Wow. I had no idea I had this much power. No sooner did I write an Open Letter to Apple mentioning multitasking apps running in the background than MacRumors leaks a rumor that the company might be releasing this feature in the iPhone 3.0 software update. (Okay, I’m not kidding myself into thinking I actually had anything to do with this, but it’s a fun coincidence.)

Here’s the gist: iPhone users can’t run third-party apps in the background. People complained (especially IM users). Then Apple announced at WDC in June that it would focus on Push notification, an alternate solution that would let non active apps receive notices. Apple promised to release it, then didn't, saying it was refining it. That was at the end of the summer.

Now here we are, in February 2009, and still no Push. And, as we all know, Apps still have to quit after every use.

The story floating around now is that Apple may finally liberate apps in the Firmware update 3.0 via user selectable background processes. Why not update 2.2.2 or 2.5.0?  Because it’s not a minor tweak. The next bigger, badder iPhone, with its newer hardware, should hold hands with this major update quite well. And it will supposedly still work with current phones, though it would probably limit background processes to just one or two.

Hard to say if all this is intentionally breaking right now to steal Pre’s thunder (since Apple has no love lost when it comes to Palm), but I say, “Viva la competition!” If we keep seeing awesome developments like this because of a grudge match, then I’m happy as a clam.

The mere thought of an iPhone with true multitasking and possibly even video makes me want to run and check the old bank balance to see if I can even afford a new iPhone in the coming months. If not — well, who needs food, right?

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