Apple announces the iPhone 4

Well, it's official. Steve Jobs has uttered the "magic" words. Today at Apple's World Wide Developers Conference, the iPhone 4 was announced, putting all prior forms of speculation to rest. The new phone will run iPhone OS 4, which has now been renamed iOS 4. Apple is also releasing over 100 new features as part of their development SDK. Included in these features are multitasking, folders, a unified inbox, and deeper enterprise support.

Microsoft's Bing has been added as an alternative search engine option in iOS 4 (Google remains the default). iBooks for the iPhone will also be available and will allow you to access the content that you've already purchased for your iPad.

Previously thought to be called iChat, FaceTime, was shown off as Steve Jobs' famous "one more thing." FaceTime is real-time video chat, available between two iPhone 4 devices. For the remainder of 2010, it will be only usable over Wi-Fi, as carriers are not yet ready for the extra traffic. Apple plans to make FaceTime an open industry standard.

iPhone 4 will be available from AT&T on June 24th for $199 (16 GB) and $299 (32 GB), assuming you sign a two-year contract. If your contact was set to expire at any point in 2010, you will be elligible for an upgrade immediately. Pre-orders begin on June 15th. The phone will initially be available in the US, France, Germany, UK, and Japan, with many more countries to follow (88 planned for 2010). At launch, a case will be available in six colors for $29. iOS 4 will be available as a free update for iPod Touch (2nd gen and above) and iPhone 3G and 3GS users on June 21st.

Here's what the iPhone 4 will sport:

  • New design made of glass and steel (24% thinner than iPhone 3GS)
  • Apple A4 processor
  • 3.5" Retina Display - 326 pixels per inch (960 x 640)
  • Bigger battery (7 hr. 3G talk, 6 hr. 3G browsing, 10 hr. Wi-Fi browsing, 300 hr. standby)
  • Front-facing camera
  • 5 MP camera with LED flash and illuminated sensor (tap to focus)
  • 720p HD video recording with built-in iMovie video editing (iMovie available in App Store for $4.99)
  • microSIM
  • Wi-Fi, GPS, Bluetooth, UMTS, GSM (quad-band)
  • 2 microphones
  • Available in 16 GB or 32 GB models
  • 802.11n Wi-Fi
  • 3-axis gyroscope (6-axis motion sensing for gaming)

For more information about the iPhone 4, visit Apple's website.

UPDATE: Engadget has been given some hands on time with the iPhone 4 and has posted this video of FaceTime in action. Even over Wi-Fi, it still seems pretty choppy. However, that could be due to the number of FaceTime demos going on at the same time.

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