updated 03:15 pm EDT, Mon June 9, 2008
Apple today unveiled its highly anticipated iPhone 3G. The device "climbs the next mountain" of requiring fast mobile data as well as reducing the price. The connection is the most important feature and downloads websites 2.8 times faster than an iPhone on EDGE; it's also faster versus rival 3G-capable devices like the Nokia N95, according to Apple. E-mail also transfers more quickly and approaches Wi-Fi speeds, the company says. Despite the higher-power Internet connection, the device can last for 5 hours of 3G talk time and 10 hours of 2G -- up from 8 hours on 2G. Browsing is the same at between 5-6 hours, while video and audio playback have been upgraded to 7 and 24 hours respectively.
GPS is also built into the device and can combine with cell tower triangulation and Wi-Fi to help locate an iPhone. The feature allows real-time positioning in Google Maps.
The device is even thinner at the edges and has a full plastic back for improve reception, but with solid metal buttons; the headphone jack is flush to allow any device. Audio quality is also improved, the company says.
iPhone 2.0 software is preloaded on the device and includes access to the App Store, Exchange data support using ActiveSync, parental controls, and native support for iWork and Office files. The iPhone 3G integrates directly with Apple's new Mobile Me service to share calendars, contacts, photos, and iDisk information in real-time between computers, iPhones, and iPod touch devices.
The device will be available in 70 countries and will sell for $199 for an 8GB model -- $200 less than the original. There will also be a 16GB model for $299. Versions will be available in black and white. The phone is available through the online Apple Store and will ship to 22 countries on July 11th, with more following afterwards.