Michael Rose had a double-take today while he was reading an email on his iPhone 3G running iPhone OS 3.0. In the message -- a comment from TUAW reader binklewis -- was the place name 'San Antonio, TX'. As Mike scanned the email, he noticed that those words were highlighted as a link, and tapping the link opened up a map in the iPhone's Map app.
Sure enough, these new data detectors in Mail for iPhone OS 3.0 were noted in Apple's preview of the upgrade, but seeing them in action is pretty neat. Further playing about (below) showed that full addresses (in addition to just city names in emails) also work, placing a pin right at the site of an address that had been tapped in a mail message. In earlier versions of iPhone OS, you could tap on a phone number embedded in an email to dial it, but that was about it.
These data detectors are similar to the ones included in Mail.app on Mac OS X. Unlike Mac Mail, however, there's still no way for times and dates (i.e., "june 29 at 3:30 PM") to be detected and added to the iPhone Calendar app. Perhaps that's an upcoming feature for iPhone OS 3.5!