Apple iPhone 2.2 Software Update

Minor functionality boost, much-needed bug fixes

  • Review
  • Specs
  • Images
  • User Reviews
  • Buy Now
Apple iPhone 2.2 Software Update
  • Apple iPhone 2.2 Software Update
  • Apple iPhone 2.2 Software Update
  • Apple iPhone 2.2 Software Update
  • Expert Rating

    3.25 / 5

Pros

  • Street View, podcast downloads, public transport directions, Safari bug crash fixes

Cons

  • No major functionality additions

Bottom Line

Apple’s latest update to the iPhone brings a raft of features that are, in the scheme of things, quite insignificant. Nevertheless, the new features are well-implemented. Though they are not all immediately available to Australians, there is still enough to be excited about.

Would you buy this?

Each time Apple releases a new software update for the iPhone, geeks everywhere shout for joy. It heralds the dawning of a new age, the beginning of a new chapter in the iPhone’s history, and reinvigorates the hope that maybe, just maybe, Apple has answered their prayers and added their desired functionality. The 2.2 Software Update certainly isn’t the Holy Grail — it doesn't add functions to the iPhone that users have pined for since the handset's original launch in 2007. Nevertheless, it fixes some bugs and makes the device more usable.

Apple seems to have focused on improving Maps in the 2.2 Software Update, making several aesthetic and functionality changes for a better overall experience. Most obvious is the addition of Street View, Google’s street-level panorama view of major cities. This has been implemented on the iPhone through drop pins, which also display the full address of their location as part of the update. Once the Street View icon is pressed, Maps will automatically shift into landscape mode, allowing users to navigate the panorama in the same fashion they would using its desktop counterpart. The performance largely depends on connection speed; the Wi-Fi access point we used for testing was quite slow in downloading images, but the iPhone was able to render them quickly.

The other big boost to Maps is the addition of public transport and walking directions. In directions mode, users can now switch between car, public transport and walking mode, with transport suggestions and timetables available for some public transport routes. Australian users don't have full access to this yet; some users have claimed they can access the functionality in Western Australia, but it doesn’t seem to have made its way to other states.

To the joy of many, Apple has added over-the-air podcast downloads to the 2.2 Software Update. The addition comes after Apple knocked back a third-party app that was able to do this. Podcast downloads are available through the iTunes Wi-Fi Store. Though other store items are only available for download using Wi-Fi, podcasts can be downloaded over 3G radio as well. Apple has placed the same 10MB cap on them that App Store downloads have — a severe restriction for vodcasts, but a reasonable decision. Otherwise, podcasts can be streamed or downloaded, with the latter added to the iPod’s podcast section.

Bug fixes are a key part of 2.2, with Apple patching Safari, Mail and the phone software itself. Mail has been patched to fix problems with its scheduled fetch capability. Apple has allegedly managed to reduce the number of dropped calls as well as call setup failures, though we weren’t able to confirm whether this is the case. Considering similar claims from Apple in the past haven’t lived up to expectations, we can’t help but treat the claim with suspicion.

The 2.1 Software Update seemed to break Safari for many users, introducing random crashes that were tenuously linked to JavaScript problems. The new update remedies the majority of those issues. Experimenting with Safari under the 2.2 Software Update caused no crashes or irregularities. The overall reliability of the browser seems to be much better than 2.1.

The App Store has undergone some minor cosmetic changes. Each category now has a general icon, making them easy to select for people with large fingers. Application filters have also been introduced to the categories section, allowing users to sort applications into “Top Free”, “Top Paid” and “Release Date” sections, similar to the Top 25 section. Perhaps most useful is the addition of multiple screenshots for each individual application, giving users greater insight into an application’s purpose and function. Though these changes are relatively minor, they do make the App Store easier to navigate and use.

Join the PC World newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?