Apple on Tuesday afternoon provided its vast developer community with a second beta release of iPhone Software 3.0, which arrived alongside a promise by the company to gradually open its live Push Notification service and In-App Purchasing to beta testers in the near term.
During Apple's iPhone 3.0 event, the presentation of a mobile-attached blood glucose monitor for diabetic users apparently bored some journalists in the room. However, the demonstration not only revealed Apple's most important leap yet in mobile devices, but also answered the pleas of a diabetic blogger.
While the vast majority of smartphone makers are betting that beefed-up handset hardware alone will attract new feature phone users, Apple demonstrated Tuesday that software stands to be the biggest differentiating factor as the market matures, and is further distancing itself from rivals as a result.
Developers late Tuesday evening are downloading a widely distributed beta of Apple's new iPhone 3.0 software, installing it on their handsets, and weighing in with some first impressions and screen shots, all of which follow. [Updated with video.]
Apple on Tuesday previewed its iPhone OS 3.0 software which includes over 1,000 new APIs for developers and over 100 new features for end users, including Copy & Paste, multimedia messaging, and a landscape mode for applications like Mail and Notes.
At the preview of the new iPhone 3.0 platform, Apple announced new features for users that include the ability to select text for copy and paste between applications, MMS, and scores of other new features.
Two weeks ago, Apple presented its new iPhone 3.0 Software Development Kit to a select group of iPhone developers, then allowed them to take the stage and show off what they could create on the new platform.
In offering a preview look at the new iPhone OS 3.0 platform, senior vice president of iPhone software Scott Forstall announced that Apple has added over a thousand new Application Programming Interfaces to allow developers greater access to the mobile device's features, from peer to peer discovery to peripheral hardware support to background notifications.
At its preview of the new iPhone 3.0 platform, Apple has finally revealed sales figures for iPhones and iPod touch units together: 30 million devices. The company noted that it has sold 17 million iPhones, leaving 13 million iPod touch sales.