Apple's WWDC: Ten things we wanted but didn't get

Ten disappointments from this year's Worldwide Developers Conference

Apple's new iPhone 3G S is officially on its way to store shelves. The highlight of the company's Worldwide Developers Conference keynote Monday, the iPhone 3G S is set to become available across America next Friday, June 19. The device is said to be twice as fast as the existing 3G model, with greater storage, longer battery life, and the introduction of long-missing options such as cut-and-paste and expanded landscape keyboard functionality.

While the phone and its accompanying iPhone 3.0 OS provide plenty of added features, however, a lot of other Apple elements -- both iPhone-related and otherwise -- failed to come to fruition on Monday. Here are 10 things we wanted but didn't get from Apple's WWDC.

1. The Apple Tablet

Much of the tech community expected Apple to unveil some sort of tablet-like device at the WWDC this week. Reports suggested a 10-inch touchscreen could be coming our way, priced between $500 and $700 and running a Mac OS X-like operating system with multitouch capabilities.

Despite its absence on Monday, the tablet may still be on tap: Some analysts believe the device could debut later this year or even in 2010.

2. The Elusive 'iPhone Nano'

Folks have been buzzing about the so-called "iPhone Nano" for years now. While a $99 iPhone did technically surface at this year's WWDC -- the iPhone 3G will drop down to that price -- the introduction of a scaled-back, simpler iPhone with lower service rates never happened.

Nano? Nano? Bueller?

3. The iPhone FM Transmitter

One of the biggest Apple rumors to hit the blogosphere this spring was alleged evidence of an iPhone FM transmitter chip. The chip would allow for faster wireless connections and FM transmissions, some blogs claimed. Their signal must have been fuzzy, though, as the 3G S is, by all appearances, FM-free.

4. A New iPod

Many Apple observers were looking for some sort of iPod update to accompany the iPhone announcement. Aside from giving current iPod Touch owners the option to upgrade their OS for $9.99, though, the iPod front remained quiet -- somewhat of a surprise given all the Zune HD talk in the tech world these days.

5. Adobe Flash Support

It might have been a shot in the dark, but support for Adobe Flash has remained one of the iPhone and iPod's most glaring and discussed omissions. Blame a "technical challenge" or blame corporate politics, but the tough truth is that Flash is still annoyingly absent.

6. Removable Batteries

The iPhone 3G S has boosted battery life, yet it's missing the ability to pull the battery out altogether and toss in a replacement when you run out of juice. Some Apple watchers discovered apparent patents back in February suggesting a removable battery could be on the way. It's patently clear, though, that the option hasn't come to life just yet.

7. iProd and iFPGA

Two clues uncovered in March led tech-heads on a hunt to unscramble the letters "iProd" and "iFPGA." Someone noticed references to the codes while looking through the iPhone 3.0 software, spawning talk of mysterious new iPhone- or iPod-related devices. The scavenger hunt seems to have become a wild goose chase at this point, leaving our curiosity irritatingly unsatisfied.

8. MMS and Tethering Support (That Can Actually Be Used)

The new iPhone offers multimedia messaging (MMS) and tethering support, which is great -- except that AT&T, America's only iPhone carrier, doesn't yet offer either option. The restriction is stirring up ample frustration among AT&T iPhone users. As of now, AT&T is keeping quiet about tethering and saying only that it expects to have MMS support by "late summer."

9. Carrier Expansion

June may be too soon, but speculation over the iPhone heading to Verizon has thus far remained unfounded. The aforementioned AT&T issues, though, are causing some to believe Apple could be moving closer to such a shift.

10. Steve Jobs

Gauging by the headlines, one might have surmised it to be a sure thing that Steve Jobs would appear at Monday's keynote event. Despite reports that Jobs would be back on the job sometime this month, Apple's main man didn't show his face on Monday. In fact, his name didn't even really come up -- no mention, no update, nothing. Ah, the mystery.

What Else?

That's our pick of 10 things missing from Apple's WWDC, but the list doesn't stop there. What were you expecting or hoping to see that didn't surface at this year's Apple WWDC? Or were you pleased as punch with the results? Hop into the comments section below and get in on the debate.

Connect with JR Raphael on Twitter (@jr_raphael) or via his Web site, jrstart.com.

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JR Raphael

PC World (US online)
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