And, when can we get one?
All these questions will be answered soon enough (sometime next month, in fact). But, while there's still time, I'd like to add my two cents -- and suggest some features I'd like to see in Apple's next-generation iPhone.
1.) 3G speeds. This is obvious. The first iPhone used the 2G GPRS data network because it provided the greater speed-vs.-battery life than 3G circuitry at that time. But it's a year later, and 3G technology has improved to the point where differences in network speeds are nearly nonexistent. Maybe, with 3G, iPhones won't find the need to ask if want to connect to a nearby Wi-Fi connection.
2.) Speaking of Wi-Fi, how about VoIP? I know Apple has partnered with
but should it be looking at something like T-Mobile's Hot Spot @Home feature, which automatically connects and routes voice calls over your home or office Wi-Fi network? It would be a great way to get around possible AT&T coverage "dead zones."
3.) Corporate e-mail. The next iPhone needs either
Research In Motion
Exchange mail compatibility. Or both. Many businesses will buy iPhones in bulk as soon as they can be used by executives for their email.
Dear Steve Jobs: iPhone Needs Tweaking
var config = new Array(); config<BRACKET>"videoId"</BRACKET> = 1564516136; config<BRACKET>"playerTag"</BRACKET> = "TSCM Embedded Video Player"; config<BRACKET>"autoStart"</BRACKET> = false; config<BRACKET>"preloadBackColor"</BRACKET> = "#FFFFFF"; config<BRACKET>"useOverlayMenu"</BRACKET> = "false"; config<BRACKET>"width"</BRACKET> = 265; config<BRACKET>"height"</BRACKET> = 255; config<BRACKET>"playerId"</BRACKET> = 1243645856; createExperience(config, 8);
4.) Smaller, lighter, longer. All phones should be smaller, and lighter in weight with improved battery life.
5) More memory. 8GB or 16GB is nice, but 24GB or 32 GB would be better.
6.) Lower prices. If the memory is kept the same, lower the prices. If there's more memory. keep prices the same as they are now. Don't forget, other manufacturers are busy developing competitive, feature-laden designs. too. Think
nuviphone, RIM's Blackberry Bold and Thunder,
Xperia and lots more. They'll try to charge less than whatever numbers Apple decides on.
7.) Better tactile feedback. Technology on the market, such as Neonode's
would be a great addition to the next iPhone.
8.) GPS. Apple included a clever workaround in its first iPhone. Using Google Maps, it was able to create a faux location system for driving directions. But it's no substitute for a real GPS radio built inside to help guide you with real-time instructions.
9.) Live TV. A number of 3G smartphones allow for subscriptions to live TV feed services. As a matter of fact, AT&T has a really nice service which it makes available on other super handsets. The hangup here would be how big of a cut of the profits Apple would want to include the feature.
10.) Live downloads of music and videos. I've heard that Apple is in heavy discussions to get record companies to let Apple allow downloads directly from iTunes to new iPhones. The hangup here is not the technology, but the greed of what's left of record companies. Apple currently pays record companies about 70 cents per song. Those companies actually want more than that for direct downloads. They currently net more than that for small portions of songs downloaded as ring tones. What else do record companies have to bargain with?
11.) eBook reader. My friend Robin says iPhones have the best screen -- just waiting for book downloads. That could mean another revenue stream for Apple's iTunes service.
12.) Cut, copy and paste. Sometimes they come in handy. Especially for enterprise users.
13.) Improved MMS. It would be nice to view and save these messages directly onto the handset. Currently, you need to log in to an AT&T Web site with your special code and password to view the picture, which you can't save too your phone or your PC.
14.) Next-gen Bluetooth. Stereo Bluetooth audio would be nice. So would Bluetooth synching.
15.) More colors. Apple has hit the jackpot with different colors on its iPods. Why not for iPhones, too?
What do you think? Is there anything else you might like to see on the next iPhone?
Gary Krakow is TheStreet.com's senior technology correspondent.