The iPhone platform
Its OS is simply called "OS X", removing the "Mac" moniker. It's going to be the platform for the iPod touch, the iPhone, the iPad maybe, Apple TV... But as long as we're talking iPhone, mainly, what feature upgrades does the iPhone really need? The following are the most heard criticisms and feature-wishes for the iPhone, but I don't think Apple actually will bring them to the platform, at least not all of them at once...
People who were using MMS extensively before going iPhone _are_ missing the feature. But it really _is_ just an expensive (at least in some places) replacement for real E-Mail. The iPhone does E-Mail really well. Adding MMS would basically mean to invest development hours into a vanishing technology. So I'm saying: No need, really. iPhone apps allow you to use Facebook and other platforms to share your pix online. If your contacts only have older phones that _don't_ do Facebook and/or E-Mail well, they should get a better phone. May I suggest an iPhone?
2.) Copy & Paste
Many people call it "cut" and paste, but actually cutting isn't required, it's copying that's required. (You don't "cut" a number from an SMS, you copy it.) Apple's been trying to get on without such a feature on the iPhone. I think they've done well in some places, but bad in others. So I hope the rumour comes true, finally, with the news about OS 3.0 tomorrow.
Seriously? Well, I guess some websites depend on it, so the addition of Flash would certainly help make a point of the iPhone OS giving you the "full" web experience Apple always talks about. I don't see it as survival-necessary, and if Apple adds it (with Adobe's help), I sure hope it's a _full_ version of Flash and a mature one at the same time. We don't need more Safari-hangs or crashes on the iPhone, and I suspect any 3rd party plugin has the ability to really fuck things up.
Actually, I haven't heard this call too much. But really, with Apple always talking about how great Spotlight is on the Desktop, it *is* curious how the iPhone does _not_ have a search function at all. We got one in Contacts, but the iPhone really needs Spotlight. I want to enter a person's name, for example, and see his contact information, messages, appointments etc. all on one page, so I can select and open from there without having to open the correct application first. With a lot of E-Mail messages, for example, it's really difficult today to find a text blurb you remember having read in a mail message earlier. Search, I find (heh!), has to make it into 3.0.
5.) Background apps/background push notification
When Apple first talked about how many smartphones weren't all that smart, really, I had to state that the iPhone really just didn't cut it as a smartphone. It was a smart phone, but not a smartphone. One reason, of course, was that smartphones had exactly that differentiation from dumbphones. On Series 60 and Series 80 phones like Nokia's Communicator series, I could have my messages app open, my IM app open and some other stuff, and notifications were a breeze. Going to the iPhone meant that leaving the IM app meant logging out automatically and not being informed about new incoming messages. Not so smart indeed.
The worst thing about this is that Apple *really* got my hopes up when they were talking about the OS 2.0 software and its implementation of push notification. It seemed like a really smart idea. They wouldn't have to actually keep the apps running in the background, but notifications would still work, which was the main one of my gripes with the OS. But OS 2 came and push notification just didn't happen. A broken promise. One that, imho, has hurt Apple's image a bit. I mean: Whatever they promise us on Tuesday - will they actually deliver? Or will we buy into the "this'll come later on in OS 3" and end up wishing for OS 4? It needs to be solved. One way or the other.
The iPhone has a bluetooth chip. It doesn't, however, have Bluetooth features. It supports some headsets, and that's it. They have to be mono, too.
But I want to push contacts, photos and other files via BT. I want to use my iPhone as a BT modem for my MacBook Air. I want to use my Apple Wireless Keyboard for entering text on my iPhone. I could leave my MacBook Air or lenovo S10e hackbook at home then. It's not about acknowleding that the onscreen keyboard is bad. It's quite good actually. I'm quicker on it nowadays than on my Nokia Communicator keyboards, which is quite a feat. But I'm not comfortable writing three or four pages of text on that keyboard, something which I *would* be able to if I could use the wireless keyboard. It runs OS X, I'm sure it can be done quite easily in fact.
I'm quite nervous about the news in a couple of hours (well, about 15-20 hours, I'm guessing...). I want OS 3 to wow me in a good way. But I don't want to just hear about 2 great new features that try to wow me but forgetting about the stuff that users are actually asking for. Giving us things we didn't even _know_ we wanted is great. It's always nice when Apple's able to do that. But giving us required stuff is important as well. (I'm still very thankful I'm finally able to turn off auto-correction without having to do a jailbreak.)