Sure, Apple didn't really shock anyone with the announcement of the iPhone 3G S this morning at WWDC, but there was no shortage of news at the Moscone Center -- we also got new MacBooks, final Snow Leopard details, and a release date for iPhone OS 3.0. On the other hand, it wasn't all good news either: AT&T's iPhone upgrade pricing and service levels leave a lot to be desired, and Apple's unfortunate penchant for sealed-in batteries has finally hit the 15-inch MacBook Pro. Apple's posted its stream of the keynote if you want to relive things in real-time, but here's a quick rewind in case you missed anything:
Current iPhone owners will get iPhone OS 3.0 for free, although some features like video recording and voice control are limited to the iPhone 3G S. It's not perfect, but we don't really complain about free.
Snow Leopard upgrades will cost just $29, instead of the usual $129.
The original 8GB iPhone 3G is now only $99 for new AT&T subscribers. That's definitely going to make some waves in the smartphone market.
We'd have loved to see some external design improvements and maybe some more surprising features that weren't rumored, but overall the iPhone 3G S is definitely in the "good" column -- it's a solid set of improvements to an already very good platform.
MacBook Air and MacBook Pro (including the new 13-inch Pro) specs have increased while prices have come down, and glory be, FireWire is back on everything but the Air.
As usual, iPod touch owners are going to get dinged $9.95 for the iPhone OS 3.0 upgrade. Hey Apple -- maybe switch these guys over to subscription accounting as well?
Let's face it, "iPhone 3G S" is a pretty clunky name.
Sure, it's nice that the MacBook Pros now have an SD card slot, but losing ExpressCard hurts. And why not a multicard reader? Pro DSLRs still use CF.
Sure, new customers and qualified upgraders are getting some sweet pricing on iPhone hardware, but AT&T's basically flipping existing customers the bird -- they'll have to pay anywhere from $399 to a whopping $699 to get an iPhone 3G S. You'd think they'd have looked at how many people went from a first-gen iPhone to a 3G and realized those same people would want a 3G S, but apparently not.
On top of that insult, AT&T isn't supporting all of iPhone OS 3.0's features out the gate: MMS is coming "later this summer," and tethering has been promised but there's no timeline and no pricing information. Thanks, AT&T.
Sure, it's grand that the 15-inch MacBook Pro's battery now lasts for up to seven hours on a charge and won't lose capacity for five years, but a non-swappable battery on a workhorse professional machine just doesn't cut it for us.
So all in all we'd say that the good outweighs the bad, although AT&T really disappointed here. Of course, that's just scratching the surface -- check out the rest of our coverage after the break and let us know what you think!
Phil Schiller keynote live from WWDC 2009
Apple's video stream of the keynote
MacBook and OS X announcements
Apple's new MacBook family: non-removable batteries, lower prices
Safari 4 released today, offering 'unparalled speed'
Apple shipping Snow Leopard in September, $29 upgrade
iPhone 3G S announced: $199 16GB, $299 32GB, June 19th
Apple's 8GB iPhone 3G falls to $99 on contract
Apple shows iPhone OS 3.0 at WWDC, hits devices June 17th
Apple announces "Find My iPhone" phone-locating service
iPhone apps and accessories
ScrollMotion's Iceberg in-app bookstore announced for iPhone, ready to take on the Kindle?
Line 6 and Planet Waves brings guitar and amp control to iPhone
In-depth / other stuff
Apple digs into Microsoft at WWDC
Video: iPhone 3G S looks the same but it's not, really
iPhone 3G vs. iPhone 3G S: the tale of the tape
Poll: iPhone 3G S or the Pre?
AT&T: we'll offer tethering on the iPhone
Video: iPhone 3G S gets a guided tour
White MacBook last MacBook standing