Less than 24 hours from now (10 a.m. Pacific), Apple will reveal to the world all that’s to come in iPhone operating system version 4.0. Until then, all that’s left to do is speculate on what the highly anticipated release may deliver. Here’s a few guesses – some of them educated, some of them...not so much.
By far the most resounding gripe heard time and time again from iPhone users the world over concerns the iconic device's inability to multitask (run multiple applications simultaneously). To be sure, the iPhone's native applications such as the music player can run as you surf the web and check email, for example, but third-party applications until now have been left out in the cold -- forced to settle for Apple's questionable pop-up notifications solution.
Though far from certain, it’s a safe bet that Apple will aim to rectify this indubitable shortcoming, granting third-party applications the ability to run alongside each other. For anyone who has ever dreamed of instant messaging friends while simultaneously surfing the web on their iPhone, your dreams are likely to become reality tomorrow.
New home screen
When it was first introduced, the iPhone – and its home screen filled with colorful icons in a sleek and simplistic grid format – was arguably unlike anything anyone in the wireless world had ever seen before. Fast forwarding to present, the very screen that has helped define the device’s aura is becoming a bit tired, particularly as Google’s Android OS beckons smartphone buyers with its chic and hugely customizable interface.
While sweeping changes are unlikely, it is possible that we may see the introduction of home screen features including the ability to create folders and shortcuts to favorite contacts, for example. Going even further out on a limb, Apple may even welcome widgets to the iPhone’s minimalist interface.
Turn-by-turn GPS Navigation
Voice guided, turn-by-turn GPS directions have been available for a price for the iPhone for some time now from the usual third-party suspects including TomTom and NAVIGON. Yet, since the introduction of the Motorola DROID that brought the Android platform and free turn-by-turn GPS directions (by way of Google Maps with Navigation) into the hands of the masses, the iPhone seems just a tad bit lackluster for anyone looking to their smartphone for directions.
iPhone OS 4.0 could well deliver free turn-by-turn directions to the popular device.
With the introduction of the Google Nexus One and Android 2.1, users of HTC’s fierce iPhone-challenger won the ability to draw up text messages and emails using only their voice. The feature is trickling down to other lucky Android-powered devices receiving their own updates to Android 2.1, including the Motorola DROID.
Apple would be wise to follow suit.
Hooking up your iPhone to your Mac or PC by way of a USB cable and firing up iTunes each and every time you purchase a new song or add a new contact is pain – but a pain that should be largely avoidable thanks to your WiFi network. Wouldn’t it be nice to come home and set your iPhone down as it automatically checks for and synchronizes any changes with your desktop wirelessly?
Transferring video in such a way would be a potentially epic endeavor, but everything else is fair game. Keep your fingers crossed, iPhone users.
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