Posted in Technology by
Anthony Hortin

Apple kicked off their Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) yesterday, Monday June 8. There’s been quite a buzz over the last couple of months with speculation as to what Apple would or wouldn’t reveal.

One of the most talked about topics from yesterdays opening was the upcoming release of the new iPhone 3G S. The ‘S’ stands for Speed. The new iPhone is set to be released in the US on June 19 and will come in two flavours. A 16GB version for US$199 and a 32GB version for US$299. The existing 8GB version will be staying the same as it is currently, but will drop in price. For the rest of the world, we’ll probably have to wait till around August to see the new iPhone.

(Update: Apple has announced that the new iPhone will be available in Australian Apple retail stores on June 26. No word as yet on Aus prices or whether this June 26 date also applies to telecomms such as Telstra, Optus etc)

Improved performance

One of the major enhancements is the improved performance. Applications now workssignificantly faster. Up to 2x faster in fact. As well as running faster, they will also launch quicker. There’s also been speed improvements with rendering web pages. The other good news is that battery life will also improve. If you currently own and existing iPhone, you’ll know that the battery life isn’t the best. This new model will help fix that. As well as connecting to your current edge network, you can also connect to HSDPA enabled networks for improved down-link speeds.

3MP Camera With Video

The camera on the new iPhone is now 3MP. An improvement from the existing 2MP camera on the current 3G model. The camera is now also auto-focus with the added option of tapping the screen to change the focus point.

The other major improvement with the camera is the ability to take video, VGA up to 30fps with audio. Something which the existing iPhone lacks. Once you’ve taken your video, you’re then able to trim your footage by adjusting the start and end points, all within the iPhone itself. There’s no need to download the video file to your workstation to edit. Once edited, you can then share your video by email or MMS as well as posting it to your MobileMe gallery or YouTube.

Voice Control

Simply press and hold the Home button to activate voice control. You can find anyone in your contacts quickly and easily or you can also simply dial a phone number by speaking the number. Voice control also works in conjunction with your iPod. You can simply tell your iPhone what album or playlist to play, you can ask it what it is currently playing or even get it to create a Genius playlist based on the song you’re currently listening to.

Digital Compass

The new iPhone now also incorporates a digital compass. The compass can be used to point to Magnetic North or True North. You can either use the new compass app or you can even have it orientate maps to match the direction you’re facing.

Cut, Copy & Paste.

As announced a while ago as part of the new iPhone OS 3.0 upgrade, you’re now able to Cut, Copy & Paste within your iPhone apps. As well as working just within the current application, it also works between applications. So, as an example, you can copy text and images from a web page and paste it into an email. If you’ve made a mistake with the paste, simply shake the iPhone to Undo.

MMS

You can now send messages with text, video, photos, audio, locations, and contact information. You can even forward one or more messages to your other contacts.

Voice Memo

It’s possible to record a voice memo for later playback, using the new Voice Memo app. Once it’s recorded, you can then trim it and share it.

Search

Search now works significantly better within applications. There’s also a new Spotlight search that allows you to perform the search right across your iPhone contents. Spotlight works across contacts, email, calendar, notes, iPod and homepage screens.

Some of these features, such as the improved Spotlight search, Cut, Copy & Paste and the MMS functionality will also be available to existing iPhone 3G users once OS 3.0 is released worldwide on June 17.

I know I can’t wait for the new iPhone to be released, how about you? Are you upgrading your existing iPhone or are you planning on purchasing your first one? Leave a comment and let me know.

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