If you have even the slightest interest in technology, you'll be well aware that Apple is launching its iPhone in the UK tomorrow. Of course you'll probably also be aware that the iPhone was launched in the US all the way back in June, which is somewhat annoying for all you UK Apple fans. But now that Apple's first foray into pocket communication is finally hitting the shores of Blighty, the big question is whether it was worth the wait.
First up, let me say that everything you may have heard about the iPhone interface being revolutionary is completely true, and then some! I honestly can't describe to you how much of a pleasure the iPhone is to use, and compared to pretty much any other mobile device, it's in a completely different league. This comes as no surprise, since Apple has always known how to create fantastic user interfaces - but despite already knowing this, and expecting it, I still found myself completely blown away when I started using the iPhone.
From the virtual sliding bar to unlock the phone, to the single Home button below the screen, absolutely everything in the iPhone has been designed with the end user in mind. Yes, it's true that the iPhone doesn't really do anything that a Windows Mobile device can't do, but whereas Microsoft expects the user to learn how to use its OS, Apple has designed the iPhone OS to be as simple and intuitive as possible. The result is that anyone who picks up an iPhone feels at ease with the interface within a couple of minutes.
Putting the interface to one side for a moment, I really have to mention the other area where Apple continually excels - product design. Even by Apple's own high standards, the iPhone is a beautiful looking product. The glossy black screen fascia, is offset by a solid chrome surround, while the back of the device is also metal, giving the whole thing a quality feel. Some may be put off by the 145g weight, but personally I feel that the weight adds to the solid, high quality feel of the iPhone. If there's one criticism, it's that all that glass and metal makes the iPhone quite slippery in the hand, so you need to make sure you have a good grip whenever you're retrieving it from your pocket.
With dimensions of 115 x 61 x 12mm (HxWxD) the iPhone is hardly small by phone standards, but Apple made a judgement call in this department. One of the most important aspects of the iPhone is the screen, so the overall size of the device is dictated by the size of the screen. Once you view the 3.5in display, you instantly realise that Apple made the right decision. The iPhone may not be as light or svelte as many other phones on the market, but the screen, with its 480 x 320 resolution definitely makes the size and weight worthwhile.