Boom! iPhone Rocks Tech World

At the Steve Jobs keynote speech at Macworld this morning PST, he
announced
“three revolutionary new products”. An iPod, a phone, an internet mobile
communicator. But turns out it’s all one device: the fabled iPhone!

We’ll have extended
analysis about this later today, but for now let’s review the news. Here’s the feature
list:

  • Instead of a standard keypad, the iPhone uses a patented Apple technology called
    “multi-touch”. It doesn’t use a stylus, has “multi-finger gestures” and claims to ignore
    unintended touches. Jobs compared it to two other revolutionary Apple UIs – the mouse on
    the Macintosh and the click wheel on the iPod.
  • 3.5 inch touchscreen with a virtual keyboard.
  • iPhone runs OS X, Apple’s standard operating system; according to Engadget’s
    superb coverage
    : “It let us create desktop class applications and networking, not the
    cripled stuff you find on most phones, these are real desktop applications.”
  • Syncs with iTunes: “iTunes is going to sync all your media to your iPhone — but also
    a ton of data. Contacts, calendars, photos, notes, bookmarks, email accounts…”
  • Apple’s design chops is all over the iPhone: “3.5-inch screen, highest resolution
    screen we’ve ever shipped, 160ppi. There’s only one button, the “home” button […]
    thinner than any smartphone…”
  • 2 megapixel camera built in
  • Outstanding media features – scroll through your music, widescreen video, album art,
    built-in speaker…
  • Sync your iPhone with your PC or Mac (for contacts etc)
  • Standard phone features – SMS, calendar, photos, etc. With photos there is a motion
    sensor that rotates photos when you turn the phone.
  • Visual voicemail
  • Rich HTML emails – works with any IMAP or POP3 email service. This spells trouble for
    Blackberry!
  • The Safari browser runs on iPhone – “it’s the first fully-usable browser on a
    cellphone.” Jobs shows the NYT running in the iPhone – the actual website, not a puny WAP
    version.
  • Google Maps
  • Widgets that connect to Internet seamlessly (via WiFi and EDGE)
  • Free “push” IMAP email from Yahoo

In terms of phone dimensions, iPhone is a quad-band GSM + EDGE phone (no 3G, notes Engadget). It has
WiFi and Bluetooth 2.0.

Apple + Google + Yahoo

Google CEO Eric Schmidt
and Yahoo co-founder Jerry Yang both made an appearance in Steve Jobs’ keynote. Schmidt is an
Apple board member and had this to say:

“From a google perspective we’ve pushed very hard to partner with Apple and working
with many many different data service — Steve showed a little bit. It comes together
seamlessly. This is the first of a whole new generation…”

Jerry Yang then said:

“One of the things we’re going to be doing is launching some of our new services ,
Yahoo Go and One Search on this phone. Mail is a killer app on the phone, Yahoo is trying
to redesign the web and email experience on mobile devices.”

Summary

Steve Jobs said about the iPhone: “it’s the internet in your pocket for the first time
ever.” He also called it “the ultimate digital device”. A 4GB model will cost $499 and an
8GB model will retail for $599. It will be available in June in the US (on the Cingular
network), Europe in the 4th quarter, Asia in 2008.

With a desktop-like UI and partnerships with two of the Big 3 Internet companies
(Google and Yahoo), Apple is really upping the ante in the Mobile Web market. I think
this will finally propel mobile Internet into the mainstream. Maybe 2007 will be the year of the
Mobile Web
after all!

iPhone pics: Shht! (second image) and mika li (third).

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