Steve Jobs yesterday unveiled the 3G iPhone (or iPhone 3G as it’s officially called) at this year’s Apple World Wide Developer Conference and show cased a number of games for the device made by independent developers.
Apple’s top 22 markets (Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Mexico, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, UK and the US) will get the iPhone 3G on July 11th, with 48 more countries to follow before year-end.
Saying that the firm had learned a lot from the first version of the phone, Jobs said that Apple would be seeking to resolve the biggest problem the iPhone has faced: its cost.
An 8GB iPhone 3G will cost $199 and the 16GB version $299. That compares very favourably to $399 for the original 2.5G 8GB device and $599 for the 16GB 2.5G version.
The standout technical addition apart from the HSDPA 3G stuff is GPS functionality.
iPhone 3G includes the new iPhone 2.0 software with both the iPhone SDK and key enterprise features such as support for Microsoft Exchange ActiveSync.
Meanwhile, the highly-anticipated App Store on iPhone will work over both cellular networks and Wi-Fi, and will be available in 62 countries at launch.
Key games were on hand during the keynote to show how game developers can take advantage of the App Store.
Developers from Sega, Digital Legends, eBay, Loopt and others were on hand to show off what they’ve made (from enterprise apps to entertainment) using the iPhone SDK, which Jobs said had been downloaded over a quarter of a million times since its release earlier this year.
Apple added that over 25,000 developer programme applications have been received and so far, 4,000 have been accepted.
The new iPhone version of Super Monkey Ball, previously unveiled in March, was among the first iPhone apps to be demonstrated. The game will be made available from the iPhone App Store for $9.99, with more to come from the Japanese publisher, according to the company’s associate producer Ethan Einhorn
Spanish game developer Digital Legends took time to show off 3D action adventure Krull, which is due for a September release.
Also developer Pangea displayed Enigmo and Cro-Mag Rally, a racing game that used iPhone’s accelerometer like a steering wheel.
Apple confirmed that content providers wishing to sell their software via the App Store (protected by FairPlay DRM) will have to choose between two price points: free and $9.99. The news puts the kibosh on reports from last week that iPhone games would cost $25. Content providers get to keep 70 per cent of the revenue from every app sold.