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iPhone, Version 3.0, Revealed

Mike Musgrove

Apple showed off everything from a blood pressure monitor to the latest version of The Sims at an event today where the company revealed new features and software for the iPhone.

The latest version of the iPhone's software, version 3.0, launches this summer. And yes, at least one rumor was correct: The smartphone's new software will indeed finally allow users to cut, copy and paste text from one place to another.

Apple's "App Store" has seen over 800 million downloads, the company said, and there are 25,000 applications available on iTunes for use on the iPhone or iPod Touch.

Look for new types of pricing on software bought from the company's iTunes store. Under the latest software tools, developers will be able to sell their products through the store on a subscription basis, for example. Or, game designers will be able to sell new levels of their videogames, one or two levels at a time, if they choose.

And with new developer tools, software designers will be able to pull more information from other parts of your iPhone. In that upcoming handheld version of The Sims, for example, your virtual people will be able to listen to music from your iTunes collection.

The biggest share of the applications available at iTunes have been games or entertainment-related widgets, but it looks like Apple is also encouraging the development of more serious-minded products. Scott Forstall, senior vice president of iPhone software, showed off an iPhone-compatible blood pressure monitor and an iPhone-compatible device that diabetic users can use to monitor their glucose level. Database company Oracle doesn't often join Apple on the stage, but an executive from the business software company gave a short demonstration of some iPhone-compatible Oracle tools.

I'm looking forward to getting the latest iPhone OS on my own iPhone tonight. Anybody out there have early thoughts about 3.0 yet? (As of this writing, Apple executives are still talking up the latest features.)

By Mike Musgrove  |  March 17, 2009; 2:40 PM ET  | Category:  Mike Musgrove
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Well, yes. The one feature I'd like is one I'm sure I'll not get: the ability to work with the Verizon network.

Until then, no iPhone for me.

Posted by: seahawkdad | March 17, 2009 3:24 PM

It looks like a solid update. They have addressed many of the long standing feature requests from iPhone users. The app store is also evolving in order to make it more flexible for developers to upgrade their apps and to charge for downloadable content. The changes to the built-in applications should make the phone easier to use and more flexible in terms of working with the servers that business users in particular already own.

It is great that most of the features will be supported on the first generation iPhone. It will be interesting to see what hardware improvements they come up with later this summer to entice those users to upgrade.

Working with Verizon would require a hardware update so isn't something that would be announced at this software event, even if it was in the works.

Posted by: fletc3her | March 17, 2009 3:32 PM

Still no MMS messaging???

Posted by: buryyourduke | March 17, 2009 3:39 PM

How about a small hardware upgrade? The embedded microphone on the iPhone earbuds always catches on my shirt or jacket. I'd like them to make a new one with smoothed edges that blend with the wire so it stops catching on my clothes. Nothing major, but I can't be the only person this happens to.

Posted by: carloz0 | March 17, 2009 3:41 PM

MMS is included in the new update:

Posted by: ArlingtonVA3 | March 17, 2009 3:41 PM

Will it ever work on the Sprint network?

Posted by: edlharris | March 17, 2009 3:43 PM

When, oh when, will I be able to buy an iPhone here in the US from the Apple Store and use it anywhere in the world? Or at least most places in the world? I'm moving to Europe this summer -- I can either buy one here that I can't use in Germany for three years or buy one there that I can't use here when I come back to visit. When is that going to change?

Posted by: khakidiplomat | March 17, 2009 4:12 PM

The biggest plus for me is something you didn't mention - cut and paste. It IS included I hope?

Posted by: apan1 | March 17, 2009 4:17 PM

It's a two-step process to answer the phone, turn it on or off. After the user powers on the phone (1st step), the user must slide the slider bar to engage the phone on or off (2nd step). Why is this extra step required? I hope the slider bar goes away or, at least, give the users the option disable that feature with Version 3.0.

Posted by: ginouye | March 17, 2009 4:29 PM

can you use the iphone as a high speed wireless link
for a laptop?

i'm paying for a 3G card and a phone, it would sure
save a lot to have one device that does both

Posted by: patb | March 17, 2009 6:02 PM

Is there a Sirius app in the works??? I would def. buy the darn thing if I could get my Howard Stern fix on it!!!!!!

Posted by: BrightwoodLiving | March 17, 2009 6:30 PM

I just moved from a Palm Treo to an iPhone in January. Cut and paste is a feature that I miss dearly. Looking forward to this software upgrade.

Posted by: cre8ivcan | March 17, 2009 11:27 PM

PatB: being able to use the bluetooth in the smartphone for something more than a mono headset would be a big win for me too. That was the only thing I regretted losing when I switched from a Smartphone to the iPhone; the full bluetooth implementation. Stereo headphones, network interface, file transfer .. why only headsets?

Actually I do understand and I reservedly approve; the Apple Way is to go with basic functionality and do it perfectly, as opposed to the Microsoft Way, which is to toss in a lot of features and complexities of limited usefullness but standing square in the way of the features that everyone wants.

Not many people would use additional bluetooth features, stereo headphones excepted (and I have a Sony dongle that adds this capability and it works great). Most people would balk at connecting it to a laptop. And not many people can navigate a file system.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | March 18, 2009 1:03 AM

God I hope they also add wide layout keyboard for E-Mail, SMS and MMS.

Posted by: JimGoldbloom1 | March 18, 2009 1:58 PM

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