution and I guess what I'm asking is—is the iphone an answer?

It does have the virtue of internet accessibility and of combining several electronic devices into one small, neat package. That and I'm familiar with Safari and Macs, having worked on nothing else since I first had to start using a computer in '91.

Again, does anyone have any practical travel/touring experience with them?

Last edited by foamy; 03-12-08 at 11:25 AM.
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Old 03-12-08, 12:05 PM
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I wouldn't try web surfing away from a hotspot with an iPhone, but for email, music and phone, it's great.
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Old 03-12-08, 12:33 PM
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Don't know if it's the answer for you, but it is not bad.

Not sure I know what you mean by "downloading pictures" though

I travel with mine, and use it for riding (love the locate me and mapping features), but I do not bicycle tour. This is indeed one of the main reasons I purchased one. I was tired of having to map out long rides, and quite often strayed off course. I no longer carry paper maps in baggies. Since I always rode with a cell anyway, everything else on the phone was pure bonus (for riding that is).

While having a wifi hotspot is the way to go, surfing the web on the edge network is not too bad in a pinch, if you stay away from media rich sites, and even then it is not terrible. This isn't a desktop, it is a handheld device.

Am I satisfied with mine, yes.

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Old 03-13-08, 07:27 AM
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If you're just looking for a phone with net access you can get some good deals from fusewirless.com they have Sidekicks and Blackberrys from $0-$50 (with contract). Something like that might work for you. If you use a Sidekick III (I wouldn't suggest SK ID) there is a Data-Only plan that is $30/mo unlimited.
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Old 03-13-08, 10:49 AM
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Originally Posted by foamy View Post
I'm considering getting one and am curious about how practical people find them to be as an internet, blog keeper and photo downloading device. Does anyone have any experience with them?
I have no experience yet, but will be using my iphone on a long tour this summer.

Pros:
- the map application is incredibly useful, even over the edge network, especially w/ the "locate me" function (poor man's gps). I routinely use this when lost in the countryside.
- you *can* check email and surf the web. It is slow, but if the option is slow, or not at all, slow is fine.
- you *can* take pictures w/ it and email to crazyguonabike and have a travel diary automatically updated, including pictures
- all the other goodness w/ it's phone and ipod functionality

Cons:
- the pictures are low fidelity, and take a goodly amount of time to upload each (5 minutes?)
- battery life isn't great when you're doing all this stuff, but it does charge quickly
- can't upload pictures from real camera
- no keyboard (though there are rumors that bluetooth keyboards will be enabled soon)

And on top of all this, 3G versions are expected out soon (a couple months).
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Old 03-13-08, 05:49 PM
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I would not take my iphone on tour as its my new baby.... i would hate to see it damaged on lost.
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Old 03-13-08, 06:12 PM
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Thanks for the suggestions and comments folks, it's appreciated. It seems it may not be the 'perfect' item for blogging and what-not. On the other hand it does combine a lot of electronic gadgets into one handy device (and one charger). Phone, ipod and internet being a right fair combination. Think I'll stick with a conventional, high-pixel digital camera, though.

quester, I was talking with a propeller-head at work and (this may be mis-information) I'm told there are better, second party batteries available for it, which would be a plus. I'll investigate further. A G3 coming out? I gotta get back in the loop.

Again, thanks everyone, for your replies.
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Old 03-13-08, 07:45 PM
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I don't know about any better batteries. However, this is a circuit-protected way to charge from AA's. I haven't tried it, but I'm considering it.
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Old 03-13-08, 07:47 PM
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I'm considering getting an iPhone for touring too. Perhaps this solar charger (and battery?) would be of help, if you can get one.
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Old 03-17-08, 06:57 PM
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Originally Posted by quester View Post
Cons:
- can't upload pictures from real camera
Are you sure about this? The standard iPod has an accessory that plugs into the iPod and it allows you to insert a memory card and the pictures get loaded on the ipod. Do you know if iPod accessories can be plugged into the iPhone?
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Old 03-21-08, 03:38 PM
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Originally Posted by bokes View Post
Are you sure about this? The standard iPod has an accessory that plugs into the iPod and it allows you to insert a memory card and the pictures get loaded on the ipod. Do you know if iPod accessories can be plugged into the iPhone?
Hey Rick!

I don't have experience with an iphone, but I did use a Nokia E61i smartphone on my tour last summer. It worked great for keeping a journal (I used a folding bluetooth keyboard for typing) and checking email with Gmail's mobile phone application. It was ok for web browsing if needed (using free wifi spots) and for playing mp3s on occasion. I was able to easily recharge it with a 6.5 watt folding solar panel.

If you can get the iphone to work with a bluetooth keyboard, I'd say go for it. A smartphone is a handy gadget to carry if you don't want to carry a full laptop. It won't do everything a laptop can, but it's much lighter and easier to re-charge (and it easily fits in a pocket or handlebar bag!).
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Old 03-21-08, 04:06 PM
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Sidekick>Iphone...

Satellite Internet is way more awesome than WiFi.
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Old 03-22-08, 06:51 AM
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I wouldnt bother..... But thats because I dont get the Ipone.... I was playing with my BIL's and it was the most akward thing to use.... I'm generation Y for heck sake! I have been using computerized gagetry for most of my life! I just dont get the Iphone....

JMHO
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Old 03-22-08, 11:06 AM
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Originally Posted by velo2000 View Post
Hey Rick!

I don't have experience with an iphone, but I did use a Nokia E61i smartphone on my tour last summer. It worked great for keeping a journal (I used a folding bluetooth keyboard for typing) and checking email with Gmail's mobile phone application. It was ok for web browsing if needed (using free wifi spots) and for playing mp3s on occasion. I was able to easily recharge it with a 6.5 watt folding solar panel.

If you can get the iphone to work with a bluetooth keyboard, I'd say go for it. A smartphone is a handy gadget to carry if you don't want to carry a full laptop. It won't do everything a laptop can, but it's much lighter and easier to re-charge (and it easily fits in a pocket or handlebar bag!).
Hey Alan!

You mean that phone you had that resembled a small TRS-80 with all those wires sticking out, you recommend that? jk, When we were touring I had a phone, an Ipod, a GPS, and a camera and 4 cords! When we had breakfast I'd have devices spread around the restaurant charging!

For my next tour I want to get that down to 2 cords, one for the iPhone and the other a nice camera. The next iPhone is supposed to have a GPS, and of course it's a mp3 player, so that's 2 devices less I'd have to bring. Still waiting for the darn thing to come out.... good to talk to ya again Alan, pm me when you plan to go touring again. It's gonna be a while for me unfortunately.
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Old 04-20-08, 11:56 PM
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Just got myself an iPhone. I love it. Unlocked/jailbreaked to work with T-Mobile. Everything works fine - email, web browsing, youtube, etc. I came from a Blackberry & iPod Touch..and I'm very happy. Browsing is fine with T-Mobile's Edge, as long as it's not a large, graphic intensive web page. It loads text pages pretty fast. Ya, it's not that good for listening to music while cycling because there's no physical buttons, but that's the only downside. 8GB is perfect for keeping only the music I REALLY like with me. I don't need 80GB.

I bought it knowing full well about the 3G version coming soon. I don't care. I'm enjoying my iPhone. And when the 3G one comes, I'll buy it, unlock it, and use it with T-Mobile (when they get 3G, of course)
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