The New iPhone 3G S, MacBook Pro, Mac OS X Snow Leopard, Server Snow Leopard, and Safari 4

Posted Jun 9, 2009

Yesterday at the WWDC event, Apple announced several new products.  Some people were upset because there was nothing game-changing added to the new line of products, rather they were merely updates to already existing products.  But the features that were added to the existing products and the introduction of the new iPhone still comes off as exciting caused by Apple’s signature reality distortion field.  Steve Jobs didn’t even have to be there to pull it off either.

Below is a thorough breakdown of all of Apple’s new products and features announced at WWDC.

The iPhone 3G S:
The iPhone 3G S is now known as the fastest iPhone on the market.  It has faster speed and performance along with longer battery life.  The iPhone 3G S has a 3 megapixel camera with autofocus and video recording.  The iPhone 3G S comes with the iPhone OS 3.0.

In terms of graphics, the iPhone 3G S utilizes OpenGL ES 2.0 standard for making applications run faster and make images look higher in quality.

The autofocus on the camera has the ability to manipulate the focus, exposure, color, and contrast.  Videos can be edited on the iPhone itself.  There is a tap to focus feature that tells the camera what specifically should be targeted.

The cost is $199 for a 16GB model and $299 for a 32GB model with a two year contract.  The price of the iPhone 3G has been reduced to $99 for the 8GB model.

Another new feature on the iPhone 3G S is the voice control feature.  You can speak commands into the microphone of the 3G S and it will do as you say.  This includes playing music, shuffling the tracks, and asking the Genius service to play similar music.

The 3G S comes with a compass feature for instant navigation using a magnetometer as was expected.  This makes using the GPS a lot more accurate.

For the seeing impaired, there is a VoiceOver feature that reads what is on the screen.  This enables the user to make calls, read email, run applications, etc. without having to use their finger.

MMS and tethering will eventually be supported using the iPhone 3G S, but the cost of using these features will be higher than the already existing data plan.  I wrote about a rumor regarding the cost of tethering yesterday.

New MacBook Pro Line-Up
Apple has updated the MacBook Pro line recently with a 13″, 15″, and 17″ model.  Each of the new models have a 40% longer battery life and has an LED-backlit display.  Other features include a glass multi-touch trackpad, illuminated keyboard, SD card slot, ExpressCard slot, FireWire 800 port, and NVIDIA graphics card.

Below is a price breakdown of all of the new MacBook Pro:
– 13 inch – 2.26 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo, 2GB of RAM, 160GB hard drive, NVIDIA GeForce 9400M — $1,199
– 13 inch –  2.53 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo, 4GB of RAM, 250GB hard drive, NVIDIA GeForce 9400M — $1,499

– 15 inch – 2.53 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo, 4GB of RAM, 250GB hard drive, NVIDIA GeForce 9400M — $1,699
– 15 inch – 2.66 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo, 4GB of RAM, 320GB hard drive, NVIDIA GeForce 9400M and 9600M GT — $1,999
– 15 inch – 2.8 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo, 4GB of RAM, 500GB hard drive, NVIDIA GeForce 9400M and 9600M GT — $2,299

– 17 inch – 2.8 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo, 4GB of RAM, 500GB hard drive, NVIDIA GeForce 9400M and 9600M GT — $2,499

All of these systems can be upgraded to 8GB of RAM and 500GB hard drive or 256GB SSD.  The 15″ and 17″ MacBook Pros can be upgraded to a 3.06 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo processor.

New MacBook Airs:
The MacBook Air is now available in two new models:
– 1.86GHz
Intel Core 2 Duo processor, 120GB hard drive, NVIDIA GeForce 9400M graphics — $1,499
– 2.13 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo processor, 128GB SSD, NVIDIA GeForce 9400M graphics — $1,799

Mac OS X Snow Leopard:
The Mac OS X Snow Leopard has been announced.  Snow Leopard will start shipping as an upgrade to Leopard for $29 starting in September 2009.  There is a tweaked version of Finder and Mail that work a lot faster than before.  There is a new Dock with Exposé integration feature that allows the user to drag content between previewed windows.

The new operating system will come with a new version of QuickTime X.  The new player will allow users to view, crop, record, and share videos on YouTube, iTunes, and MobileMe.  The hard drive space required for Snow Leopard is half the size of the previous version so it will take up less space after being installed.

Snow Leopard has support for Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 for Mac OS X Mail, Address Book, and iCal.  Those three applications can be used to send/receive mail, create meeting invitations, and manage contacts.

Mac OS X Snow Leopard Server:
The Mac OS X Snow Leopard Server is a 64 bit UNIX-based server operating system.  This version of Snow Leopard Server includes access to firewall-protected network services for the iPhone and Mac.  The cost of Snow Leopard is $499 with unlimited licenses for clients.  Shipping begins in September.

Some of the new features of Snow Leopard Server include:
– Podcast Producer 2 — Allows users to create podcasts fully with titles, transitions, etc. with just a few clicks.
– Wiki Server 2 — Improves online collaboration for users to edit and view wiki content.
– New Address Book Server — Provides central location to store and access contacts across Macs and iPhones
– iCal Server 2 —  Ability to sync and view events using web-based calendar through iPhone and Mac
– New Mail Server — Supports push email so that users receive immediate access to incoming messages
– QuickTime X HTTP Live Streaming — Allows dynamic adjustment of movie playback quality
– NetRestore — Allows easy custom image restore over a network
– iPhone Configuration Utility — Able to setup multiple iPhones with enterprise configuration info, security policies, mail settings, etc.

Back in February, Apple released a Beta version of Safari 4 to anyone that wanted to download and test it.  I did a pro and con analysis of the new browser back then.  The newest version of Safari 4 that is available for download today is slightly different from the previous model.  I like the newer version better.

Safari 4 today is considered the fastest and most innovative web browser.  Safari 4 utilizes the JavaScript Nitro engine which works 4.5 times faster than Safari 3.  Safari 4 includes features such as Top Sites, Full History Search, and Cover Flow.  Safari 4 executes JavaScript 8 times faster than Internet Explorer 8.0 and three times faster than Mozilla Firefox 3.0.

Apple’s web browser was the first to pass the Web Standards Project’s Acid3 test which tests how well a browser can handle CSS, JavaScript, SVG, and XML standards.

There are Smart Address Fields that automatically helps the user complete the web address that they are looking for.  This feature has been around for quite some time in other web browsers including Firefox and Google Chrome.

One of the major switches that the new Safari has compared to the beta version is the way that the tabs are handled.  By default, the tabs are currently below the address bar.  In the beta version, the tabs were integrated with the title of the application and website being visited.