Multiple iPhone Models Due Out This Summer?

Posted by: Olga Kharif on March 20, 2009

Rumors that Apple will unleash several new iPhone models when it releases new hardware this summer have picked up a notch. The speculation is that the company could unveil a cheaper, lighter iPhone, an iPhone especially designed for business use, and a netbook — in addition to upgrading its current iPhone model.

Clearly, some of these possibilities could be just wishful thinking. But some make a lot of sense. In an economic recession, a cheaper iPhone Nano-type device would certainly sell well. Netbook computers are flying off the shelves, and an Apple tablet is certain to be a hit.

What I don’t buy is the idea of an iPhone for business users. The current iPhone 3G can already do much of what corporate users want: check stock quotes, dip into corporate e-mail, listen to news podcasts. One sure way to increase the iPhone’s appeal to corporate users is to add a physical keyboard. But Apple’s Steve Jobs has always been against that.

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Reader Comments

IPHONE-having-mofo

March 20, 2009 04:46 PM

The email client of the current iphone is as corporate as a tmobile Sidekick. Can't wait to get the update!

Brett Smith

March 20, 2009 06:23 PM

The iPhone is not even close to having business functionality.
1)The camera cannot be used out on sites for taking pictures to be sent to people on the spot (eg. real estate, parts and purchasing).
2) You cannot forward pictures on the spot, ie. no MMS.
3) No cut and paste.
4) Call conferencing is very poor with low speaker quality and having to continuously say "please repeat".
5) Cannot send people phone number from your contacts.
6) Cannot type messages by feel meaning you have to watch the screen carefully when typing.
7) No tether ability to make the phone your 3G modem for your PC.
8) Cannot open/store/edit and retrieve later Microsoft office documents.
9) Email management is poor.
10) No bluetooth for file management.
11) No groups for group SMS.
12) Unable to start multiple drafts of SMS.
13) Calendar management is clunky.

rockingRange

March 20, 2009 11:04 PM

you are certainly right about how Steve Jobs is against this physical keyboard.His first marketing Apple event on iphone says that clearly.

Mike Milton

March 21, 2009 12:03 AM

Missing business functionality:
synchronizing tasks with Outlook

Robert Perea

March 21, 2009 12:44 AM

@ Brett Smith... 2/3 of the stuff you just listed (1,2,3,5,7,9,10,11) is coming out in iphone OS 3.0 which is coming out this summer with the new version(s) of the iphone. Bet you didn't get that memo did you?

Robbie

March 21, 2009 08:01 AM

PDANet works fine for iPhone to PC tethering via a USB connection so this limitation has already been resolved.
I agree that the touch keyboard is terrible and would like to see a "coat pocket size" device that has a usable keyboard and a larger display.
It would also be helpful to have a higher resolution camera.

Chris

March 21, 2009 03:33 PM

Brett, did you not hear anything about the new 3.0 software coming out in just a few months?

We are getting MMS;

cut, copy, and paste;

I don't know what you're talking about conference calling since mine works great;

again, MMS (pictures, audio, location, and contacts);

texting on the iPhone is awesome!;

tethering is available now via PDANet (Cydia) and will be available by Apple and AT&T sometime after 3.0 is released;

I think iPhone email is great;

and full bluetooth support coming with 3.0!

The iPhone is about to take many leaps forward with 3.0. :]

applebot

March 23, 2009 12:18 AM

Uhh, brett most of those things are fixed as of Iphone OS 3.0.

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BusinessWeek writers Peter Burrows, Cliff Edwards, Olga Kharif, Aaron Ricadela, Douglas MacMillan, and Spencer Ante dig behind the headlines to analyze what’s really happening throughout the world of technology. One of the first mainstream media tech blogs, Tech Beat covers everything from tech bellwethers like Apple, Google, and Intel and emerging new leaders such as Facebook to new technologies, trends, and controversies.

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