Steve Jobs was on stage at Macworld 2007 just some time ago and he officially introduced the iPhone that everyone has been yearning for for years.
The iPhone is being described as a widescreen, touch-controlled iPod, a mobile phone and an ‘internet communicator’, all rolled into one device.
The iPhone runs a version of OS X, allowing for full fledged apps to be created for the phone, rather than the limited versions of other mobile phone applications.
The iPhone is a fully touch screen device with no keys at all or even a stylus. The screen is a large, 3.5cm one with a high resolution. It uses Apple’s new, patented ‘multi-touch’ input method that supposedly prevents any accidental touches or presses, boasting of a new level of accuracy with touch input.
When required, a full QWERTY keypad is displayed on the screen, similar to Windows Mobile or Symbian UIQ phones, but this one supposedly is easier to type on, automatically eliminating any mistakes you may make from typing.
The iPhone has interesting features such as iTunes’ CoverFlow running on the phone in widescreen mode. It can play not only music, but also videos and photos. Photos can be zoomed in or out by using finger gestures such as moving them closer together or away from each other.
The device seems a little large in the hands, but it’s ultra slim at just 11.6mm, which is thinner than the RAZR. It comes with a standard 3.5mm stereo headphones jack and a built-in speaker. It has the iPod connector to sync with iTunes on the PC or Mac. It will come with a wired, stereo headset and also a Bluetooth headset.
The iPhone also has a 2 megapixel digital camera built into the device.
There’s a choice of 4GB or 8GB of space available on the iPhone to use. There is no option of adding any extra memory via memory card slots.
The iPhone is a quad-band GSM device with EDGE support. Unfortunately, there is no 3G/WCDMA support, which would have been expected of a device being touted as ‘revolutionary’. It also runs Safari, the web browser, for full HTML support. The phone comes with Google Maps built-in.
Email is covered by a POP3/IMAP client. They’ve mentioned support for Microsoft Exchange as well, but that may just be over IMAP. Yahoo will be providing free push-IMAP email to iPhone customers, giving them BlackBerry-like features.
Personal and local connectivity is handled by Bluetooth 2.0 and WiFi support.
The device is expected to offer around 5 hours of talk time and 16 hours of music playback time.
The iPhone will be available this June, exclusively on Cingular in the US. The 4GB version will cost $499 (Rs. 22,500) and the 8GB version will cost $599 (Rs. 26,700).