3G iPhone Preference Found in Beta 5 Firmware

Seems like I just posted about 3G iPhone. Actually, that’s because I did. It’s not my fault the internet is aflutter with iPhone love.

At any rate, this morning I was greeted by some interesting news regarding the 3G options found in the Beta 5 Firmware plist file. As you can see, the ability to turn 3G on or off is present — accompanied by the standard message about decreasing battery life for data speed.

From this random and very unverified blog post (via MacRumors):

Note that this is not fake, it is in the beta 5 .ipsw, but will normally not show up on an EDGE iPhone. Turning 3G on will just crash the phone if you use an EDGE phone. If you do not believe me, then decrypt the beta5 rootfs dmg, and see for yourself in /Applications/Preferences.app/Network.plist

So what does this mean, exactly?

It appears that the old Edge phones are going to run the same set of software as the new models when released. Unless there’s further implementation of features that expand upon the options for screen size, battery life optimization and other factors, it’s likely we may not see a drastic change in iPhone hardware in this next version.

If they both can run the same software and that software doesn’t account for a lot of differences, there might be some heavy depression in the camp of people that were expecting high end new features (like videocalls, believe it or not).

Nope, it’s starting to look like the device will simply be a bit lighter, look a bit different (for example, the all black cover rumors) and support 3G. This would be somewhat of a disappointment for me. I was hoping to see a fairly different phone. Now that I really give it some thought, that doesn’t make a whole lot of sense.

Apple has a winning model here, they need to tweak some things to broaden the market availability of the device. And… that’s about it. Other than 3G support, we don’t need to go too crazy with features that involve a lot more than simple software updates for this round.