• 09.13.08

iPhone OS 2.1 Hits Web

Update promises speed and reliability.

Apple [NASDAQ:AAPL] has caught a lot of flak for all the issues cropping up with the iPhone 3G: dropped calls, bad 3G service, too-slow email, and the list goes on. Today it released iPhone OS 2.1 to ameliorate the problems, and here’s what you can expect.


The OS is noticably speedier: from typing (which used to lag) to jumping to Home, things feel snappier. Menus and scrolling don’t lag like they used to, either, and application installation and iTunes syncing are much quicker. 

What about call strength? While the update doesn’t make your iPhone have any better reception than it once did, it does allow it to more accurately display signal strength in the upper left hand corner of the screen, meaning you won’t be misled into making a call when you really have no business doing so (like in the Lincoln Tunnel, or on an airplane.) It’s unclear whether there have been any firmware improvements to go along with that updated indicator, that could allow the phone to better transition between EDGE/3G networks or better hold onto a 3G signal once it finds one. Apple claims better call performance all around, but isn’t saying how it’s squeezing that functionality out of the phone. Time will tell. Any commenters experiencing better reception?

About the author

I've written about innovation, design, and technology for Fast Company since 2007. I was the co-founding editor of FastCoLabs.