Unfortunately, I decided to return my iPhone 3G.  I had hoped it might replace my Sprint Treo 700wx.  I found out that ATT would let me return the iPhone within two weeks no questions asked if I didn’t like it.  I took the Treo and the iPhone out to California with me when I went hiking with my father.  The iPhone was nice, easy to watch Youtube videos (actually more fun for my son than for me), Exchange Active Sync email was very easy to set up.  The screen is just amazing.  Don’t know why Palm or HTC can’t come up with something to match this.  My father has the Sprint Instinct which is supposed to compete with the iPhone, based on screen alone, it comes up short.

The main problem for me was coverage.  ATT claims to have the best coverage, but I didn’t see it.  Driving into Death Valley from Vegas, I lost ATT signal 15 minutes before losing the Sprint signal.  Coming out of Death Valley, had Sprint signal 20 minutes before ATT picked up.  Neither phone had a signal on top of Telescope Peak, which didn’t surprise me, as this mountain is very remote.

Driving up 395 from Lone Pine, CA to Mammoth Lakes, CA, I was constantly losing signal on the iPhone, while the Sprint signal was solid.  On Mammoth Mountain again no signal on the iPhone, and although the Sprint signal wasn’t good.  I could find a few spots where both my phone and even my Sprint laptop card would work (we rode the gondola up Mammoth, why hike when you can ride!  It was our rest day anyway and I conducted some profitable business sitting in the cafe up at 11,100 feet.)

On Boundary Peak, no signal from either phone at the top (although I was darn near too tired to care), but got Sprint signal numerous times on the way up. Again Boundary is very remote, so no surprise.

No signal from either phone at Cottonwood Lakes, basecamp for Mt. Langley.  We decided to go light and fast, so I didn’t take either phone up, but last time I I climbed it had a great signal for the Treo on top of Langley.  I assume the iPhone would have worked too, as you can see Lone Pine, CA from the top and the iPhone works in Lone Pine.

We rock climbed in the Owens River Gorge, and amazingly the Sprint had signal, I can’t imagine where it was coming from.  The Gorge is pretty deep.  Again, iPhone was a useless brick.

Since for me it is important to be able to keep in contact easily,  I decided to stick with the Treo.  Plus the mess with trying to get six business phones out of our Sprint contract.

Maybe someday I’ll buy that Satelite phone and then I can go for the iPhone.

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