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For both work and play, a look at the 3G iPhone's new features
Are you considering an iPhone?
While this isn't a technological feature, the 3G iPhone's new low price may be its most enticing selling point. AT&T Mobility CEO Ralph de la Vega says that his company has signed a new exclusivity agreement with Apple that has given AT&T the flexibility to drastically slash the price for the popular device, in the US, down to $199 for the 8GB iPhone and $299 for the 16GB iPhone.
Using the same format as Apple's hugely successful iTunes store, the App Store will be the official one-stop shop for all third-party iPhone applications. Apple unveiled its iPhone software development kit (SDK) back in March, which for the first time allowed third-party developers to create their own applications for the device. Applications that have already been demoed using the iPhone SDK include AOL's Instant Messenger, Electronic Arts' strategy game "Spore" and Salesforce.com's hosted salesforce automation software. According to Apple, the store will be available in 62 different countries during its launch next month.
While Apple has added many new features to make the iPhone attractive to corporate users, the most enticing might be getting access to Microsoft's Exchange ActiveSync, which will provide them with secure over-the-air e-mail, contacts, calendars and global address lists. The addition of Exchange ActiveSync's built-in support will give IT departments the ability to set password policies, to set up VPN settings and to perform remote data wipes on iPhones that have been lost or stolen, Apple says.
Another potentially critical enterprise feature is the iPhone Configuration Utility, which is available as either a Web application or a native Mac OS X application and can be used to enforce corporate passcode policies and settings. Essentially, the application allows IT administrators to create and distribute Configuration Profiles to each individual enterprise iPhone user that are used to install authentication certificates for VPN servers, Exchange servers, and 802.1X-based wireless networks. The Configuration Utility also enforces corporate VPN, e-mail and wireless network settings.
Cisco's VPN clients have long been a staple of enterprise mobility, as they allow employees to safely access corporate e-mail and data from home or remote locations. The iPhone's newly-added VPN capabilities, which let employees authenticate through passwords, two-factor tokens, or digital certificates, are yet another critical feature designed to make the device attractive to enterprise users.
Not satisfied to just offer Microsoft's enterprise products on its iPhones, Apple has developed its own version of Microsoft Exchange Server that the company says will provide push e-mail, contacts and calendars direction from the cloud to iPhone apps. According to Apple, MobileMe will give users the option of having their e-mail sent directly to the iPhone and will not require users to log on to Web browser-based e-mail. MobileMe also has a photo-sharing feature that lets users upload their camera-phone pictures directly onto a MobileMe Gallery that can be accessed by friends and family.
Now that Apple has unveiled the new 3G iPhone at the Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) this week, here's a look at all the new features and applications that iPhone users can look forward to when the device hits the market on July 11.
For the first time in its history, the iPhone will have access to AT&T's High-Speed Downlink Packet Access (HSDPA) 3G network in the US, that will connect iPhone users to voice and data services. Recently, AT&T upgraded its 3G wireless network to reach downlink speeds of up to 1.7Mbps, a 20 per cent increase over previous top speeds. The iPhone now supports Wi-Fi, 3G and EDGE networks, and is programmed to switch between them while searching for the fastest possible connection.