Its has been hard to stay away from all the rumors about the imminent launch of the 3G iPhone.
However, not any longer as the pre-release version of iPhone firmware 2.0 included in the latest Apple iPhone SDK Beta 5 (Build 5a274D) which is currently available only to members of the iPhone developer program has revealed that Apple is planning to release the long awaited 3G iPhone soon probably as early as June just like the rumors have indicated.
The pre-release version of iPhone firmware 2.0 included in the latest Apple iPhone SDK Beta 4 (Build 5A258F) which is currently available only to members of the iPhone developer program has revealed a preference screen that allows users of the new model to disable the 3G Radio and fall back to GPRS/EDGE because the faster service "decreases battery life".
Someone has also confirmed this news by claiming that the latest Beta 5 iPhone Network.plist file contains 3G preferences.
This confirms Apple’s plan to release 3G iPhone most probably in June when iPhone firmware 2.0 is released to iPhone users. I guess its safe to now expect Steve Jobs to announce the next version of the iPhone during Apple’s World Developer Conference starting on June 9th.
You can checkout the screenshot of the preference screen below:
This is what Steve Jobs had to say about 3G in September 2007:
"Um, the 3G chip sets that are available now to semiconductors work reasonably well, except for power. They’re real power hogs, so as you know, the handset battery lives used to be sorta in the 5 to 6 hour range for, uh, uh, GSM and when we got to 3G they got cut in half, right. Most phones now have a battery life of 2 to 3 hours. And that’s due to these very power hungry 3G chipsets.
And the problem is, we just, our phone has battery life of 8 hours, this is of talk time, I’m talking about, not standby time, standby time is a few hundred hours, but for talk time, most 3G phones are 2 to 3 hours. We got a 8 hour talk time phone. That’s really important when you start to use the internet and you want to use your phone to listen to music. So if you only have a 2 and a half hour talk time on your phone, you’re not going to use it for the internet, you’re not going to listen to music on it, because you’ll be afraid to drain the battery and miss that important call that’s going to come in.
So we got to see the battery life for 3G get up back up into the 5 plus hour range before it’s really suitable for this and I think, uh, and I think we’ll see that hopefully, ya know, late next year…"
So based on Steve Jobs comments we can expect the 3G iPhone to have higher capacity batteries and probably 3G chip set with improved energy consumption so that the battery life on the next generation iPhone with 3G lasts as long as the current iPhone’s battery life over Edge and lasts longer when 3G is disabled using the preference screen.
The pre-release version of iPhone firmware 2.0 has already revealed quite a few hidden features:
- Chinese Handwriting Recognition Feature
- Ability to Save Images from Email Attachments
- Save Images straight from iPhone’s Safari browser
- Contact Search and Embedded YouTube Support coming to the iPhone
- Import SIM Contacts feature
What do you think?