I was told when I was a kid we’d have flying cars by now. Well, no flying cars. There’s also been persistent rumors of a Verizon iPhone. Screwed again. That’s a shame too, because the specs for the new iPhone are impressive. The 3GS wasn’t enough to compel me to upgrade from my 3G, but the 4G iPhone is something I’d love to upgrade to now. The specs from today’s WWDC:
- Thinner, though slightly heavier than the 3GS, but with stainless steel construction which doubles as an antenna for the radio equipment.
- 326 ppi display running at 960×640. This I have to see. It’s shocking to me how much better Bitter’s Droid screen looks over my 3G, but this leapfrogs the Droid, which has a 256 ppi display at 854 x 480 resolution.
- Forward facing camera, finally, along with a standard rear facing with a 5 megapixel display and LED flash, similar to what the Droid has.
- Uses the Apple A4 processor, which runs at a 1GHz. It’s the same one the iPad uses, and the iPad is fast. This eliminates one of my primary complaints about the 3G, which is that it’s slow enough to make browsing painful. The 3G is powered by a Samsung ARM CPU at 412 MHz, the 3GS by a 600MHz version. Bitter’s Droid is powered by a chip similar to the A4, the TI OMAP3, which is an ARM CPU running at 550MHz, with a graphics unit running at 430MHz.
- Much better battery life. Apple is claiming 300 hours of standby time, 40 hours of music, 10 hours video, 10 hours of browing over Wifi, or 6 hours over 3G, and 7 hours of talk time. That’s pretty impressive. A lot of that is because the A4 processor sips power.
- Apple has finally untied multitasking. Jailbroken phones have been doing this for a while, and the underlying OS, being MacOS, has always been capable of doing it. But previous iPhone OSes have disallowed it because of battery life concerns.
It’s a good release. Apple needed to leap over the competing smart phones rather than merely match them, and so far it looks like they’ve done it. You can bet the competition will be out with bigger and better versions of their products, but it’s a compelling reason to upgrade. The question is, am I willing to put up with another two years of AT&T? Their upgrade offers are attractive, but I’d hate to take the bait, and then find out there’s a Verizon iPhone in early 2011. But perhaps the Verizon iPhone is the modern day flying car after all, and I’ll just be stuck with outdated technology for no good reason. It’s a difficult call.