Update: All your base are belong to iPhone

Apple's latest toy is loaded, and it could set the bar for mobile devices across the board.

Apple iPhone
We're this close to making out with a photo of the iPhone. Declan McCullagh/CNET News.com

With the iPhone, Apple just may have an everything-killer on its hands. Is it the ultimate gadget? If so, is it worth $600 for eight gigs of its magicks? Or $500 for four gigs? Them's PS3 prices!

Granted, we haven't even laid a finger on the thing yet, let alone reviewed it. That said, Apple seems to have killed several birds with one stone by addressing some of the iPod's shortcomings while creating a buzz-inducing all-in-one supergadget that everyone will want. And here is why.

  • It's the first widescreen/touchscreen video iPod, which is good for a few million sales right there.
  • The iPhone features integrated Wi-Fi capabilities, which means we may finally have a Wi-FiPod on our hands. iTunes can become fully mobile, allowing downloaders to purchase and listen to new songs on the go. A computer may no longer be needed as a middle man to manage your tunes. (Note: According to Kent German's iPhone First Take, it's still unclear whether the iPhone will allow users to download music directly from iTunes. And if not, that would be a shame.)
  • The iPhone runs Mac OS X, and Steve Jobs made references to the phone being able to run full versions of Mac software, not just mobile apps.
  • It borrows a fun idea from the Nintendo Wii: built-in motion sensors, which automatically adjust the iPhone's screen orientation and energy output.
  • It borrows fun ideas from Microsoft and Sony: Origami and the ultramobile PC. It also makes both concepts infinitely cooler and less clunky...so far, at least.
  • This thing is downright purdy.
  • It boasts a built-in 2-megapixel camera, which equals some of the best camera phones on the market today. Sony Ericsson's 3.2-megapixel K790a phone still rules the roost on the camera-phone front.
  • And we haven't even gotten to the part where it's a phone. The "Visual Voicemail" and call-management features look innovatively simple thanks to the nifty touchscreen UI. Add the iPhone's quad-band world phone capabilities and Apple's undying cool factor, and the iPhone becomes a mighty appealing buy for anyone needing a new phone, a new music player, a mobile productivity tool, a cool new toy, or all of the above.

Again, we haven't even held the iPhone yet, let alone played with OS X on the iPhone. That alone almost makes it unfair to compare it to other smart phones on the market. But on paper, the iPhone out-specs some of today's trendiest, slimmest, and top-rated smart phones.

Price Carrier OS Wireless Cellular enhancement protocol Depth Weight Screen size Resolution Camera
Apple iPhone $599 for 8GB with two-year contract; $499 for 4GB Cingular Mac OS X Wi-Fi (802.11b/g), Bluetooth 2.0 GSM, EDGE 0.46 inches 4.8 oz. 3.5 inch diagonal 320 x 480 2-megapixel
Samsung BlackJack $200 with two-year contract Cingular Windows Mobile 5.0 Bluetooth 2.0 GSM, EDGE, GPRS, UMTS 0.5 inches 3.5 oz. 2.25 inch diagonal 240 x 320 1.3 megapixel
Motorola Q $200 with two-year contract Verizon Windows Mobile 5.0 EV-DO, Bluetooth 1.2, IrDA CDMA 0.47 inches 4.1 oz. 2.5 inch diagonal 320 x 240 1.3 megapixel
T-Mobile Dash $200 with two-year contract T-Mobile Windows Mobile 5.0 Wi-Fi (802.11b/g), Bluetooth 2.0, IrDA 1.2 GSM, EDGE, GPRS 0.5 in. 4.2 oz 2.5 inch diagonal 320 x 240 1.3 megapixel
Cingular 8525 $400 with two-year contract Cingular Windows Mobile 5.0 Wi-Fi (802.11b/g), Bluetooth 2.0, IrDA GSM, EDGE, GPRS, UMTS 0.9 in. 6.2 oz 2.8 inch diagonal 240 x 320 1.9 megapixel
Sony Ericsson P990i $849 to $1,099 Unlocked Symbian OS 9.1 Wi-Fi (802.11b/g), Bluetooth, IrDA GSM, GPRS, UMTS 1 in. 5.3 oz. 2.5 inch diagonal 240 x 320 2 megapixel

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