I must admit to being pretty excited about this. The iPhone 3G is already a good mobile device and it is about to get better.
Here are the main changes along with my thoughts on them:
Copy and Paste – Finally! I can’t believe we’ve had to wait so long for such basic functionality. Better late than never I suppose. Hopefully Apple’s implementation will be better than the rather poor third party offerings I’ve seen.
Landscape Keyboard – the wide keyboard is to be available in SMS, email and probably other apps. Personally, I liek to use the portrait mode keyboard anyway, so no big deal for me. I know a lot of people have been wanting this and having the option can only be a good thing.
Mail App – there is a great deal that Apple could do to improve the lame email application. There are supposed to be some improvements, but I don’t believe full details are yet released. Come on Apple! If you are serious about selling the iPhone as a business tool, a better mail app is essential. I’d love to have a third party choice such as the excellent email app from WebIS.
Calendar – the current Calendar app for the iPhone is OK (just). I believe there are going to be some improvements, but I’m not sire what exactly.You know what, I don’t care. Whatever Apple decides to do with the iPhone Calendar app, I’m going to be using Pocket Informant which is going to be much much better.
Search – we are promised a better search system that can actually search the whole device.
Push Notifications – Finally, we should be getting what has been standard on most smartphones for years.
BlueTooth – It is looking as though Apple have woken up to the fact that BlueTooth can do more than just allow a wireless earpiece. We are getting A2DP support (for stereo music over BT) as well as the ability to use BT for games and other apps. I’d live to be able to use a small BT keyboard (Like the old Stowaway ones for Pocket PC. This would make iPhone the perfect note taking machine) but this isn’t confirmed.
Better GPS – Turn by turn directions like every other GPS device in the world? Yes!!
MMS – no biggie for me because I have no interest in sending pics over text. My 15 year old daughter on the other hand is always complaining that her friends cheapo cellphones do this but her iPhone can’t. So she’ll be happy, but her dad will be pissed if AT&T see this as yet another excuse to charge more.
Tethering – another feature that every smartphone has other than iPhone. Currently those wanting to use the phone as a modem have to use jailbroken apps to do so. It seems that Apple will be providing the means to tether without jailbreaking. Again, I expect good old AT&T to be demanding $$ for this feature, if they allow it at all.
Apple claims that there are over 100 improvements in total so it will be really interesting to get to try them out. We won’t get the chance for a few months unfortunately.
All in all, some great new features. The more cynical will say that Apple could have easily implemented most of these from day one and it was only the threat of competition that made them give in to user demands. In anycase, I really like my iPhone today so I’m looking forward to it getting better in the near future.