Details of the new iPhone were released this week, as we reported on earlier, by technology blog Gizmodo. If this model is as found, it will indeed have a front facing camera, which could allow mobile phone video chat or calls! There has been evidence since iPhone OS 3.2 for the iPad of video calls in the code and even today in OS 4.0 beta 1 there is evidence of video call capability. Video calls were expected on the iPad, but rumours suggested the hardware was removed at last minute, possible due to the technology not being ready.
Now, what if Apple can revolutionise the way people currently use mobile phone video calls or video chat on mobiles, whatever you might like to call it – i.e. nobody makes mobile phone video calls currently! Mobile phone users never really adopted the technology into a feasibly use. Partially due to the way mobile phone networks marketed the technology and failed to make it function cross network and stability issues.
If Apple were to create some form of video streaming – maybe an ichat application… video calls with other iphone users may be possible. The uses for video calls would be endless on the iPhone, catching up with family living abroad, quick video conference call at work… who knows!
The key to video calls on the iPhone is to take the functionality requirements of away from the mobile phone networks, use current internet technologies, rather than ask mobile networks to set up a function. We have seen in the past how long it can take mobile phone networks to adopt technologies. Has anyone seen visual voicemail three years on… O2 Ireland…?
Would mobile phone networks be able to handle additional traffic? Maybe? Perhaps if the video quality were reduced for 3G, and increased quality over wifi? We can really see Apple doing here what they did with the way people view the internet on their mobile phone. One thing is for sure, the days of 1GB allowance will soon need to be a thing of the past!
It is all a series of “what ifs” for the moment! Let’s watch Apple with interest.