With MacWorld fast approaching, let’s look over what we currently know about iPhone firmware 1.1.3 and what it will mean for us lost souls who are running jailbroken iPhones. We’ll discuss the leaked version of the software and what I’ve gleaned from talking to Andru and Nate True of iBrickr fame and from the rumor and innuendo surrounding today’s keynote.
1. You shall not be able to activate your 1.1.3 right now so don’t upgrade – No matter what Steve promises today, don’t upgrade your iPhone. Just wait. Nate and Andru basically said this thing is locked down tighter than [insert hyperbole here] and that most of the traditional methods are unusable. Will someone crack it soon? Absolutely. I honestly believe that most of these hacks are inside jobs and with an SDK on the horizon, it can’t be long before a programmer asks the right question in an Apple support board and breaks through to the other side.
2. You shall be able to make your own apps and sell them – According to the leaked keynote, the absolutely veracity of which I sincerely doubt, there will be an online store for iPhone apps and you will be able to program and upload your manifold works and sell them, just like you would on the iTunes store.
3. You shall be able to modify icon order – According to the leaked 1.1.3, the biggest change in the OS will be the wiggly, movable icons. This feature will allow you to move applications from page to page and add web shortcuts to your front page.
4. You shall have new apps – There is some talk about iChat and an RSS reader in the new firmware. I’m 80% on iChat — Apple would have to run its own proxy servers to get a high-quality IM experience — but a guy can dream. Because AT&T doesn’t have the Sidekick — hands-down the best IM client out there — they probably don’t have their own proxies. As a result, you’ll basically get what you get with the current crop of IM clients: wonky, half-assed connections that drop out with great frequency.
5. You shall probably crash more – What do you get when you give an SDK to millions of programmers? A few cases of janky code, for one, along with hundreds of great applications. Unfortunately, the jank will eventually crash your iPhone and you will be sad.
6. There shall be fake GPS – If you recall, Navizon offered free faux-GPS in the iPhone apps toolbox. Then, however, they started charging for the service. This means they needed to make a little cash off of their software before Apple began offering the service for free. This means Apple probably bought a Navizon competitor, alerting Navizon to the impending change.
7. There shall not be some magical WiMax button Steve will push to make your phone faster – Sorry. Won’t happen. The hardware isn’t there. There won’t be a hardware refresh until at least the end of the summer. It just doesn’t make sense to update the innards less than a year after launch.
8. The SDK shall have a widget portion – You won’t have to know how to collect trash and program linked lists to make a cool little app. I suspect they’ll have a widget system that requires a little CSS, a little HTML, and some connectivity code. Easy peasy, non-nerds!
9. There shall not be cake – The cake is a lie.
10. Most of what I’ve written shall be false – Sorry. I’m basing this on assumption and rumor and, as we all know, assuming makes an ass out of you and me.