Oct 08

We had reported that the forthcoming 2.2 Firmware for the iPhone, which has been seeded to developers, contain a useful feature to turn off auto-correction, but there are more goodies that come with 2.2. Other known things are aesthetics modifications to Safari and the App Store. New, however, are the ability to view Google Street View and the ability to send Japanese emoji icons, which are very popular in Japan.

Previous analysts have speculated that the iPhone won’t take off in Japan because it lacks the cultural connection to the island nation. Japanese are big on their emoji icons, which are similar to emoticons, but feature icon symbols for useful words, like house.

Google Street View has been demonstrated on Google’s competing platform, the Android operating system, which is due to be released on T-Mobile on a handset called the G1 in the very short future. The cool thing about Street View on Android is that it uses the accelerometer on the G1 to pan around. This is known as “Compass Mode” on that platform. In this manner, users don’t need to flick around to pan. If the user turns, the view turns. It’s very similar to being in a mini 3-D simulation environment. Hopefully, some of those cool features make it to the iPhone, which has the hardware and graphics capabilities.

According to MacRumors, These changes are not visible to the end users. Apple has taken care to hide these features. Instead, what was noted in the latest beta release to developers was “compatibility testing” so there is no telling if Apple will pull these features before the release of 2.2 to the general public. Similarly, in earlier builds of the 2.1 Firmware update, developers were given a chance to play with push notifications; the feature was pulled before general release.

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