Rabu, 28 Mei 2008

Apples announcement Tuesday that CEO Steve Jobs will keynote the companys Worldwide Developers Conference is fueling speculation that Apple will announce a 3G version of the iPhone. Jobs will speak on Monday, June 9, at 10 a.m. The conference runs June 9-13 in San Francisco.

The timing is certainly right. Rumors have been circulating for most of the year that Apple would release a 3G iPhone in the second half of the year. Those rumors have been stoked by reports that Apple is winding down inventory of the current version. Both the U.S. and British versions of the online Apple Store list the iPhone as currently unavailable.

And sales representatives at Apple retail stores across the country reported the iPhone out of stock. "The iPhone is sold out companywide," a sales representative at the Apple Store in Braintree, Mass., told Computerworld.


"On its own, this means nothing, but we all know that there could never be a major product announcement without Jobs on the stage," Charlie Sorrel wrote on Wireds news site, predicting Jobs would unveil a "proper update to the MacBook Pro line" as well.

The rumor mill has suggested that the price of the new iPhone could be substantially less than the current versions $399 cost.

While the possibility of a 3G iPhone announcement is pure speculation at this point, what is known is that Apple will release version 2.0 of the iPhone software, the final version of the iPhone software developers kit and the App Store, where developers can publish and users can wirelessly download third-party applications.

"I do expect to see a lot of developer focus on the platform and if it werent for the problems with the lines last time, Id be certain there would be lines for the phones again this time," said Rob Enderle, principal analyst at the Enderle Group. "Still, if the price is anywhere near where it is rumored to be, they should set some records if events at the time dont nerf the launch."

This years WWDC features the first-ever session track for iPhone, where developers will learn how to create applications that make use of the iPhone and iPod touchs user interface, three-axis accelerometer and geographic location technology.


Other iPhone sessions will focus on using application-programming interfaces for CoreOS, Core Services, Media and CocoaTouch technologies.

Of course, the iPhone is just one part of WWDC, a sprawling developer conference with 150 sessions. On the Mac track, Apple engineers will present sessions for beginners and experts on OS X Leopard, including interface design and implementation, application frameworks, security, localization and networking.

In a press release, Apple emphasized that attendees can bring their own code and work side-by-side with Apple programmers, learning development methods and best practices to improve their applications.

Apple introduced the software development kit for the iPhone in March and says more than 200,000 developers have downloaded beta versions. When the iPhone 2.0 software is released, the home screen will feature a link to the Apps Store where users can wirelessly download applications, many of which are expected to be free.

The support for third-party applications and the apparent ease with which they will be released to the public suggests that the iPhone will transform from a cool phone into a mobile computing platform. One question, however, is how quickly Apple will be able to refill sales channels with new versions of the device.


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