It has been called "the rumor that wouldn't die" at least that is how some are referring to the repeatedly denied entry level iPhone rumors.
But according to some new information over at Fudzilla it looks like the stagnant economic times coupled with entry level touch and multi-media phones by rivals like BlackBerry might change Apple's mind.
If the David Stellmack has his information correct a new $99 (US) iPhone could hit the market soon.
This phone would be little more than a Low-Res 8GB iPhone 1.0 but would still fill in a gap that Apple is currently missing.
It looks like the rumors we reported on a few days ago might have a nugget of truth in them. Earlier in the week we pointed to an article stating that Microsoft would be partnering up with nVidia to make its next generation of smart phones.
Today we see another story indicating that Tegra (nVidia's SOC ARM officering) will be used in MS' next gen smart phone. This is possibly where all the nPhone rumors have their basis.
nVidia has been hard at work on Tegra and needs a success with this while Microsoft desperately needs a makeover for its boring Windows Mobile OS.
Combining the visual computing power of Tegra with an updated Win Mobile could give MS a real competitor to the iPhone.
Of course it looks like Tegra might pop up in the next Gen iPhone too.
With all the new players and new technology the Smart Phone market is looking to be very interesting in 2009.
Asus and Garmin have joined forces to launch a new smart phone.
The new phone will be called the Garmin-Asus nuvifone G60 and will be the first mobile phone that is Location-Centric.
I am sure you are wondering what that means exactly, well in simple terms it means it is a GPS device at heart and a smart phone 2nd. This is in contrast to most GPS enabled phones where the GPS functions are secondary or an afterthought.
The G60 will be launched in Barcelona, Spain during the Mobile World Congress trade show which kicks off on February the 16th.
While details of the agreement are mostly confidential, it is known that Asus and Garmin will share profits from the device as well as distribution.
Just the other day Toshiba announced its latest TG01 smartphone which brings a whole host of new features and GUI improvements to the table. It is aimed to directly take on the HTC Touch HD and iPhone 3G.
The Toshiba TG01 is a 9.9mm thick Windows Mobile 6.1 smartphone, with a 4.1-inch WVGA 800 x 480 384k pixel resistive touchscreen, 3G HSPA, WiFi, GPS and A-GPS. It also features Toshiba's own 3D user interface, and is the first device to use Qualcomm's 1GHz Snapdragon QSD2850 chipset.
While at the London launch yesterday, Slashgear were able to get some live footage of the TG01 in action which you can view below:
A day later and now Toshiba have their own promotional video of it on the web.
There may be a new iPhone in town soon. At least that seems to be what is going to happen if the code inside the latest firmware is correct.
According to MacRumors there is a mention of iPhone2,1 inside the latest firmware (2.2.1). This type of numbering follows Apple's traditional nomenclature for the iToy line. The first iPhone was iPhone1,1 the 3G is iPhone1,2 etc.
What this new numbering means is anyone's guess. But after yesterday's iPhone concept art it is certainly fun to speculate.
A company called PINoptic has a new method for securing your smart phone that it claims will make it 37 times more secure.
The way the software works is to replace the traditional numbered PIN with a picture based system. The images will show up on each of the 10 numbered buttons; however they will do so randomly. This means that someone watching you will not be able to memorize the sequence but would have to carefully watch the actual images you press.
PINoptics claims that someone would have to watch a person login over 10 times before they would be able to figure out the login.
Smartphones are become more of a target as they often contain personal or work e-mails as well other personal information.
Currently, the most popular way to secure a smartphone is using a four-digit PIN. But all hackers have to do is watch someone punch in their PIN to learn the pattern.
PINoptics software allows users to set a pass code using images rather than numbers. The images are randomly placed on different numbers or letters each time someone logs in. Users push the correct image sequence to get access to the device, rather than the same number pattern. This makes it more difficult for anyone watching a user log in to figure out the PIN simply by watching which keys are pressed.
In fact, PINoptic claims that a hacker would have to watch someone enter their login at least 10 times before being able to crack the code.
Several banks and credit card companies have also beefed up security to their Web sites by using pictures as a way to verify identity. Some Web sites require users to click on an image after they've signed in with a username and password to authenticate access.