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iPhone 3.2 may have video call, web download hooks

updated 11:35 pm EST, Fri January 29, 2010

New firmware may hide new iPhone features

A late discovery tonight has showed that iPhone 3.2 may hold the basic structure for features that could ultimately reach future iPhones, including video calling. Claimed "extremely trusted" sources for Engadget say the firmware holds but doesn't expose code to accept a video call as well as to flip the orientation of the video feed, presumably for it to make sense in a conversation.

It also has the option of running the video in a small portion of the screen and could potentially multitask, though whether this is evidence of preparation for true multitasking isn't certain. Apple has regularly given its own apps permission to run in the background, but they have so far never sat on top of other software.

A well known iPhone firmware cracker, chpwn, has also clarified some of the features of the shared file area and other aspects of the OS. He notes that the firmware should allow downloading files, such as from Safari, and sharing them with other apps. The move would address a common complaint of would-be converts from Symbian and Windows Mobile, both of which often allow downloading non-image files.

Other key revelations bring word that the support for hardware keyboards and a landscape-oriented home screen should carry over to the iPhone and likely iPod touch, not just the iPad. It may also be the case that the customizable home screen background image will reach other handhelds.

Features like SMS messaging and phone support are also present in the iPad in rough form, though it's not known for certain if the iPad's 3G chipset can also process voice calls or is limited to data. Most data-only modems can still send SMS and MMS.

The information found so far hints that the iPad and the 3.2 firmware are only interim steps for Apple towards a more comprehensive update in 4.0, which has a high probability of shipping this year. In 2008 and 2009, Apple held special events in March to preview upcoming major revisions of the iPhone OS and often put out the final release at or shortly after WWDC in late spring or early summer.


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Comments

  1. MyRightEye

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Apr 2008

    0

    If only it had...

    A camera plus cell phone, I would pay $1000 for it.

    But because it has neither, I am sticking to the $499 model.

    Come on Apple, let me lose my laptop and iPhone and carry just one device.

  1. MyJelleo

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Jan 2010

    +4

    comment title

    I don't know when it will finally sink in for consumers, but the iPad was never meant to replace a laptop or your iPhone. The keynote specifically states that it was supposed to fall in the middle. It's also obvious in the price ranges - $499 to 829. If someone wants something cheaper than 499, smaller, and also does less, they can purchase either an iPhone or iPod Touch. If they want something that does multitasking and provides more freedom with their OS, they can pay $100 more and get a Macbook. This is the purpose in the iPad's life. Don't get me wrong, there's certain things that it's missing that I want (i.e. a camera). But the iPad as a whole will provide me with all the tools I've wanted in a portable device: ease of surfing the web, ease of using basic apps like the calendar, mail, and productivity suites. All the bitching on the web is by the idiots who want this thing to be a full fledged laptop and who want it to be cheaper. Uneducated consumers will never be happy until the product is free and can do everything they could ever dream of. h*** even then they will have something to b**** about.

  1. iphonerulez

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Nov 2008

    +3

    I doubt that there'll be one device that

    satisfies everyone. It would be nice if you could use an iPad as a phone in a pinch, but carrying an iPad to handle most of your phone calls seems unlikely. People are really asking a lot from the iPad. Did tablets always have the ability to replace everything else? I think Apple's iPad will be very useful for some things but that's about it. I only wish it could handle Flash with the ability to turn it on and off. That's the only way Apple can claim a full browsing experience. Other than that one thing, the iPad is perfect for me.

    Apple is going to sell an awful lot of iPads despite its early weaknesses.

  1. SJU87

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Feb 2010

    0

    What happened to FM

    A couple months ago it was revealed that there is an FM chip in the iPhone that has never been activated. When is that supposed to happen?

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