My wife and I were talking about how web apps like OneTrip work. I explained that you have to have a data plan on your iPhone to use them. During our discussion, it occurred to me that these web apps can also work with the iPhone's built-in WiFi. Once that occurred to me, A whole new line of uses popped into my mind.
Imagine walking into Meijer and seeing a sign that says, "iPhone Users: Meijer is happy to present 'DealFinder' for iPhone. Access it free using your iPhone's wireless capabilities at www.meijer.com/dealfinder." This could be an app like OneTrip. Now imagine if they tweaked it so that it did more than help you build your shopping list. Imagine if it even flagged items that were on sale or made suggestions based on what you already have on your list. If Meijer made WiFi available in it's store and encouraged people to use this app, they could track what people bought, effectiveness of sales, avg. amount spent per trip, etc. I just picked Meijer as an example, but the possibilities are endless.
That leads me to another possible positive effect the iPhone could have. If the above scenario were to begin taking place, you might see cities going WiFi at a more rapid pace. Wow! I admit, I have a good imagination. But really, it was only the mid 90's when the internet came into it's own and look at it now-it's ubiquitous. Imagine what a pocket-sized device with PC-like browsing capabilities could do for the world of mobile-web!