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Apple iPhone 3GS review

Is the iPhone 3GS a worthy upgrade or is Apple's wonder phone starting to lose its lustre? We review the 3GS.

iPhone 3.0 OS

The rest of the improvements are those that come with the iPhone 3.0 update and these are available on the two older models as well. Highlights include Spotlight search now integrated into the OS. Simply slide left from the Home screen and you can search for emails and apps. You can even search your Gmail account and messages stored on the server. Push for Gmail is still absent however.

We also really liked the new improvements in the media application when you're listening to audio podcasts you can now skip backwards in 30 second chunks and listen at either half or two times speed, great for skipping the ads or boring bits.

However, the lack of multi-tasking is beginning to be an issue. While videos can remember their states, applications can't, which means you can't check say, check something on your phone while using the Skype application. With devices such as the Palm Pre able to support full multi-tasking, and Windows Mobile having done it for a while, (even if not very well) the iPhone's one app at a time approach makes for a very linear experience.

As a pure business device the email capabilities are attractive, particularly now it's had Exchange support for a good while, and larger companies can create custom apps specific for the phone. Apple's approval process means that this will only be an option for the really large companies however. Those some companies also may prefer to stick to BlackBerry due to the iPhone's lack of central manageability.

Battery LifeIn our tests we found that the iPhone didn't last significantly longer than the 3G. If you're using push email and GPS your battery will inevitably drain faster, and throw in some web browsing, video and game playing and you'll still be charging every night. We managed to get through one working day with these conditions, just as we did with the 3G. While it might last longer in standby mode, it's not a large enough increase to upgrade just on the promise of longer battery life.

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