It's cool. Really cool. Apple gets major gadget points for this one. I'm very excited for it to come out, and I wish it were out today. I've been waiting for Apple to make a phone for a long time.
But I don't plan to buy one.
The iPhone looks great, but it's not what I want, need, or can justify for my phone.
Personally, I'm a Verizon Wireless guy. Their phones are terrible, their plans aren't notably cheap or flexible, their voicemail system is clunky, their phone web browsers are useless walled gardens, and most features offered by other providers' phones are locked down (behind additional fees) or completely absent. (Don't get me started on the uselessness of some of their recent efforts.)
But Verizon is extremely good for two things that I do a lot more often than trying to browse the web on a 2-inch screen, update to the latest pop-music ringtone, or take awful pictures:
The low-capacity 4 GB model is $500. With a 2-year Cingular contract.
A phone without buttons? Sounds cool, except we use buttons a lot while interacting with phones, such as... when dialing a number.
An on-screen keyboard has two significant problems:
I don't want an expensive, large-screen video iPod with terrible battery life - few people do. I don't want 3D animation of my mostly-missing album art in iTunes, I don't want a touch-screen phone with no buttons, I don't want to switch to Cingular, and I don't want to spend $100 per month on a voice-and-data plan.
I want a basic phone with a nice interface. That's it. Make a good version of the modern slim candybar phone.
What I really want is an iPhone nano, and I think Apple will eventually make one. Like the original $399 5 GB iPod, models and capacities will increase as price decreases, although the iPhone's required hardware (huge high-resolution screen, touch panel, advanced CPU, video accelerator) will require some feature cuts if they intend to make a lower-end model.
But the market for a basic, well-designed $149 phone is huge, and Apple won't ignore it forever. Once an iPhone fills that gap, I'll start caring.