Apple iPhone released

10 01 2007

It’s the big news all over the world – Steve Jobs announced Apple’s new iPhone a few hours ago, and it’s beautiful, functional and sexy as anything ever created by Apple to date. They’ve removed all of the external input keys used by most phones, leaving a very smart, large (3.5 inch high resolution) touch screen, which interprets gestures on the screen with multiple fingers, orients itself to landscape or portrait depending on how you hold the phone, and switches off touch-sensitivity when you hold it hear your face. Despite the large, high-res LCD screen (the “most gorgeous ever“), Jobs has assured 5 hours of talk/internet time on the device, which includes GPRS/EDGE, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity.

iphonespecs.jpg

What’s also interesting to me is that the device runs Mac OS X – which enables the phone to run miniature applications or “widgets” that can talk to the phone, and to each other. From my own R&D, this is a perfect architecture for enabling the building of Mobile Learning environments – imagine a learner building their own mobile learning platform using small, smart, internet-connected tools as building blocks, where the blocks talk to each other to create a more seamless and powerful user experience.

Despite the potential of the new platform, I’ve already heard a few complaints about the touch-screen nature of the phone, and I understand those views – for example, that without the tactile feedback of hard keys, it’s very difficult to access the phone while driving; but for those times when we’re not controlling a vehicle or operating heavy machinery, it’s likely that the touch screen interface won’t be such a problem.

The only premium features not incoporated into the handset seem to be 3G connectivity (which would be handy for internet browsing, particularly) and GPS, which I could see working beautifully in the iPhone, which, by all accounts, provides the most wonderful Google Maps experience on a mobile device – basically, just like the desktop version:

mwk325wm.jpg

You can even switch from map to photo mode, just like the desktop version:

mwk331wm.jpg

Here’s the full specs:

Screen size: 3.5 inches

Screen resolution: 320 by 480 at 160 ppi

Input method: Multi-touch

Operating system: OS X

Storage: 4GB or 8GB

GSM: Quad-band (MHz: 850, 900, 1800, 1900)

Wireless data: Wi-Fi (802.11b/g) + EDGE + Bluetooth 2.0

Camera: 2.0 megapixels

Battery: Up to 5 hours Talk / Video / Browsing, Up to 16 hours Audio playback

Dimensions: 4.5 x 2.4 x 0.46 inches

Weight: 4.8 ounces / 135 grams

It’s slightly longer than an iPod, but not as wide, and about the same thickness, hence Apple calling it a “Widescreen iPod” in their official press release. When it’s released in June, initially in the USA, pricing will be US$499 for an iPhone with 4GB of Flash memory, or US$599 for an iPhone with 8GB. I’m definitely looking forward to this hitting Australian shelves, hopefully later this year… 🙂

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5 responses

10 01 2007
Jerry Leeson

Hi Leonard – good article.
Your not condoning dialling while driving are you? 😉

14 01 2007
16 01 2007
Sam

Hi, Just one problem.
Apple says it is discouraging 3rd party apps, which means the mobile learning content if any will be provided only by Apple, if ever. Not very encouraging….

26 01 2007
Mike

Really pricey, I was wanting to get one but I’ve sort of been thrown off. Can you play widescreen videos on this, and normal aspect depending on how you’re holding it?

19 08 2007
jibin

ssdf

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