Ryan Cash has responded to hubbub over iPhone mute switch settings by proposing “iPhone profiles,” similar to what older Nokia phones used:
“You could set one up called ‘Work’ that would also have silent keytones, but wouldn’t even vibrate (which can be very disruptive in an enclosed meeting room).
You could setup a Profile for your phone called ‘Movie.’ Your phone would only vibrate when it rings, and the keys would be silent.
You’d set one up called ‘Party’ that would blow all the sounds and whistles. You’d be able to hear your phone ringing over the crowd on full volume (or feel the vibration if that fails), and you’d get the audible feedback when pressing buttons – assurance you may need after a few drinks.”
It’s an interesting idea, but I suspect Apple would consider that “messy” for users. I can’t imagine a user like my mom, for example, setting up several profiles. Plus, “Patron X” didn’t even know how to turn his iPhone off, let alone fiddle with fine-grain alert settings. In short, it’d be great for geeks like you and me, but we represent the minority of users.