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iPhone 4.0 SDK Hints at Camera Flash & Video Conferencing

Gordon Kelly

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iPhone 4.0 SDK Hints at Camera Flash & Video Conferencing

Well, this was to be rather expected wasn't it...

Developers have been digging around in the iPhone OS 4.0 SDK over the weekend and have found all sorts of coding hints about the next Apple handset. The big ones: video conferencing and a camera flash.

Buried deep within the 4.0 SDK are multiple references to video conferencing (as shown above) suggesting Apple will finally bring a second front facing camera to the range. Chat rooms, moderators, encrypted conferences, etc are all mentioned in the code alongside notification messages similar to that of iChat on Mac OS X meaning a mobile version of the popular IM could be on the horizon.

Backing this up is evidence from TUAW which has discovered reference to 'iChatAgent' in the running processing in the SDK alongside 'AVCaptureDevicePositionFront' and 'AVCaptureFlashModeOn/Off/auto' signalling perhaps a camera upgrade and integrated flash.

Personally I can't say I've ever hankered after video calling, but those who do use it swear by it and it would undoubtedly be more efficient than the usual process of snapping something, emailing it and then calling that person to discuss it. A better camera would also be extremely welcome and long overdue.

Before everyone gets too excited though, remember code references don't nail down new features merely show that they have been in the minds of the company. Notably in recent times both the code of the iPod touch third generation and iPad have suggested they'd be equipped with inbuilt cameras and while these are likely to appear in their next generations they didn't make it into the products we got.

That said, I'm cautiously optimistic.

Links:

via 9 to 5 Mac

via TUAW

Ryan131

April 12, 2010, 4:31 am

Haven't there been code hooks found in the past which only work on souped-up prototypes?





I seem to remember something about some code to support a video output chipset that is not inside production models...?

Jay4d0

April 12, 2010, 5:46 am

I hope they dont do something stupid and make video calling only compatible between iphones and macs like ichat is now, and if it is video calling then it should work with all other phones too, and hope that they allow other apps to use the frount facing camera too for something like skype video calls which would most likely be far more useful esp. over wifi





also you say 'popular IM' but of everyone I know, who owns a mac, they all just use live messenger and skype, I would guess because of the multiplatform compatibility

savant

April 12, 2010, 10:31 am

Both features are of no significance to my day-to-day use of iPhone. The UK cellular networks can&#8217t even tap in the full potential of 7.2Mbps which iPhone 3GS is capable of.

Greg17b

April 12, 2010, 11:48 am

Hell, just being able to bluetooth to any phone other than an iPhone would be welcome!

Smithfield Building

April 12, 2010, 3:30 pm

The problem with iChat is as posted above really - I want to talk to my friends because they are my friends, regardless of whether they use a Mac or a PC. Saying that though I don't think using an IM has crossed my mind since Facebook implemented chat. That and the fact free texts are thrown at you from every carrier.

Gordon394

April 12, 2010, 6:05 pm

@Ryan - yes, that's what I mention in the article: such code can appear in early testing, but not make it to the final production model.


@savant - not sure why you think the addition of a camera flash is irrelevant based on UK network's data speeds?


@Greg - agreed!

savant

April 12, 2010, 7:14 pm

@Gordon - I was referring to video conferencing calls with UK network's data speed.

Keithe6e

April 12, 2010, 8:48 pm

@Savant: Video conferencing on the Iphone should be very low bandwidth, even in the days of 56K modems video conferencing worked. I'm sure based on the speed of my 3G phone doing internet it's got plenty of bandwidth for it, it's not like your asking it to stream Full HD. :)

jingyeow

April 16, 2010, 12:44 am

I remember when msn messenger was all the rage. Now it's pretty much been deserted with facebook chat, and the fact messenger contacts spam extremely frequently. I know my account keeps sending out spam to other people, and I receive plenty from my contacts. Moving to gmail was the best thing I've done in the digital world in a long time.

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