Cringely has an article up about the iPhone (who doesn’t this week?), with what may be the first logical, convincing guess as to what Apple’s reason might be for not including 3G data capability (like speedy HSDPA) in the iPhone, instead shackling us with pokey slow EDGE:
Apple wants the iPhone to get its content primarily through iTunes, ideally by syncing with a Mac or Windows PC. Apple doesn’t like Cingular Video and doesn’t want its customers to know it exists, much less use it. But it would be very hard to introduce a true 3G iPhone, have Cingular promote it strongly, only to say that it can’t be used to view the mobile carrier’s own video content. So instead Apple falls back to the slower EDGE network, which can support email and widgets and surfing, but which also forces iPhone users to get most of their higher-resolution video through iTunes, where Apple makes money and Cingular doesn’t. (emphasis mine)
This argument makes sense, especially if you consider that Apple is a corporation, out to make money (and, as Cringely notes, not just play in the cell phone market, but dominate it). That doesn’t mean I like it, though, and I still maintain that it would be monumentally stupid of Apple to release such an advanced “Internet Communicator” without support for the fast (and backwards compatible) network that Cingular actually has in place. Bottom line is, I don’t know if I can bear to go back to the slow barren wasteland that is EDGE after living in the land of speedy EVDO milk and honey.
The rest of Cringely’s piece is a good read – go check it out.
And I promise that at some point soon, I’ll stop blogging constantly about the iPhone. I just need to find something else that makes my geek parts feel all warm and tingly.