iPhone as in-car iPod replacement?

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The only place I really have time to listen to my iPod is in the car. I live in Houston, and driving is a pretty huge part of life: I live about 12 miles from work and about 20 from the University of Houston, where I attend classes. The mass transit in this city leaves much to be desired, too.

Im in the car for about an hour a day, about 2 hours if I get let off work during rush hour! To entertain myself in the car, I listen to my iPod. I have a Sony car stereo, the cheapest one that had line-in in the front and free installation. I have my 4G iPod plugged into the front while the iPod sits in the little depression under the cupholders. I love this system I have set up and I havent listened to the radio or a CD for a good year and a half.

So, lets take out the iPod and replace it with the iPhone! Its the best iPod ever made, right?The cable I use normally wont fit into the iPhone because of its funky little recessed port, so I had to go buy one. I got the Belkin Retractable 3.5mm to 3.5mm cable for iPod/iPhone from the Apple Store in First Colony Mall for $20. The cable works just fine, but $20!? Geez. This cable had better learn how to make sandwiches

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One thing I love about the retractable cable is that I can roll it up and just have it stick off the front of my stereo. I'm too lazy to unplug it; that's just how I operate.

I plug in the iPhone to my stereo, set some Paul McCartney playing and head off to work. But what do I do when the album finishes? I usually just hit the enter button on my 4G iPod a few times to get back to the beginning of the album. I dont have to take my eyes off the road. Yeah, its the same album again, but at least its not silent in the car.

When the album ends on the iPhone, there are no buttons to feel to start the album again. I have to pick up the phone, unlock it, and look at the screen and find the button to click on. If there were an actual button to feel for, Id be much more comfortable with the whole situation. When the album ends I have to drive until I reach a stoplight to start it up again. Not cool, especially when Im on the highway! It gets lonely if I dont have Ben Folds, Felix Mendelssohn, or The Beastie Boys to keep me company.

The iPhone in the car does not yet cut it for me. If it had a remote that I could use without having to look at it, itd be a much better, less apt to die-in-a-car-crash experience. Thatd be pretty sweet. I dont like dying on my morning or afternoon commute its bad enough driving a tiny Hyundai Accent in a sea of giant SUVs and Pickup Trucks.

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