IOS 4 And My iPhone 3G

I have now been using IOS 4 on my iPhone 3G since the release of the OS on June 21st.

As many of you may know, not all features of IOS 4 are available for the iPone 3G hardware. Most notable among these is the app-switching capability loosely referred to as multi-tasking. I describe it this way because the iOS 4 implementation is not true multi-tasking which allows applications to continue to process in the background. Apple has implemented a narrow set of services which an App can use to maintain it’s state when not processing as the foreground application, but the app is suspended when in the background.

My biggest disappointment with the upgrade is the intermittent sluggishness of the iPhone 3G with the new OS. The touch screen is not as responsive and sometimes requires multiple touches to get the ball rolling. Another issue is that some apps are a little touchy at launching. Some days, they behave without a problem, but at other times, the apps just will not launch at all even after a “re-spring” (re-boot) of the device.

One feature I was looking forward to was “folders”; a means to group Apps to remove the clutter from the home screen. The feature does allow the home screen to be cleaned up, and the interface for adding or removing apps from a folder is seamless and intuitive. However, the final result leaves something to be desired. The largest drawback is that there is no distinctive difference between one folder and another other than the name given to the folder. For those of us with less than good eyesight, the “sameness” look makes it difficult to locate a specific group of applications. I had hoped that there would be a way to customize the folder icon in order to make each grouping visually identifiable, but, to date, this capability does not exist. With Apple’s general support for Accessibility for it’s devices, one would hope that this shortcoming will be addressed.

I have not detected any meaningful change in battery performance. I still run with notifications disabled which provides for a full day’s worth of battery life.

If not for my iPad 3G, I would probably attempt to restore my iPhone 3G back to iPhone OS 3.1.3, but, truth be known, the iPad has replaced my iPhone as my primary media consumption device. I plan to continue my journey with the iPhone 3G and IOS 4 with hopes that some improvements and enhancements will come to pass.