On June 17, 2009, Apple will unleash the third major version of its iPhone system software, iPhone Software Update 3.0. This relatively minor update fixes a number of the issues I complained about two years ago with the initial iPhone release--including landscape support across apps like Mail and Notes--and adds a number of new features and applications. Key among these are Cut, Copy and Paste support, universal Spotlight Search, the new Voice Memos application, and the ability to purchase and rent movies and TV shows from the iTunes Store wirelessly.

Some key iPhone 3.0 features will not be made available in the US, at least not at first, which somewhat dampens the enthusiasm for this update. The first, full MMS support, is coming from AT&T "in late summer." The second and more important update, Internet tethering, will allow (non-US) iPhone users to use their iPhone as a wireless modem for their PCs, via Bluetooth or USB. No word yet on whether we'll ever get this feature, but knowing AT&T, it will come with an added monthly charge if and when it does.

In any event, the iPhone remains the best smart phone choice for Windows users. Here are a few shots of the 3.0 software update.

Apple iPhone 3.0 Software Update   Apple iPhone 3.0 Software Update
iPhone 3.0 home screen (left); Spotlight Search screen (right).

Apple iPhone 3.0 Software Update   Apple iPhone 3.0 Software Update
Spotlight search segregates results by type (left and right).

Apple iPhone 3.0 Software Update
New Voice Memos app.

Apple iPhone 3.0 Software Update   Apple iPhone 3.0 Software Update
Mail app now supports Inbox searching (left and right).

Apple iPhone 3.0 Software Update
Mail (and several other apps) now work in landscape mode as well, answering an early complaint of mine.

Apple iPhone 3.0 Software Update   Apple iPhone 3.0 Software Update
You can now buy and rent movies directly from the device (left and right).

Apple iPhone 3.0 Software Update
The Stocks app also picks up new functionality via landscape support.