April 21, 2010
Posted: 03:14 PM ET
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When it comes to shiny gadgets, there are some constants that geeks should all be aware of:
1. Your new thing will be outdated in months when the next new thing comes out, and it will be faster, sexier and cheaper than your current thing.
2. There will always be rumors of the next new thing from Apple.
The rumors begin months, sometimes years, before Apple announces an actual device. There were rumors of an Apple phone years before it came out. An Apple tablet device like the iPad is a similarly old rumor.
With each announcement, speculation about the next version begins before the freshly removed cellophane on the current model has had time to float to the floor.
Some prognosticators are better than others, because they have a better idea of what is most likely - usually not because of any real secret insight from within Apple. Apple is notorious for their tight security (the KGB and CIA could take lessons).
So it was utterly unbelievable that not only had a new Apple device been spotted in the wild, but that a site as well known as Gizmodo had their hands all over it.
It was amazing that Gizmodo was talking about it and had even torn the thing apart for the morbid amusement of many a fanboy.
In the meantime, the revelations about the device weren't too shocking for those already speculating about the device:
But the overall design was somewhat surprising. The iconic iPhone has evolved into a sleek, less curved, device with a metal band around the perimeter. Solid metal buttons for volume. The SIM card slot has been moved to the side, and now apparently uses the same micro-SIM used in the iPad 3G being released at the end of this month.
Will the micro-SIMs be swappable between the iPad and the new iPhone? The iPad offers 250MB or unlimited data monthly plans with no contract from AT&T. I suspect it will be locked down somehow.
The back of the device seems to be different as well. Speculation seems to point to an Apple patent for a ceramic case, which is transparent to electromagnetic waves used by WiFi and cellular devices.
Probably the biggest surprise is a forward-facing camera in addition to the standard rear camera. The only obvious purpose for this will be for video chatting. but just as the accelerometer was applied to unforeseen applications, don't be surprised at the uses some developers may put the new camera (control apps with the wave of your hand).
Apple requested, and received, the device back, which all but proves that it is a legitimate Apple produced device. But is it a final design? Many companies produce several different designs for new products. Is this the final configuration for the device?
The iPad has a space for a forward facing camera, but one wasn't included in the released product. Will this delay the release of the new product? Doubtful as Apple likes to keep to their timetables.
And more importantly, will the poor engineer who lost the phone in the first place ever be released from Apple purgatory? Will his career ever advance beyond mop-pusher? Will he be re-located to Apple’s secret research facility at the South Pole?
What do you think, fellow Apple geeks?
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