Now this feels more like an Apple product. If you haven’t seen it, the unofficial changelog has some very cool tips not mentioned in the main list.

The backup speed is simply amazing compared to 2.0, but mostly I’m just happy I don’t have to put up with a 3-5 second freeze after accidentally bumping the contacts button or spending 5 minutes moving apps around after a batch of upgrades. Still a little disappointed in the iPod functionality; while the improved listings are nice it still lacks Podcast shownotes, although I don’t know where they’d put them. And although the seek bar is a little wider thanks to repeat/shuffle moving down below it’s still fairly painful to seek in a long show.

The battery life, however, I’m really happy with. After nearly a full day playing music, with plenty of screen-on time as I pause / resume / check email, my battery looks like this:

I should probably caveat that with a few battery life tips that I’ve discovered in the last couple of months. I had managed to get the battery life at a decent level on the 2.0 software so now it’s fantastic ๐Ÿ™‚

  • If you’re not in 3G range, which I wasn’t while on holiday, turn off 3G mode. Even when not connected to 3G the phone will seek a 3G signal which chews up just as much battery life. In fact, if you are out of service range use airplane mode. With no wireless connections at all it’s amazing how long the battery lasts ๐Ÿ˜‰
  • Turn off WiFi unless you have a really bad data plan or need access to the local network. I don’t think I’ll ever hit my 500mb/month limit and I can’t believe how much battery life I saved with this tip. With v2.0 just sitting on my desk checking mail every hour for a workday it went from under 50% left to probably over 75%. I haven’t tested that exact scenario since 2.1, I have been actually using it most of the day and still sitting close to 50% as you see above ๐Ÿ˜‰
  • With most indoor lighting, you can keep the brightness at minumum and still read the screen fairly well (I leave auto brightness on to assist with this). I only crank it up when I’m outside or showing off; screen brightness is probably the biggest drain on battery life (just as it is for laptops).

Hope that helps – it’s done wonders for me, I can now easily get use out of my phone for a full day without worrying about it going flat. Makes for a much better experience ๐Ÿ˜€