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Apple launches faster iPhone 3G S update

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Apple has unveiled its eagerly awaited iPhone update – a new, faster model dubbed the iPhone 3G S – at its Worldwide Developers Conference in San Francisco.

The new iPhone 3G S goes on sale in the UK on June 19 and will be priced at $199 for the 16GB model and $299 for the 32GB handset. Both are available in black and white but otherwise the exterior is identical to the existing iPhone 3G. UK prices are yet to be released but are likely to be the same as the current 8GB and 32GB variants.

Apple also took the opprtunity to slash the price of the older iPhone 3G to just $99 – effectively undercutting the rival Palm Pre which was launched over the weekend.

Apple said it had increased the RAM and the speed of the processor in the iPhone 3G S which made it up to twice as fast as the previous model when browsing the web or launching and running applications. RAM has doubled to 256MB while the ARM processor has been cranked up to 600Mhz from 412Mhz previously.

At the same time the battery life of the iPhone 3G S has been given a claimed boost of 20%, taking it to 5 hours of talk time or data use on a 3G connection.

Apple has addressed another main criticism of the iPhone by upgrading the camera to 3 megapixels and adding autofocus and auto white balance support. There is no flash however but the low light perfomance has been ‘improved’.

The iPhone 3G S now – yay! – supports video recordings at VGA resolution up to 30 frames per second and comes bundled with some typically Apple-slick video editing and uploading software.

Suffice to say we want one. Yesterday.

The new iPhone 3G S in a nutshell:

  • Identical form factor
  • 16GB and 32GB
  • Faster processor and increased RAM
  • 7.2 Mbit HSDPA
  • 3 megapixel camera with autofocus and VGA video support at 30 FPS
  • 20% improved battery life
  • Digital compass
  • Voice-control for phone and iPod features
  • Onboard video editing
  • On sale June 19 at $199 and $299

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