Apple Launches iPhone 3.1 OS Beta

Apple has quietly unveiled a new beta version of its iPhone OS bearing the number 3.1 and has already doled it out to iPhone developers across the land together with its Software Development Kit.

The previous iPhone OS 3.0 was officially released only two weeks ago and the new beta is expected to solve an array of bugs and improve performance. Expect the final version to be released sometimes in August.

PC World and many others are also reporting that amongst the most important upgrades will be the fact that iPhone 3GS users will be able to edit a video, edit it and save it as a separate file as well as added support for voice control via Bluetooth handsets.

MMS is also enabled by default on the beta which some say means that the functionality could be on its way at AT&T. Apple has also updated the modem firmware to version 5.08.01 - whether this means speedier transfers or more stability remains to be seen.

Other "gimmicky" improvements include the ability to make a home-screen icon vibrate and the capability of converting alphanumeric numbers into regular numbers after they are pasted into the dialer application.

Back end improvements will include "noticeable" improvements to Quartz and Open GL which will allow the iPhone 3GS's graphics subsystem to flex its muscles. It is not known whether the new update will help reduce issues associated with overheating that appear to have affected a number of users.

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Our Comments

Apple has certainly been busy lately. The fact that it has launched the iPhone OS 3.1 Beta could also indicate that there are a number of security flaws in the existing setup which the company may not reveal until much later.

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