Apple unveils smart cellphone

  • Nation
  • Thursday, 11 Jan 2007

SAN FRANCISCO: Say hello to Apple’s iPhone, just unveiled in the United States on Tuesday. 

Apple describes it as a combination of its video iPod, a cellphone and an Internet-based communicator. 

The smart phone, with its 8.9cm liquid-crystal display, is above all others in the market now because of several cool features, according to the company. 

It has an intelligent touch-screen interface that allows for multi-fingered gestures – touch thumb to index finger or move the digits apart to zoom a picture in or out, for example.  

The interface will even filter out accidental touches. 

The iPhone has advanced built-in sensors that automatically detect when the user has rotated the device from vertical to horizontal; it then changes the contents on display (such as a video clip or webpage) from portrait to landscape mode.  

Under development for two years, the iPhone runs on a special version of the Mac OS X operating system that offers the same graphics, networking and multimedia capabilities as on Apple’s desktop computer. 

Advanced versions of Apple’s Safari Web browser, Mail application and Google Maps were demonstrated on the iPhone during its unveiling at the Macworld Conference and Expo 2007 here. 

For music fans, it is a full-fledged iPod too, with either 4GB or 8GB of Flash memory storage, as well as both video and audio playback capabilities. About 2,000 MP3 songs can be kept using 8GB of storage. 

The iPhone supports quad-band GSM (Global System for Mobile communications) for voice calls, as well as EDGE (Enhanced Data rate for GSM Evolution), WiFi (Wireless Fidelity) and Bluetooth 2.0 for exchanging data between devices or systems.  

On a full charge, the battery is good for up to five hours of making calls, viewing videos or browsing the Web, and up to 16 hours of music playback. 

Apple has priced the iPhone at US$499 (RM1,750) for the 4GB version and US$599 (RM2,100) for the 8GB model in the United States, where it will be available from June. 

The bad news for us in Asia is that Apple will only make the iPhone available in our part of the world from next year.  

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