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Apple debuts speedier iPhone 3G S with built-in video camera

Apple on Monday closed out its presentation at WWDC 2009 by introducing the new iPhone 3G S, the fastest iPhone yet with up to twice the speed of the iPhone 3G, longer battery life, a high-quality 3 megapixel autofocus camera, easy to use video recording and hands free voice control. It goes on sale June 19th, while the existing 8GB iPhone 3G drops to $99 starting today.

Twice as fast

On average, Apple said iPhone 3G S is twice as fast as iPhone 3G thanks to built-in support for 7.2 Mbps HSDPA, letting you render web pages quicker and launch applications faster. The handset takes advantage of the OpenGL ES 2.0 standard for high-quality 3D graphics, making mobile gaming and other graphic intense applications more enjoyable than before. It also sports longer battery life, so you can watch more videos, listen to more music, browse the Internet or keep using your favorite apps longer.

"iPhone 3G S is the fastest, most powerful iPhone yet and we think people will love the incredible new features including autofocus camera, video recording and the freedom of voice control," said Philip Schiller, Apple's senior vice president of WorldWide Product Marketing. "And with a breakthrough price of $99, we are thrilled to get iPhone 3G into the hands of even more users who want them."

New 3 megapixel camera

Each iPhone 3G S features a new 3 megapixel autofocus camera that takes pictures and video, making it easier than ever to capture, edit and share those moments instantly with family and friends. The new autofocus camera adjusts focus, exposure, color and contrast for the best possible image and includes an automatic macro focus for extra close up shots.

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With the new "tap to focus" feature, you simply touch the display to select an object or area of interest and the camera automatically re-adjusts focus and exposure. You can record high-quality video clips and edit them right on your iPhone 3G S by simply trimming the start and stop points. You can also send photos and video by email or MMS and post them to MobileMe or YouTube with just one tap.

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Voice Control

A voice control feature in iPhone 3G S offers hands free operation for both iPhone and iPod functions. Simply speak the appropriate commands into the built-in microphone or headset microphone to dial by name or number. With voice control you can play your favorite music by artist, album or playlist and activate the Genius feature by saying "play more songs like this." You can also tell iPhone to pause the music, play the next track, turn on shuffle or ask, "What's playing right now?"

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Digital Compass

iPhone 3G S alsofeatures a new built-in digital compass for instant navigation. A new Apple-authored Compass app shows you which way you are headed and rotates as you change direction. You can orient yourself to true north or magnetic north, and iPhone's built-in GPS automatically displays the coordinates of your current location. The new built-in digital compass is also integrated within Maps, so it automatically orients any map to the direction you are facing.

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Accessibility Features

iPhone 3G S provides new accessibility features including VoiceOver, a screen reader that speaks what appears on the iPhone 3G S display, enabling visually impaired users to make calls, read email, browse web pages, play music and run applications. The new universal Zoom function magnifies the entire screen, and the White on Black feature reverses the colors on screen to provide higher contrast for people with low vision. iPhone 3G S also supports Mono Audio which combines left and right audio channels so that they can be heard in both earbuds for those with hearing loss in one ear.

Nike + Support

iPhone 3G S also features built-in Nike + iPod support making it an workout companion. Users simply place the optional Nike + iPod sensor ($19) in their Nike + shoe to seamlessly connect with iPhone 3G S to track miles run or sync with the latest generation gym equipment.

Ships with iPhone OS 3.0

Each iPhone 3G S will ship on June 19th with the new iPhone OS 3.0, which includes over 100 new features such as Cut, Copy and Paste, MMS, Spotlight Search, landscape keyboard and more. iPhone 3G S customers get access to more than 50,000 applications from Apple's App Store, the largest application store in the world where customers have already downloaded over one billion apps.

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Model breakdown

iPhone 3G S offers twice the capacity for the same price with a 16GB model for just $199 and a new 32GB model for just $299. And beginning today, the existing iPhone 3G is available at the breakthrough price of just $99 for the 8GB model, a move which Apple calls "a huge milestone for the high end smartphone market."

Pricing & Availability

iPhone 3G S will be available in the US on June 19 for a suggested retail price of $199 (US) for the 16GB model and just $299 (US) for the new 32GB model in both Apple and AT&T's retail and online stores, Best Buy and Wal-Mart stores.

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iPhone 3G S requires a new two year contract with AT&T for qualifying customers. iPhone OS 3.0 software will be available on June 17 as a free software update via iTunes 8.2 or later for all iPhone customers. iPod touch customers will be able to purchase a software update for $9.95 (US). Beginning Today, iPhone 3G will be available for just $99 (US) for the 8GB model. New MobileMe features for iPhone require iPhone OS 3.0. MobileMe is available for an annual subscription price of $99 (US).

iPhone 3G S will also be available in more than 80 countries in the coming weeks.