Apple Reveals iPhone OS 4.0 Details

April 8, 2010

Today, Steve Jobs and his cohorts at Apple unveiled the particulars about the forthcoming iPhone OS update. The big news? Everyone demanded it, and Apple (eventually) heard you - multitasking is coming to the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch devices by way of the newest OS firmware. But there's a catch.

The rub is that if you own an iPhone 3G or first generation iPhone, you're not invited to the party. Apparently, the hardware doesn't support multitasking. We think that's another way of saying that it runs too slow on the chips in the 3G and first generation iPhone that they decided to ditch it. It's actually not that shocking, considering how poorly even OS 3.1 runs on 3G devices currently.

But let's not dwell on the negative - OS 4.0 isn't just about multitasking (or lack thereof).

Here's the run down of the notable new features:

Spell Check - Similar to the feature found on the iPad
Bluetooth Keyboard Support - Again, similar to the same feature found on the iPad
User-defined Wallpaper - Much like jailbroken phones already have
Tap to focus when recording video - Much like with photos on the 3GS +  5x digital zoom for the camera

App Folders - Better organization for apps

iBooks - just like on iPad, only smaller. You can wirelessly sync books between platforms, a la Amazon's Kindle.

Game Center - Similar to Xbox Live, but for iPhone games. Includes achievements, leaderboards, and matchmaking. It will be available as a "developer preview," and out for consumers later this year.

The OS update is set to drop for the iPhone and iPod touch "this summer," while the iPad will be getting this software upgrade in the fall.

Source: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images News/Getty Images