The new iPhone 3G S, which will be on sale Friday, is already in high demand. According to InformationWeek, Apple and ATT&T have already sold out their allotment of pre-order units for the June 19 launch. Those who ordered after June 13 may have to wait one or two weeks to receive their iPhone.
TidBITS has a great article on the eligibility criteria for getting the lowest subsidized price for the new iPhone 3G S. While no one knows all of the criteria, the article explains that it's not simply how long you've had your phone. Another factor, for example, is your account history — and how promptly you pay your bill. Also, the article points out that their system sometimes makes mistakes, and that the only way you can be sure you're getting the lowest possible price is to call AT&T.
Tripwolf is a free app just released last week that gives you travel guides for over 500,000 destinations worldwide, combining info from professional travel guide publishers and user-contributed information. The app limits you to having three destinations on your iPhone at one time. And while the guides for major cities have a considerable amount of information, lesser destinations, such as Kansas City, Missouri, or Des Moines, Iowa, only have a basic info page and a listing of accommodations. You can access the guides online, or you can download them for offline access later.
Macworld has a great article titled "iPhone 3G S: What you need to know." It highlights the significant new features: speed, better gaming experience, camera, voice control, etc. And it answers commonly asked questions. Best of all, the article has a list of features unique to the iPhone 3G S and discusses some of them. These are features you'll get with the new phone that you won't have even if you upgrade your older iPhone with the new iPhone 3.0 software. See the list after the break:
Postcards — how quaint. Yet if you're on some distant shore and you'd like to send a quick photo taken with your iPhone to someone who doesn't have e-mail, HazelMail Postcards is the ticket. The new app, launched yesterday, instantly turns your photo into a personalized postcard, and the prints the card, puts a stamp on it, and mails it for you.
As discussed in a previous post, if you still have a lot of time on your contract, you'll pay more than $199/$299 for a new iPhone 3G S. (I did read, though, that an exception is being made for those who bought their iPhone 3G less than a month before the announcement.) If you are indeed eligible for the lowest subsidized price, or if you're going to bite the bullet and get a new 3G S even though you'll have to pay a couple hundred more, then the question arises what to do with your old iPhone. Gazelle will buy it from you. A company rep told me that in 2009 they've paid an average of $153 for used iPhones.
Because the cost of the iPhone is subsidized and the cost recouped by AT&T via the monthly plan, they're not selling the new iPhone 3GS to those who bought an iPhone in the past year or so at the subsidized price of $199/$299. If you want the latest and greatest, you may have to pay $399/$499 depending on which model you get. You can read more in an article in TidBITs. By the way, this article offers the best overview I've seen of the new iPhone.
Today's keynote at the major developers' conference was filled with news, including the announcement that the new iPhone 3.0 software will be out on June 17. You can read more on Yahoo Tech. Apple senior vice president of iPhone software Scott Forstall used his keynote presentation to demo some of the 100 new features of iPhone 3.0. That includes copy and paste, landscape mode in all key applications, peer-to-peer Bluetooth-based multiplayer gaming, push notification, and more. Also announced was a new iPhone — the iPhone 3G S, which will be available June 19. You can read a nice overview on iLounge and a longer description in the press release. The "S" in the name stands for "speed."
Everyone is looking to Monday's developers meeting when Apple is expected to tell us when the new iPhone 3.0 software will be available. One revolutionary new feature will be "in-app payments." You can read more on CNet. This is yet another brilliant move from Apple. The grail on the Internet has been monetization — how do you make money from what you offer? And the challenge has been to make things cheap enough. From what I understand, a credit card transaction costs around $3. So if you're selling something for a buck, someone is losing money. That's one reason why PayPal has been such a big success. "Micropayments" would be the answer to so many issues.
If you're an iPod Touch user, you need not be incommunicado. If you're in the vicinity of a Wi-Fi hotspot, you can use your device to make calls, including calls to landline and cell phones. In this review in the Wall Street Journal, Walt Mossberg tests three apps — all FREE — that let you make calls without needing $70/month phone service like your iPhone brethren.