Remember the winning Engadget commercial, "The Long Arm of Steve Jobs"? We posted it after the break, but finding someone who's spent some serious time with a pre-launch iPhone and getting them to talk is basically a lot like that. Still, we managed to smuggle out some freshly leaked details from a very trusted inside source who's been fooling around with a unit. Here's what they had to say:
  • The keyboard was simply described as "disappointing". Keyboarding with two thumbs often registers multiple key presses (two or three at a time) resulting in a lot of mistakes. The best way to type is with a single finger (as shown in most of Apple's demos), but two thumbs is supposedly very difficult. After trying it for a number of days our source gave up using their thumbs.
  • The text auto-correction only works well for simple words, but doesn't work for proper names. We can only assume this bit will get better with time as Apple fills out its predictive text dictionary.
  • "It won't replace a BlackBerry. It's not good for text input. It's just not a business product."
  • The touchscreen was said to, in general, require somewhat hard presses to register input, and needs some getting used to.
  • In addition to its dock, the iPhone comes packaged with a polishing cloth (the thing's supposedly a fingerprint magnet, no surprise) and the usual smallish power adapter.
  • The Bluetooth headset will debut in the $120 range, and will come with its own dock for charging both the phone and the headset. The headset will feature a miniature magnetic charging interface á la MagSafe.
Click on for more impressions on the headset, browser, YouTube, and more.
  • The Bluetooth headset has a hidden LED and is supposedly a very small and elegant device. Sound quality is said to be "typical". There is no clip; like many headsets you're expected to just let it hang out of your ear, as previously shown.
  • The browser "worked well" but page load speeds on EDGE were just as slow as expected. It sounds like 3G users will have a tough run with this.
  • Users must scroll through the address book (or use the alphabet-drag on the side) -- one cannot bring up the keyboard and type in a name, as many of us are used to.
  • Shocker: YouTube over EDGE didn't work well at all, and will basically necessitate use of WiFi.
Ok, that's all we've got for now. At this point we're just really looking forward to putting the spurs to this thing -- Apple is hyping this product like nothing we've ever seen before, and we're ready to bring every detail to light. In the mean time, here's that commercial again.

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