Today's MWSF 2008 Announcements: The Untold Story
Here are some details that have come to light as the day has rolled along.
iPhone/iPod Touch Location Technology
While some had speculated that Apple would simply be incorporating Google's recently announced location services into the new software, Apple has actually used a hybrid technology that uses both Google's data (using cellular triangulation) and data from Skyhook Wireless (using a database of known Wi-Fi hotspot locations) to pinpoint the location. This enables the location feature to be used on the iPod touch, which cannot use Google's service due to lack of cellular capabilities, but can utilize Skyhook's Wi-Fi database.
iPod Touch Paid Upgrade
The $20 upgrade for the iPod touch software was met with a cool reception both by the keynote crowd and by MacRumors readers. While we have not received an official reason for the move, we remind users that only the iPhone and Apple TV are currently using Apple's "subscription revenue" accounting model. As such, Apple has explained that it can give software updates for those devices, when possible, for free. The iPod touch does not fall under this model, and therefore under Apple's reasoning, a major feature upgrade must incur a charge.
We have heard that all current iPod touch models already in the distribution channel without the new software have been immediately discounted by $20 to accommodate for the upgrade fee.