Apple’s iPhone 4.0 beta hints at front video camera

invisibleSHIELD case for iPad“A discovery in the iPhone 4.0 beta firmware may have helped confirm talk of a front-facing camera on a future iPhone model,” Electronista reports.

“Using either the iPhone app iStat or the external Activity Monitor development tool shows a reference to an ‘iChatAgent’ process that normally only shows up on regular Macs,” Electronista reports. “Since iPhone 4.0 doesn’t have an iChat equivalent of its own as of the first beta, it’s implied by TUAW that the process would be used for video chats.”

Electronista reports, “It’s unclear whether Apple would use any front camera for conventional video calling or solely as a component of instant messaging.”]

Full article here.

14 Comments

  1. Given the recent upswing in “news” about the radiation hazard of holding a call-phone next to your head for long times, maybe enticing people to switch to iChat A/V calls is a civic “Good”. This moves the phone far enough away from the brain to limit the hazard significantly.
    Of course, those dimwits who think it’s a Good Idea to call or text while driving … are we better off without them? Many of them are semi-aware of the danger and compensate – re: their safety – by buying much larger vehicles (so they would be un-injured while those they hit are KILLED).

  2. I’d actually an iPhone with a much-improved battery, even if it means it’s a bit thicker.

    I use my iPhone extensively throughout the day, and my battery can’t make it without charging at some point.

    One full day of near-continuous use would be ideal.

  3. Don’t know if there is a product out there yet but couldn’t a periscope-like device (using mirrors or prisms) attach to the top of an iPhone, the accepting lens facing the user (front facing) and re-direct the image to the existing camera’s back facing lens?

    And the equivalent “iChat-type” app…

    (obviously, the iPad would/could use a straight forward “iSight” attachment wired to the bottom connector.)

  4. I think it’s unlikely that Apple will release an iPhone with a front-facing camera. It’s kind of redundant in view of Apple’s minimalist design and would tax the already enfeebled ATT too much. Video chat on a phone sounds really cool to me too, but really how often would you need/be able to use it?

  5. I would use a front facing camera a lot. I use video chat for conference calls quite often and it would be nice to be able to do it on my phone… especially if I could do it over 3G, but I would imagine it would be a wifi only option sue to broadband usage.

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