Thursday, January 24, 2008


Macworld was a great time last week even if nothing ground breaking happened other than a very thin and a very expensive laptop was released. In my book, Apple TVs update and HD movie rentals was the big news. But what bugged me more than anything was the lack of something and that something was the missing feature of Cut-n-Paste in the iPhone. Without a doubt, this has got to be the most annoying omitted ingredient of the iPhone and yet still, Apple continues to ignore this chasm. Yes, chasm! I can’t understand why there isn’t more of an uproar about this must-have option in such a versatile device. I’m tired of typing in long web addresses from notes, address book notes, and iCal note fields that the iPhone seems to ignore and translate into hyperlinks. I’m tired of typing in redundant information into notes or iCal entries. I’m tired of hand copying text from web sites into other applications. Heck, try typing, from memory at best, long WEP keys for protected wireless networks! Tired, tired, tired! What gives?!

Well, I hunted someone down at Macworld to give me the answers and after a long search and pass off after pass off from Apple employee to Apple employee, I finally got an answer. The deal is, Apple is aware of the desire for this option and it is working on it in the labs as we speak. The trouble it is having is implementation. How to easily call up a copy or cut option and then the paste action. It’s probable that the zoom bubble (the one that brings up the edit cursor) is the issue as it has removed the obvious tap and hold position from Apple to use for a pop-up menu of some sort. Text selection is another difficulty to sort out. Certainly, the cursor could be added to the menu selection; however, Apple wants to keep this as simple as possible and that added step would not lend itself to simple.

My source would not give me any details other than to say that it has been working on the solution for some time and that there was no immediate release for it. So at best, we can hope that the interface hurdle will be leaped over very soon.

As to Exchange, a straight answer was more difficult to pull out of my Apple source. Yes, Apple knows that there are business professionals that want support for it (and Blackberry Enterprise Server) and Apple is not ignoring this demand. The source would not go as far as to say that it’s being worked on, but when I asked for clarification by questioning, “So is Apple not working on a solution?” he simply laughed and said, “Apple’s aware of the Exchange need.” So, take that at face value, business professionals.

While there is a slew of other unanswered features many have called for since day one, such as voice dialing, these two were my main concern and I was glad to at least get some kind of answer. My source suggested letting Apple know of my fire desires in encouragement that this would help push for a quicker resolve. So, folks, if you agree with my needs, head over to Apple and let them know now!

36 Responses to “The Skinny on Why the iPhone Update Lacked Cut-n-Paste and Exchange Support”

  1. shane blyth Says:

    when I choose forward it copies and pastes the message automatically in the new mail message on my iphone. I am not too sure if this is a standard feature as I am using an add on app called iSMS. So maybe there is a sort of copy and paste possible function already in there or at least in iSMS

  2. Chris Woods Says:

    Here’s a great copy/paste concept video:

  3. Jason Says:

    @Chris Woods
    That demo was well done and an interesting concept. I have another idea. Two taps followed by a third tap-and-hold to bring up a copy icon. With the finger still on the screen from the tap-hold, drag to the end of the text to highlight the text to be copied. I like the idea of a clipboard window that opens to confirm. To paste, simply Tap-Tap-Tap-Tap (can be two quick tap-tap combinations). Just my 2 cents (7 cents with inflation).

  4. Some reports about Copy/Paste on IPhones and Exchange support Says:

    [...] this post digg_bgcolor = ‘#ff9900′; digg_skin = ‘compact’; digg_window = [...]

  5. » Blog Archive » O mistério da ausência do copy/paste no iPhone Says:

    [...] site SvenOnTech diz ter conversado com um profissional da Apple que explicou porque a empresa ainda não [...]

  6. iPhone Copia e Incolla Says:

    [...] sito si vanta di essere riuscito, durante lo scorso MacWorld, a intrattenere una chiaccherata amichevole [...]

  7. sachin Says:

    I am in India. My situation is exactly like yours. I am in great need of that copy and paste feature and I am now prone to my iPhone.

  8. iPhone Copy and Paste | iPhoneReloaded Says:

    [...] ein Blogger bei SvenOnTech berichtet, habe er bei auf der MacWorld mit einem Apple-Verantwortlichen gesprochen bezüglich [...]

  9. Apple aware of Copy & Paste demand but hamstrung by usability - PHONE Magazine Says:

    [...] from documents and more.  Which is why the absence of the feature on the iPhone is so strange; Sven Rafferty was fed up of hand-copying from one app to another, and so while everyone else was cooing at the [...]

  10. David Chartier Says:

    It’s not much, but 1Password’s forthcoming iPhone form filler that works via a few clever bookmarklets could be a start. I interviewed these guys at Macworld:

  11. Ipho 2 sync Says:

    Copy & Paste + Exchange Support… So many more basic features looks missing on my side. Can somebody sync a same iphone calendar and address book with 2 different computers? I can’t ! iTunes is a real jail including for my private data! No bluetooth sync neither… Why is the iPhone so closed?

  12. brian Says:

    Release the name of your source. Someone needs to be held accountable!
    Honestly, I could just as easily have written a blog article that says the same thing, and I didn’t even ATTEND MacWorld.
    We all want cut and paste and exchange support on the iPhone, but not giving us any credible information about who you spoke with does little to make us feel like our voices have been heard.

  13. Why isn’t C&P on the iPhone yet? No Copia e Incolla sulla 1.1.3 ? « Cellularmania’s .it Weblog Says:

    [...] A site called Sven on Tech claims to have word straight from an Apple “source” as to why there isn’t cut and paste on the iPhone. Apparently, and get this, they just haven’t figured out how to implement it yet. In other news, the Apple TV will be a success, as soon as Apple figures out how to implement that, too.Yeah, in case you haven’t guessed yet, I don’t buy it. I’m not sure who this “source” is (and there should be an unwritten rule of journalism that anyone who wears a nametag at a convention booth doesn’t get to count as a “source,” unless they’re talking about nametag news), but if someone from Apple says that implementation was the only reason they haven’t put copy-and-paste on the iPhone, then either they’re lying, or they’re just plain too full of themselves. Let’s not forget, despite their achievements, that this is the company that created the worst error message implementation known to man — the iPhone won’t be a failure if the copy and paste is a little more complicated than most other functions. They haven’t figured out how to implement it? Surely they’ve seen this– they know it’s possible.But here’s why my reasoning falls down: I can’t think of another reason Apple would keep it off the iPhone. Do they think people don’t need to cut and paste? Is the RIAA expanding their fight against copying music to copying and pasting everything? Does Steve just never visit any sites besides and thus never have to copy and paste anything? I don’t buy the “implementation” argument but I don’t, unfortunately, have a better one to put in its place. [...]

  14. Why isn't C&P on the iPhone yet? Says:

    [...] site called Sven on Tech claims to have word straight from an Apple “source” as to why there isn’t cut and [...]

  15. Nmancer’s TekLog » Blog Archive » Why Isn’t Copy & Paste On The iPhone Yet? Says:

    [...] site called Sven on Tech claims to have word straight from an Apple “source” as to why there isn’t cut and [...]

  16. Sven Rafferty Says:

    With recent posts from former Apple employees whom speak of the ‘Fear of Steve’ from leaking any information, even after leaving the company, I’m not even going to reveal my source. Yes, I can understand the difficulty in believing all of this; however, other sites have been sued and shutdown by Apple with little more than I’ve revealed. I stand by what I have stated here and those that know me know I would not make up anything printed here.

  17. Apple working on iPhone Copy, Paste | Apple Daily News Says:

    [...] Source: svenontech [...]

  18. Cut and Paste on the iPhone « The Daily Tech Says:

    [...] by zcollvee on January 29, 2008 Source from SvenOnTech says they have got the inside word about why there is not C+P on iPhone and not to mention [...]

  19. Knippen en plakken op de iPhone » Nieuws » Says:

    [...] zo eenvoudig mogelijk wilde houden, is het niet eerder gelukt. Nu alleen nog even een screenshot, Sven! Oh, en een datum wanneer Apple de knip-en-plakfunctie gaat aankondigen, zou ook handig [...]

  20. Novità per iPhone « Melatini Says:

    [...] Quelli di SvenonTech hanno ricevuto informazioni relative alla funzione “copia e incolla” ancora assente in [...]

  21. Why isn’t C&P on the iPhone yet? | Says:

    [...] site called Sven on Tech claims to have word straight from an Apple “source” as to why there isn’t cut and [...]

  22. the Duck Says:

    I call B.S. on Sven! Me thinks your source is in your underware. :shock:

  23. Anthony Taurus Says:

    hahahhahahahahahha… serious? steve jobs doesn’t know how to do something. LOL. well the reason apple can’t get it is because it hasn’t been invented yet. ya see, apple retards were messing with a new technology that doesn’t seem to operate on a level they know anything about. so while you wait for apple, apple waits for someone to come up with the idea so they can either buy it, lease it, or steal it until sued for copyright infringement. while we’re wondering about no copy/paste… WHERE’S THE FM RADIO? and let’s not forget that pesky annoying issue of FREEDOM to choose a carrier! lol.

  24. Oh dear god Says:

    You, sir, are an idiot. Thank you for the information-free post.

  25. » iPhone: Kopieren geht über Studieren Says:

    [...] die Botschaft wohl beim Hersteller angekommen ist? Aber sicher, behauptet das Blog SvenOnTech mit Verweis auf ominöse Hinweise von Apple-Arbeitern während der Macworld [...]

  26. Gil Says:

    well I really hope that iPhone will have the ability to view videos that requires Flash Player software while online… I really hope that they will consider 3rd party apps! :smile:

  27. Greg Says:

    Copy and paste would be nice features to have. How about adding the copy and paste feature with support for the Apple wireless keyboard? However there are a number of features Apple should push out the door first such as voice dialing and many others that are really needed on the iPhone. :idea:

  28. All Things Dork » Blog Archive » SvenOnTech » Blog Archive » The Skinny on Why the iPhone Update Lacked Cut-n-Paste and Exchange Support Says:

    [...] SvenOnTech » Blog Archive » The Skinny on Why the iPhone Update Lacked Cut-n-Paste and Exchange Su… [...]

  29. Calvin Says:

    Actually the EASIEST way to do this would be to add two more buttons at the bottom. One for the magnifying glass and one for selecting glass (does the same thing as the magnifying glass but highlights the path). This way you can toggle between the two options.

  30. Joe Says:

    HA! I love to watch “technology” people who clearly don’t knwo the first thing about technology– like Sven here– talk about the iPhone- and in doing so show they don’t know the first thing about the iPhone either!

    The iPhone needs cut-and-past like it need alot of plastic buttons.

    You should be asking for a button numeric keypad so you can dial!

    Does anybody read this crap? Astoundingly clueless this sven is.

    I know the mac people are coming over here to laugh, but man… anyone take this seriously? You’d have to have never used an iPhone to buy this caca.

  31. Sven Rafferty Says:

    Based on Apple’s work on this feature and the call for it from many other technology authorities such as those from Macworld, This Week in Tech, and iJustine, I’d have to say Joe, you live in a Nintendo world.

  32. Why isn’t C&P on the iPhone yet? | Apple Blog Says:

    [...] site called Sven on Tech claims to have word straight from an Apple “source” as to why there isn’t cut and [...]

  33. Cory Says:

    Whoa Joe, not sure what planet you’ve arrived from. Maybe my post should read, “HA! I love to watch “iPhone” people who clearly don’t know the first thing about phones and how people use them!”

    I’m not sure how much about technology I need to understand to realize that Apple has invented the first cell phone requiring a pen and paper to use. Let’s say your son sends you an MMS message. What do you get? You get a text message with a URL to AT&T’s site. In the text message you get a made up username and a made up password. What do I do with this? If I click on the URL I can no longer read the text message. I could try to memorize a user name like “C0$%%Cxkz&-2″ and then memorize the equally compelling and always memorable password “898@!@#993jd983″, or whip out pen and pad?

    Say I’d like to email someone one of my contact records? Nah, can’t do that. I’ll have to look at the contact record, memorize their Name, Title, Company, Address, Mobile, Cell, email address and website. Not likely.

    Oh well, at least if I’m on the phone with AT&T customer service and they ask me what the last three numbers I dialed were, I could just click my recents…oh wait, no can’t do that either. I’ll need to put the call on hold, click “add another call”, click recents, memorize the two phone numbers and time of call, click cancel, then take the call off hold.

    No you’re right, the iPhone doesn’t need cut-and-paste, I just need to get a better memory.
    Apple just invented the first cell phone that requires pen and paper to use. I’m not sure how much technology I need to know to realize that I just received an email in my inbox with a usename and made up password “UC566$#@%))” and now somehow need to browse to that sight, enter that password in? You are full of yourself. I suggest you think before you post next time. Wow!

  34. Copy and Paste, coming soon? |  Says:

    [...] to Sven over at, Apple is very much aware of the demand of copy and paste functionality on the iPhone and [...]

  35. Jenni Leathes Says:

    Excellent post. If you are looking to listen to BBC Radio on the iPhone – I strongly recommend BBC Radio iPhone Streams – it is easily the best way to listen to BBC Radio on the iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch and it’s free at

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