Next-Generation iPhone and iPad May Get Video Conferencing, Spell Check

by Reads (18,471)

Details on the next version of Apple’s iPhone OS have begun the leak out. According to unconfirmed sources, this will include support for two-way video calls, as well as some other enhancements, like file uploads, spell checking, and more.

Previous reports has said that Apple was getting ready to unveil iPhone OS 4.0, but there will apparently be a version released before then: the proto-type Apple iPad units that were being shown off last week were running iPhone OS 3.2.

Wave Hello
Developers with early access to version 3.2 have found code that will allow devices running it to make and receive video calls, as well as switch between a front-facing and rear-facing camera.

Apple iPadNaturally, for this software to be useful will require new hardware: the current iPhone 3GS has only a rear-facing camera, and the iPod touch and iPad lack cameras completely.

More than an iToy
iPhone OS 3.2 will reportedly include a version of the Safari web browser with support for uploading files, as well as greater support for downloading and saving them.

In addition, the new version of Apple’s mobile operating system will supposedly include a spell-checker, with user-editable dictionaries, and a grammar checker.

These latter two features will come in handy for those using their iPhone or iPad for business, something Apple is encouraging by porting the iWork office suite to the iPad.

A Change in Orientation?
The application launcher on the upcoming Apple iPad supports both portrait and landscape modes, while the one on the iPhone and iPod touch support only portrait modes — this will change in OS 3.2.

Earlier versions of the iPhone OS have limited support for external monitors, but the next version will apparently have much more robust support.

Still Missing
Although these unconfirmed reports indicate that iPhone OS 3.2 will include significant enhancements — enough to raise questions on why it’s not being called version 4.0 — there so far has been no clear evidence that it will have some of the most requested features.

At the top of this list is support for Adobe Flash. Apple has steadfastly refused to bring this to the iPhone OS, even though many web sites require it for navigation or video.

In addition, robust multi-tasking is apparently not going to be a part of OS 3.2. Still, unconfirmed reports have said that iPhone OS 4.0 may include better support for running multiple third-party applications simultaneously.

Expected this Summer
The Apple iPad will apparently launch with iPhone OS 3.2, this spring. What happens after that is a bit of a mystery.

When — or if — current iPhone and iPod touch models will get an upgrade to version 3.2 is not known.

Apple is widely expected to release a new iPhone model this summer. It’s not clear at this point if this will debut with OS 3.2, or it if will mark the debut of version 4.0.

Source: Engadget

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