Does the iPhone 3GS camera constantly buffer live video data, in effect pre-caching the images you want before you take them? Birdhouse developer Adam Lisagore thinks so, and says so via his Lonely Sandwich blog:
from the moment you launch the Camera app, data is not only streaming to the viewer, but being cached to memory at full resolution, much like a TiVo with a live broadcast. Where there’s been latency in previous versions of the iPhone hardware/software due to processing limitations, those limitations have been overcome in the iPhone 3GS, closing the gap between intention and result by processing the streaming input from a microsecond before the shutter was released. In essence, the iPhone is constantly storing the picture you want before you even take it.
Daring Fireball confirms this, and after-the-fact, it lines up with a lot of our experiences here at TiPb as well.
Clever indeed, Apple...