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Friday, July 11, 2008, 11:00 am PT (02:00 pm ET)

Apple releases iPhone and iPod touch software 2.0 [see warning]

Apple this afternoon officially released version 2.0 of iPhone software for both first-generation iPhones and the iPod touch. iPhone users, however, should not attempt to install the update at this time due to ongoing Apple server issues.

iPhone Software 2.0

Earlier this morning, first-generation iPhone owners who connected their phones to iTunes were told that they could finally download and install iPhone Software v2.0. However, an official announcement regarding the software's release was not issued until 1:05 p.m. Eastern time.

Still, the upgrade process has proven to be nothing but a frustrating disaster for a large number of users due to the ongoing iPhone 3G launch, which has in recent hours also turned into a meltdown. The iPhone Software 2.0 updater is completely different than earlier updaters, in that it completely erases all of the data on first-generation iPhones in order to perform the new software install, and therefore temporarily deactivates them as well.

Once the iPhone 2.0 software install finishes, iTunes then tries to connect to Apple's remote iTunes servers and authorized a reactivation of the phones. However, those remote iTunes servers are the same servers being pounded with requests from hundreds of thousands of new iPhone 3Gs that are being activated around the world today. As such, Apple is currently experiencing serious issues with its iTunes servers, which have largely become unreachable.

This has left a significant number of first-generation iPhone users with bricked iPhones that have no service outside of calling emergency help lines because iTunes is unreachable to authorize a reactivation. Apple's iTunes servers as of press time appeared to be completely offline for both new iPhone 3G buyers and first-generation iPhone owners attempting to reactive their phones with iPhone Software v2.0 installed.

Warning

Given this ongoing and unfortunate situation, first-generation iPhone users should not attempt to upgrade their iPhones with iPhone Software v2.0 at this time. AppleInsider will update this article or post a new article when it is believed to be safe to upgrade first-generation iPhones.

Update: It now seems that Apple's iTunes activation servers are slowly coming back on line. Users feeling brave may want to give their upgrades a shot, though waiting till tomorrow (when Apple's had a whole evening to knock out the kinks) would be the safest bet.

iPhone Software 2.0 for iPod touch

Separately, Apple has begun selling iPhone Software 2.0 upgrade for iPod touch for $9.95 via this iTunes Store link.. You can also find the same link to the software on this Apple iPod touch page.

The upgrade will deliver all of features of iPhone Software 2.0 to iPod touch owners, save for the reactivation nightmare. However, since Apple's iTunes upgrade servers are now completely off line, this update is currently inaccessible.