The iPhone 4 has been finally announced at the WWDC 2010. Steve Jobs himself revealed the new smartphone by Apple: the next iPhone is a 9.3mm thick (a quarter thinner than the iPhone 3GS; “the thinnest smartphone on the planet”, as Jobs said), has glass on front and back (“for better optical quality and scratch resistance”), and stainless steel around. It uses the stainless steel band as part of the antenna system.
“It’s the most precise thing we’ve ever made,” Apple CEO said.
iPhone 4 is powered by the A4 chip (designed ”in house”) and comes with two built-in cameras (one on the front and one on the back with an LED flash), two mics (one for a noise cancellation), micro-SIM (“we needed the space!"), 802.11n WiFi, GPS, compass, accelerometer, Quadband HSDPA/HSUPA, 7.2Mbps and up to 32GB of storage.
The display is a huge innovation: based on new IPS technology ("quite a bit better than OLED"), the 3.5 inch, 960 x 640 Retina Display displays 326 pixels per inch (four times as many pixels as in any standard display) giving us really sharp text and pictures. The contrast ratio is 800:1 (4x better than the 3GS).
Since the battery is now a bit bigger, its life has been improved. Apple says there is 7 hours of 3G talk, 6 hours of 3G browsing, 10 hours of WiFi browsing, 10 hours of video, 40 hours of music and 300 hours of standby.
Another new piece of hardware is a gyroscope with pitch, roll, and yaw. It provides 6-axis motion sensing and features new CoreMotion APIs for extremely precise positioning. "We’re adding a 3 axis gyro, and we tied the gyro and accelerometer, compass, and gyro together for six axis. It’s perfect for gaming," Jobs said.
Back camera has gone from 3 to 5 MP. Apple is using something that’s new to smarpthones — a back side illuminated sensor (giving more light to the camera). There’s a 5X digital zoom, tap to focus, and LED flash built in.
Camera also does HD 720p (at 30 frames per second) video recording. It supports tap to focus and allows us to edit videos right on the phone. It also has 1-click sharing and the LED flash will stay on for the HD video recording. There is also iMovie coming to the iPhone for $4.99 (“if we approve it,” Jobs joked).
iPhone 4 will also feature "FaceTime" video calling. It works between iPhone 4 devices, doesn’t require any setting-up and works anywhere there is WiFi. “It’s WIFI only in 2010. We need to work a little bit with our providers,” Jobs said. He added that Apple is going to make FaceTime and open industry standard.
Apple has renamed the iPhone OS. Now it’s just iOS 4." Becuase it’s on iPad, iPod Touch, and iPhone,” Apple CEO said. He also said that 100 millionth iOS device will be sold this month. "There is definitely a market for your applications," Jobs added.
As announced earlier this year, new iOS 4 features include Multitasking for third party apps; Folders to better organize and access apps; improved Mail with a unified inbox, fast inbox switching and threaded messages; enhanced Enterprise support with better data protection, mobile device management and wireless app distribution.
Apple has also added Bing to the iPhone for search (“Microsoft has done a great job on this,” Jobs said). Google will still be the default, but now we’ll have choice of Google, Yahoo, or Bing.
Developers will get a Golden Master Candidate release of iOS4 today.
Apple is also bringing iBooks to the iPhone with the iPhone 4. It has the same bookshelf as on the iPad, the same ability to read a PDF and comes with the same controls, highlighting, notes, and bookmarking. We can download the same book to all our devices at no extra charge (“Buy it on your iPad, download to your iPhone”)! In addition, iBooks will automatically and wirelessly sync our current place, bookmarks, and notes across all our devices.
On July 1st Apple will also start providing iAds to all iOS 4 devices. “Why are we doing this? To help our developers earn money to continue to create free and low-cost apps for users,” Jobs said. According to him, they are trying to combine “the emotion of video with the interactivity of the Web."
Apple sells and hosts the ads, so developers just have to tell them where to put the ads. And devs get paid 60 percent of the revenue. The company started selling ads eight weeks ago to: Nissan, Citi, Unilever, AT&T, Chanel, GE, Liberty Mutual, State Farm, Geico, Campbells, Sears, JCPenney, Target, Best Buy, DirecTV, TBS Network and Disney. "We’ve got advertisers committing to $60m," Jobs said.
Price and availability
iPhone 4 comes in two colors: black and white. 16GB model is for $199, and 32GB model for $299. Old 3GS is now $99
Jobs said that AT&T is going to make an “incredibly generous upgrade offer: if your contract expires at any time in 2010, you can upgrade to the iPhone 4. You can get it up to six months early."
The new iPhone will be on sale June 24th. Pre orders begin June 15th. Apple will ship iPhone 4 in US and four other countries on the first day (U.K., Germany, France, Japan). In July they’re shipping in 18 countries more. By September it will ship in 88 countries. "Our fastest roll out ever," Jobs said.
iPhone 3GS, iPhone 3G and iPod touch users can upgrade to iOS 4 for free starting June 21.
Reed Hastings from Netflix, Mark Pincus from Zygna and Karthik Bala from Activision were also on stage announcing that Netflix, Farmville and new Guitar Hero will be coming to the iPhone.