San Francisco’s Moscone Center became a temporary haven as 5,200 people eagerly crowded into Monday’s Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) to hear Apple Inc. Co-founder and CEO Steve Jobs unveil the new incarnation of the iP


Little less than a year after what has jokingly been called the Jesus Phone was born, Jobs announced the iPhone 3G would become available July 11, 2008.

"[This is] something dear to my heart…the iPhone. In that first year we sold 6 million iPhones since we ran out some weeks ago…The next mountain we have to climb to go to the next level…3G,” he told the developers and those listening to the audio stream taking place live.

The newest “smartphone” is 3G, which works about 2/3 faster than EDGE. Two versions of the sleek black or white phone will be available: the 8 GB and the 16 GB. Jobs hopes to start selling it in 25 countries but eventually move to legal distribution in more than 70 countries.

“We've sold iPhone in six countries so far, but believe me, they're in use ALL over the world." He laughed, “it's clear there is a demand."

The iPhone 2.0 features include a built in GPS, virtual instruments on which to compose music, extended battery life and talking time.

It also offers languages not previously seen in the iPhone such as two forms of entry on the touchpad for Japanese and two forms for Chinese.

“It’s one of the great advantages of not having plastic keys for your keyboard,” he said chuckling while taking a stab at the more computer-like BlackBerry keyboards and the complaints some iPhone users have brought against Apple, saying the touchpad was frustrating and difficult to use.

Apple’s 4.7 oz. gizmo also includes a flushed headphone jack (accommodating those not wishing to purchase a set of earphones specific to the phone), WiFi and a 2 megapixel camera.

Videoconferencing is not its forte, and the iPhone 3G is a two-year commitment. But it bears a clearly attractive, salient feature: its price.

The 8GB model will go for $199 (an impressive drop from last year’s $599) and the 16 GB will sell at $299 while both will sustain an additional $30 per month for internet use.

With such thunderous audience applause, such facets and such price, though, it’s interesting to note that Apple’s stocks plunged Monday. Still, come July the stores in those countries are going to be busy.