Apple boss Steve Jobs officially announced the 3G iPhone at the Worldwide Developers' Conference (WWDC) today. The 3G iPhone will be available for $199 in the US, is thinner at the edges than the first generation iPhone, features sold metal buttons and the same screen as the original.
O2 will launch the new phone in the UK on 11 July. The phone will be available for exactly the same price as it is in the US, with UK customers able to get their handset on the second-generation handset for free, or pay between £59 and £159 depending on the contract and spec.
Those who subscribe to the £45 or £75 per month contracts can get the 3G iPhone for free, while customers paying £30 or £35 each month will have to pay £99 for the smartphone.
Meanwhile, the 16GB model is free with a £75-per-month tariff, £59 to those signing up to a £45 per month deal and £159 for customers paying £30 per month.
Jobs said the 3G iPhone is "amazingly zippy", claiming that download speeds approach those that can be achieved with Wi-Fi. Two other smartphones were used to demonstrate the iPhone's speed superiority - the Nokia N95 and Treo 750, and Apple claimed the iPhone is 36 percent faster than them.
3G iPhone is official
And the introduction of 3G capabilities won't hurt battery life, Apple claims. The 3G iPhone will last for 300 hours of standby time, while 2G talk time is up to 10 hours (from 8 hours). On 3G talk time, while other phones have 3-3.5 hours, the iPhone has 5 hours of 3G talk time, Apple claims.
"That's actually a very large amount of 3G talk time. We're very proud of this," said Jobs.
Meanwhile, the 3G iPhone is capable of up to 5-6 hours of high-speed browsing, 7 hours of video and 24 hours of audio.
The 3G iPhone, which also features built-in GPS support, will be available in 22 countries, starting from July 11. The 16GB version of the handset will be priced at $299 in the US, $100 more than the 8GB model.
The iPhone first went on sale in the US last summer, and Jobs claimed today at WWDC that "it's widely believed that this is the phone that has changed phones forever." Apple sold 6 million iPhones in the first year