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Thoughts on iPhone 3G Firmware 2.1 Update

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Hey all!

Today we talk iPhone Firmware 2.1!

As most of you know, the 2.1 firmware came out for the iPhone 3G some time around 6:00am PST on Friday September 12, 2008. I managed to pick it up about 20 minutes later, but due to unforeseen errors during the install, it actually took me over 2 hours to install it. So, during my time installing, I decided to make a step-by-step guide of what to do if and when the update install goes wrong. See below:

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My 9-step Guide on what to do when iTunes @#$%’s up your iPhone 2.1 upgrade:

1.) The update hangs or something goes wrong that you are clearly able to see that something is not right.

2.) Force close iTunes by whatever means you force close applications

3.) The iPhone will go into recovery mode. iTunes loads up again (it will load on its own). You now have to restore the iPhone. Click “Check” at the first prompt, “Check” at the second prompt, and “Restore and Update”.

4.) Let iTunes do its thing. Takes about 7 minutes for the restore.

5.) When you get to the “Set up your iPhone” screen, choose “New iPhone” or “Backup”. I did backup.

6.) iPhone will begin backing up. The iPhone display will change and say “iPhone is activated” with no slide to whatever bars along the bottom and “Restore in Progress” along the top. The iPhone also doesn’t dim. Just stays at full brightness with that cryptic “activated” message.

7.) iPhone will begin restoring from the backup and take a really…long…time. Though I suppose the less actual ‘stuff’ on your iPhone would make for a faster backup.

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Intermission (45 minutes later)

8.) I guess at this time I should mention that if you have not previously synced your iPhone to iTunes in the last 24 hours, your “backup” will be from your last sync. So, sync often. I guess I could have mentioned this as a pre-step to step 1….

9.) So the restore from backup is done and now we move on to a black iPhone screen with the spinning loading progress thing. Push “OK” when prompted. iPhone Reboots. Wait for iPhone to show up in iTunes.

Thankfully, I am now successfully running 2.1 and loving it. The major fixes I was looking for were the Contact List lags and keyboard lags, both of which seem to be fixed thus far.

Below I have detailed a few things I have noticed so far with 2.1:

– Songs have their artists and albums shown in iPod under the song name

– Videos have a circle representing how far into the video you have watched

– Songs list has a search function/letters (like contacts) (Is this new?)

– No keyboard lag, no contact list lag

– SMS Repeat notification tone occurs approximately every 10 minutes if you have not viewed the message or simply acknowledged it

– New 3G and EDGE Symbols

– New GPRS Symbol

– Podcasts in the iPod have been totally reworked (displays how many episodes, length, and date prior to actually listening to it)

Some of the things I have noticed may not be new to 2.1, and some of the things I didn’t mention because they are obvious, such as the Genius stuff, but other than that the above list are of things I have not noticed before.

For those of you who have downloaded 2.1, how are your experiences? Good? Bad? Sound off in the comments below!

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