Considering they only do one phone, the amount of attention drawn to the Apple iPhone is quite surprising, and at this time of year the Apple rumour mill kicks into overdrive. Apple are well known for introducing yearly updates for most of its products. The iPod for example has been updated around September almost every year since its introduction. It seems as though Apple are keen to follow in the iPod’s footsteps by announcing a new iPhone around June/July. We had the first generation iPhone announced in July 2007, and the current iPhone 3G was announced last June at their annual Developers Conference (WWDC).
Apple have just announced that this years Developers Conference is scheduled for the 8th June, and its already been discovered in the code of the new iPhone 3.0 operating system that there could be 2 new iPhones and 2 new iPod Touch models being announced. So what are we likely to see?
Our money is on the announcement of the iPhone Pro and iPhone Mini, and the renaming of the current iPhone to iPhone Classic.
The current iPhone has been a massive success for Apple, and I can’t see them finishing it any time soon – having said that, stores around the world are already beginning to clear out their stock rooms to make room for the new models that will no doubt be on sale in July. I’m expecting to see an increase in storage on the iPhone 3G, along with a few other minor changes (OLED Display improved battery, improved camera), but overall the appearance of the phone isn’t going to change much.
Rumours of an iPhone Pro have been around since the iPhone 3G was released, if not before. Reasons behind wanting the iPhone Pro vary greatly, but the main one seems to be that hard core business user miss the presence of a physical keyboard, and while the on-screen keyboard is good, some say it can take up too much screen space, limiting what you can do. Being a slightly larger device, an iPhone Pro would be expected to have more powerful processors, and be able to support an iPhone version of Apple’s Office software iWork, giving them the chance to be able to be much more productive when out of the office. Other additions would be a forward facing camera for video chat, along with support for iChat, an OLED display, improved camera and battery life.
Several website have created mock-ups of what they would like to see as the next iPhone. 9to5mac.com have a collection of ten of the best mock ups and Matt Brady’s concept also gets a lot of attention. Our attempt at an iPhone Pro Concept is shown above, click on the image for a larger version.
There has been lots of talk in the past of an iPhone Nano, but the whole concept of the iPod Nano is that they’re unbelievably small, and given how much Apple (and everyone else) seems to love the iPhone operating system, I don’t think they’re going to change it as drastically as they would need to in order to make a really small touchscreen phone. Apple themselves have said that by making the screen smaller, it would cause problems with 3rd party apps, as well as usability. Having said that, surely if they were to increase the screen resolution, they could reduce the screen size a little, without causing too many problems? It wouldn’t surprise me either if the iPhone Mini had less features than the Classic or the Pro. To appeal to a new market, they would need a phone with a lower price point – to do that would mean cutting out a few features (GPS, App Store, Internet). Having said that the App Store and Internet Access are two of the iPhones big selling points, so I’d be surprised if they do.
iPhone 3.0 Software:
Regardless of the hardware that gets announced, pretty much every iPhone user is looking forward to the release of the latest version of the iPhone 3.0 Software. This update will add features that many say should have been on the iPhone since its launch back in 2007. Features such as MMS, Stereo Bluetooth, the ability to search your phone, forward messages and share contacts are features that are standard on most other phones on the market, but these are only just finding their way onto the iPhone.
The announcement earlier this month by Apple certainly got a lot of media attention, and a large round of applause from developers, but I can’t help thinking that they held back on something – Apple have another trick up their sleeve that they’ve not shared yet, something that relies on hardware in the new iPhones. I might be wrong, but from what I’ve seen in the past, Apple never reveal all their cards and are well know for saying “One Last Thing” at the end of their big announcements, and surprising most people with something unexpected.
Well, that’s what we think. What about you? What do you want to see the next version of the iPhone? Is the screen size/resolution theory a possibility? Will we get 2 new iPhones? What surprises do you think Apple have up their sleeve? Leave your thoughts below or discuss it on our Forums