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Key software and hardware updates may be coming for the iPhone

DailyTech previously reported that Apple would soon be previewing the 3.0 version of its iPhone OS to the tech community.  With Apple's smartphone well positioned in the market, posting some of the strongest hardware sales of last year, the release of a new OS is a big event.  Many are hoping that the new OS will hint at new hardware or will offer some of the basic functionality like copy and paste which Apple has long denied its users.

The copy and paste rumors in particular are picking up steam.  Digg's Kevin Rose, a past clairvoyant with Apple predictions, claims to have the scoop on copy and paste.  He makes unconfirmed claims that copy/cut and paste will be implemented in the 3.0 OS.  The process, summarized on a Gizmodo blog is:

Cut and paste in 3.0:
- Users magnify or double tap a word to bring up cut and paste
- Pinch "boundaries" to select word(s); Rose called them "copy boundaries"
- Then you get option to cut, paste or copy

It is also rumored that MMS and video messaging will not be supported in the new OS.  Rumors about these features have been propagating for the last couple weeks, but recent reports from inside sources indicate that these desirable features are unfortunately not to be.

Another top rumor is that new hardware may be in the mix.  This rumor is fueled by the fact that every past x.0 iPhone OS release has corresponded to a new hardware release.  Many are speculating that a 32 GB iPhone will be released as a 32 GB iPod Touch already exists.  Further, some are going as far as to speculate that new processors/casing/etc. may be in the mix as well.

Finally, there are rumors about Apple tweaking how its applications run.  Apps have been a pillar of the iPhone 3G's wild success, but currently only one app can be active at a time.  According to Kevin Rose, the ability to have other apps running in the background will not be supported.  Apple has long said this is the case due to memory limitations.  However, the rumor is still popping up that Apple may support background operation for a limited number of apps.

Others are claiming Apple will institute a slightly different scheme -- push notifications.  This feature would allow non-running apps like IM clients to receive and display notifications (i.e. a popup when a new IM is received).  This would be one possible way of getting around the background limitations, possibly without using as much memory.

Ultimately, the iPhone 3.0 OS is Apple's chance to prove itself the superior competitor to the much anticipated Palm Pre phone.  While it is seemingly increasingly unlikely that Apple will be able to kill the multi-touch Pre with litigation (Apple has a rather ambiguous patent on multi-touch, while the Pre is the first smart phone outside the iPhone to support it), Apple must seek to take it on by offering better features. 

Whether Apple can deliver on such features is intimately attached to the capabilities of the new OS.  However, at this point these capabilities remain unsubstantiated rumors, and cannot be fairly judged.

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By omnicronx on 3/16/2009 5:08:50 PM , Rating: 2
I was not aware of all the changes that went in to the 2g (quite impressive actually, aside from the lack of basic smart phone features). You seem to be one of the smart people that is not going to go out and buy a new iPhone, even though you already have one. This is all I (and i think FT) was trying to get across. You would not believe how many people bought another iPhone for what was essentially just to get 3g speeds.

I don't care who you are, or how much money you have, that is not a good investment.

By Sazar on 3/16/2009 6:45:39 PM , Rating: 2
Except for the fact that the majority of owners who already have the first gen simply sold it for the same price (the market was HOT for 1G iPhones) and purchased or, in many cases, paid $50 upgrade for the new phone.

Also, the list is not that impressive from what the end-user actually experienced. The 3G capabilities were abysmal to begin with, although now they have been improved dramatically. And battery life didn't improve noticeably till the last couple of updates.

Personally, the 3G phone is much better than the first gen and was worth the purchase due to the better speakerphone, GPS and higher bandwidth capabilities.

If I had a slow computer and new hardware came out to make it faster, I would buy it. The phone itself wasn't faster but the ability to get data over 3G (for Orb or Safari) was much much faster and for me was worth the price :)

I cannot tell you how frustrating it is to surf over Edge.

"Nowadays you can buy a CPU cheaper than the CPU fan." -- Unnamed AMD executive

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