iPhone coming June 29, three ads launched (updated)

Announced in January for a June release, Apple’s iPhone finally has a street date: June 29, 2007. In a series of three commercials now found on Apple.com, and beginning to air on television, Apple announces the date while touting the phone’s versatility as an iPod, cell phone, and mobile Internet device. The commercials, “Never Been an iPod,” “How To,” and “Calamari,” show the phone switching effortlessly from feature to feature, rendering easy and straightforward transitions from media playback to e-mailing, web browsing, and Google Maps.

Each commercial ends with the disclaimer that “(u)se requires minimum new 2 year activation plan” with AT&T. No major new features are shown, but the screens now highlight the AT&T logo and include a Bluetooth icon alongside the battery life indicator at the screen’s upper right corner. Several of the icons have also changed slightly in position from their original places; consequently, it’s unclear whether you can manually rearrange the icons on the system’s home menu, or whether they’ve been permanently moved. A demonstration of email functionality now contains a bottom-of-screen “Updated” listing noting when email was last synchronized, plus two-line summaries of message content rather than the one-line summaries shown in prior demonstrations.

Additional small details are also evident. The unit’s top now clearly shows a concave headphone port, rather than the purely flat surface found on the tops of iPods; how this may impact headphone plug compatibility is unclear. Apple now also refers to its Safari web application as “Safari” on the main menu rather than as “Web,” keeping the iPhone application’s branding consistent with the OS X application.

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