When it comes to Apple, something is always in the works. And the next-gen iPhone (or iPhone OS device) is no exception. This little nugget seems to confirm previous reports that something is coming. References to "iPhone3,1" have surfaced in the usage records for iBART, a San Francisco transportation app created by Pandav.
Here’s what happened: Basically, developers can get analytics for their apps that show customer usage by device. After parsing what had to be miles of spreadsheets, someone at Pandav got a shocker when iPhone 3,1 popped up in the records recently. To date, there is no iPhone 3,1 in the market. (The iPhone 2,1 is the most current model, the iPhone 3GS.) This is the second appearance of this mystery ID tag since August, when it was discovered wedged inside the iPhone firmware’s code. This, however, is the first time it’s been peeped out in the wild.
Now, on its own, it may seem like just another crumb, but it’s important to note a couple of things: As mentioned, when iPhone 2,1 was outted, it heralded the upcoming iPhone 3GS. Second, when Apple started testing the 3GS around San Francisco prior to its summer launch, it was during a similar timeframe (fall 08).
Could this next-gen device likewise take eight months to launch? It could, but experts think it would be sheer foolishness for Cupertino to wait until June, with Android running so fierce in the market. And they’re not expecting it will. Most pundits believe that some sort of mobile product will come from Apple a lot sooner than that. But what that device will be is anyone’s guess.
Early on, there was some buzz about a multi-core processor that would boost performance. More recently, iPhone gossip has been swirling around the arrival of new hardware compatible with Verizon’s CDMA network, with a supposed launch by mid 2010. And let’s not forget rumors of a multimedia tablet possibly running the iPhone OS.
Whatever iPhone 3,1 is, it looks like testing may have already begun for it. Fingers crossed that we don’t have to wait eight months to find out what it is.