New Firmware Points To New iPhone? - InformationWeek
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1/29/2009
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Marin Perez
Marin Perez
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New Firmware Points To New iPhone?

One of the Internet's favorite games is spotting the next iPhone, and we've seen tons of rumors that have been squashed. But recent digging into the latest firmware updates potentially reveal a new iPhone model already is being tested.

One of the Internet's favorite games is spotting the next iPhone, and we've seen tons of rumors that have been squashed. But recent digging into the latest firmware updates potentially reveal a new iPhone model already is being tested.Mobile analytics firm Pinch Media said it has seen reference to a device called "iPhone 2,1" in its ad logs. This isn't just the firmware, as the original iPhone was known as "iPhone 1,1" and the 3G model was "iPhone 1,2." Here's what Pinch Media found:

- the first time an application using Pinch Analytics was run by a 'iPhone 2,1′ device occurred back in early October 2008;

- applications using Pinch Analytics were run by 'iPhone 2,1' devices very sporadically until mid-December 2008, when the pace picked up slightly;

- to date, a few dozen distinct 'iPhone 2,1' devices have run almost two dozen different applications using Pinch Analytics;

- when 'iPhone 2,1′ devices run applications using Pinch Analytics' optional geolocation tracking, they're almost exclusively located in the south San Francisco Bay Area;

- while most of the sessions have been made from Wi-Fi connections, there's been a few connections over AT&T's network, so presumably this device handles both;

- the applications that have been run by Pinch Analytics don't share much in common, except for their size -- they're among the larger applications to use our stuff, with hundreds of thousands to millions of unique users.

Macrumors first picked up on this, and points out that the original iPod was known as "iPod 1,1" and the iPod Touch is known as "iPod 2,1." The Mac site speculates the updated iPhone could support multicore CPUs or possibly multicore GPUs from Imagination Technologies. So far, we've seen a new iPhone around June, and I wouldn't be surprised if a third iPhone appears this summer.

Multiple analysts predict Apple will bring out another iPhone model this year, much like it refreshes the iPod lineup each year. My money's on the forever-rumored iPhone Nano because it just makes a lot of sense to me.

It would be possible to cram in 3G, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and a smaller touch screen into a smaller and sleeker form factor. Of course, one of the main concerns is that it would be incompatible with the more than 15,000 programs in the App Store. While that is a legitimate concern, I doubt it would be a deal breaker because the new iPhone could be restricted from those apps. Developers would be able to port their apps to the new device with minimal work. I mean, how hard is it to change iFart to work for a smaller resolution screen? This also could potentially get Apple to the lovely $99 price point, and (I'm really dreaming here) potentially let an iPhone be supported on another carrier besides AT&T.

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