Apple likes to top itself with newer versions of already very innovative products. The iPod long has been upgraded, tweaked with and improved upon. Apple is now playing the same update game with its popular Apple iPhone, announcing today some great and major changes to the mobile phone/iPod hybrid.
The new Apple iPhone is known as the iPhone 3G. Apple has set July 11 as the release date in 22 countries initially, with more than 70 countries having access to it later this year. Pricing for the iPhone 3G will cost around just $200 for an 8GB model and $300 for a 16GB model. These prices are, of course, tied into two year AT&T wireless rate plans.
So what makes the new iPhone 3G so interesting? The most important thing, and the reason for the name 3G, is the higher speed by which you'll be able to download data, browse the Web and check email. 3G as a data network offers quicker data access than EDGE, which is what the iPhone originally supported. It now offers quad-band GSM and tri-band HSDPA for voice and data connectivity around the world, automatically switching between 3G, Wi-Fi and EDGE depending upon available data networks. With 3G, you'll also be able to browse the web, get map directions, or check your email while you are on a call.
Business users will now find the iPhone more friendly for activities such as support for Microsoft Exchange ActiveSync to provide over-the-air push email, contact and calendar syncing as well as remote wipe and Cisco IPsec VPN for encrypted access to corporate networks. It will also work with Apple's new App Store, which lets you download and install native applications in a variety of categories including games, business, news, sports, health, reference and travel. Many of these applications will need to be purchased.
Apple has also added to the iPhone 3G built-in GPS support, so you can do real-time mapping and track your progress via compatible applications and online services. Other features of note, according to Apple, include black and white body colors, the ability to mass move and delete multiple email messages, search for contacts, access a new scientific calculator, turn on parental control restrictions for specified content, save images directly from a web page or email them to your iPhone and transfer them back to your photo library on your Mac or PC.Battery life of the iPhone 3G reportedly will offer 10 hours of talk time on 2G networks and 5 hours using 3G, with up to 5 to 6 hours of web browsing, up to 7 hours for video playback and up to 24 hours for audio playback. And, yes, it still acts like your favorite iPod portable media player.