iPhone 2.0 Ready To Rock

June 11, 2008
David Schloss, Technology Editor

Apple took the wraps off the long-discussed iPhone firmware 2.0 at their annual World Wide Developer Conference in San Francisco this week. The update, which will be free to iPhone owners and $9.95 to iPod Touch owners brings a number of new features to the phone, most important of which is the ability to purchase and install programs for the phone, without hacking.

A number of new programs were on display at the announcement, including Super Monkey Ball and a host of great-looking games, applications for social networking, programs for blogging and more. Of particular note to photographers is the new native iPhone application for the Associated Press, which will be bringing video and photo feeds to the device and will allow people to submit story leads directly from the phone—citizen journalism at its best.

For the suit-and-tie crowd the new iPhone software will be a hit, featuring the ability to sync automatically with Entourage servers for instantaneous communications between desktops, laptops and the phone. Administrators will even be able to push out programs to the phones, installing software on up to 100 devices at a time.

If that's not drool worthy enough (and for me it would have been) Apple also took the wraps off a new model of the iPhone. While similar in dimension to the original phone, the new mode features 3G network (much, much faster than the Edge technology in the first gen iPhone) as well as a GPS receiver for navigation and other location based services.

Since one of the bigger roadblocks to the purchase of the iPhone has been the price of the device itself, the company also announced that it'll be dropping the price of the phone—in half.

8GB iPhones will cost $199, with 16GB units ringing up at just $299. To put that into perspective, that puts the iPhone into a price-competition with devices like the Motorola Razr and other phones that provide just a fraction of the features and aren't backed by a soon to be huge development community.

I was one of those geeks who stood in line for the original iPhone (one of the best uses of my time, ever) and will be out there again, come July 11th, when the next iPhone goes on sale. Since the new super-phone will come in both black and white versions, my next purchase will come with some more choices.

The latest addition to the PDN family, the PDN Gear Guide in print, has a total circulation of 30,000, and covers the latest and greatest in photographic equipment. Initially created in 2006 to be the official guide to PDN's annual flagship photography event, PDN PhotoPlus International Conference + Expo, the PDN Gear Guide is now also available online for gear news and updates 365 days a year.
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