While we learnt at this week's Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) that Apple's high-speed 3G iPhone is arriving next month, precious little else was released about the phone apart from UK pricing and the fact that it has GPS.
But we're still curious about a number of things, so here's our list of the questions that we'd love to know the answer to.
What's with the plastic back?
As Steve Jobs ticked off the design achievements of the iPhone 3G at the WWDC keynote, he mentioned its 'full plastic back'. I think that this change may indeed be a virtue. The shiny metallic backs sported by first-generation iPhones and most varieties of iPods are maddeningly effective magnets for scratches, fingerprints, and grime.
But Apple usually upgrades its products by replacing plastic with metal; it's hard to imagine the company going the other direction unless it had a motive unrelated to aesthetics. Was it able to shave a millimetre or three off the required thickness by using plastic? (Cramming everything in was clearly a challenge. Despite Jobs' claim that the new iPhone is "even thinner" at the edges than its predecessor, Apple's official depth spec for the iPhone 3G is 12.3mm, versus 11.6mm for the original iPhone.)
Maybe the metal would have interfered with GPS reception? Or did Apple simply have to go with cheaper materials when it cut the cost of the iPhone in half?
When will we get 32GB and 64GB iPhones?
For some of us, an iPhone can't function as a first-class iPod until it has enough memory to hold every song and video in a fairly large media collection. It's safe to assume that Apple will boost the phone's memory as soon as it can cram enough storage into its case and sell the resulting device at a price that a sane person might spring for.
Since the iPhone-like iPod touch already comes in a £329 32GB version, I'd be surprised if a 32GB iPhone is more than a few months away.
But I'd be equally surprised if a 64GB iPhone showed up before mid-2009 or so, given the still-imposing cost for that much flash memory. (Apple charges a £650 premium for a 1.6GHz MacBook Air equipped with a 64GB solid-state drive instead of an 80GB traditional drive.)
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