In just six days Apple will kick off its Worldwide Developers Conference, which runs from June 8-12. The perennial Apple event is one of several vehicles the company uses to unveil new tech toys and software.
Just like WWDC 2008, where Apple introduced the iPhone 3G, WWDC 2009 looks like it's going to be another one for the history books. Tickets to this year's conference have been sold out since late April, and the tech world is certain that Apple has an incredible lineup of shiny new toys for this year's WWDC at San Francisco's Moscone Center West.
So with less than a week to go before WWDC, I decided to boldly declare the gadgets, features and software, that I think are most likely to debut at WWDC 2009:
Push Notification Is a Go
Apple has been trying to get its alternative to background processes off the ground since WWDC 2008. At the time, push notification was supposed to be available by September, but technical problems held Apple back. Push notification allows developers to deliver timely content updates to applications without the need for running battery-draining background processes on your device. Rumor has it that Apple might be finished testing push notification (as pictured above on MacRumors.com), and ready to roll this feature out to the public just in time for WWDC.
iPhone 3.0 Launch Date
When Apple first introduced iPhone OS 3.0, the company said the new OS would launch this summer but didn't specify when. The two most common timeframes for an OS 3.0 launch are during WWDC or around July 17. Those who argue in favor of WWDC point to the recent release of an updated iTunes with new copy restrictions as a sign that Apple is getting ready to introduce 3.0. However, the master iPhone jailbreakers at the iPhone dev blog anticipate that Apple is roughly halfway through its 3.0 beta testing phase, which suggests a July launch. Personally, my money is on WWDC, but that's just me.
New iPhone Models
We've seen leaks from international iPhone carriers, dwindling iPhone 3G stocks, mysterious iPhone spare parts for sale on Chinese Websites and wild predictions from every blog imaginable. With all this noise, it's hard to know what's real, but I'm betting a 32GB iPhone is going to show up at San Francisco's Moscone Center West next week.
Apple's man with the Midas touch has been on medical leave for almost six months, and is expected to return to 1 Infinite Loop this summer. There have been rumors of Jobs sightings at Apple headquarters, and I'd be surprised if Steve-O let his company launch a new iPhone without at least a smile and wave from the audience.
In April, reports surfaced of a video camera function found in a beta release of iPhone OS 3.0. Since then there have been more iPhone video sightings in the OS, and the possibility has been raised of seeing onboard video editing for the iPhone.
One of the biggest complaints about the iPhone ecosystem is its approval process for third-party applications. Recently, Apple rejected three applications because they linked to what Apple deemed to be "objectionable content." Two of those apps, a Nine Inch Nails app and an e-book reader, have since been accepted into the iTunes fold after public outcry. To get around these problems, Apple appears to have developed a parental control system for iPhone applications. A rating system allows Apple to restrict iPhone applications to certain age groups based on the program's content. Let's hope this solution is real, and ends the ridiculous banning and unbanning of third-party apps.