iPhone 3.1: Non-Destructive Video Editing, Bluetooth Voice Control, Vibrating Icon Moves, and More!

Early word from TiPb commenters and the Twitter show some new iPhone 3.1 features found already:

  • Non-destructive video editing means trimming a clip no longer saves over the original video but gives you the option to "Save as copy..."
  • Voice Control now works over Bluetooth
  • iPhone vibrates when moving icons
  • Updated AT&T profile to 4.2
  • Updated modem firmware to 5.08.01

Behind the scenes changes abound as well:

  • Improvements to OpenGL and Quartz.
  • APIs to allow third party apps to access videos and edit them.

Update: Yes, MMS buttons appear to be back for AT&T users, but as with early iphone 3.0 Betas, they're non-functional on standard devices. Whether they survive to the official release this time (they were removed in late 3.0 Betas), who knows?

[Thanks to Chris, Muero and WhenWillApple]

Rene Ritchie

Rene Ritchie is one of the most respected Apple analysts in the business, reaching a combined audience of over 40 million readers a month. His YouTube channel, Vector, has over 90 thousand subscribers and 14 million views and his podcasts, including Debug, have been downloaded over 20 million times. He also regularly co-hosts MacBreak Weekly for the TWiT network and co-hosted CES Live! and Talk Mobile. Based in Montreal, Rene is a former director of product marketing, web developer, and graphic designer. He's authored several books and appeared on numerous television and radio segments to discuss Apple and the technology industry. When not working, he likes to cook, grapple, and spend time with his friends and family.

  • Give me more info, lol... Your doing a great job keeping me informed. All of the updates sound awesome so far :) Cross your fingers fellow AT&T customers.
  • And 5g 102.1 Mbps networking! Yay
  • I am so happy right now. I just wish I was a developer so I can see it right now. Just can't afford to pay $100 bucks to sign-up. Saving for an iMac :)
  • MMS? PLEASE AT&T! Seriously its getting pretty ridiculous
  • Hey rene i like the new mobile theme switch down there. Nice
  • How long does the average Beta testing phase last before being released? Also anyone know if they addressed the app icon switching in the 3.1 Beta. Thanks :)
  • @Addison
    Your comment seems a bit out of place. They said it was coming in late summer, so I wouldn't expect it until August or later. I agree that it's a bit ridiculous that they can't have it on right now. (I find the claims about needing to manually "flip the switch" on each iPhone questionable.) But we've lived without it for this long, we should be able to go another few weeks.
    So it seems that these features mainly improve iPhone 3GS functionality with little for the rest of us. I'm still hoping that an update adds a landscape weekly mode to the calendar app. A guy can dream...
  • Yeah I was ready to ask if any news of the AT&T update activated the MMS features on the phone end. Then I saw that frank was so happy right now. Someone get frank a puppy pad fast!.
  • Mms option is back
  • iRoc Says: "Then I saw that frank was so happy right now. Someone get frank a puppy pad fast!" I think you maybe right. LOL! :)
  • MMS option for AT&T looks like its back, but will it survive to the release version? Only if AT&T is ready....
  • APIs to allow third party apps to access and edit videos?? Yes!!! So glad they added this.
    Be forewarned, iPhone videos are really gonna flood the Internet!!
  • @Jason How exactly is my comment out of place? I saw people discussing it in a previous post and that this update updates the phones AT&T profile so I was just voicing some frustration and seeing if anyone knew if this was going to unlock MMS for us or not.
  • Really excited for the update and the MMS! I don't understand what update to AT&T 4.2 profile though....what does that mean?
  • @Jason I dont see how his comment was so "out of place"
  • I really hope they submit this version through with the mss picture option next to it. thatll mean at&t's ready.
    i get its a big task, but they realy should be ready by now. We pay huge bills every month , the least they could do is give us MMS. come on, its available on nearly every cell phone.
  • Hopefully fixing the dropping wifi was near top of the list!
    Thanks Rene, first with the goods again! Reminds us all why you guys are the best.
  • I'm personally excited for voice control over Bluetooth.
  • So I know they changed the ipcc file but is the MMS button visible again?
  • Well cdudek it means it updates the carrier settings that are:
    1 blocking the mms
    2 is putting the right @carrier.net for all carriers that an iPhone user would need in the US
    3 it means that Jason is a pesimist that believes nothing can happen before a stated date. Even though there was no date given just a later this summer. Well it's almost later already.
  • Talked to my AT&T rep earlier this week and she said MMS would be available at the end of July. This beta release makes me think that could be true. I'm keeping my fingers crossed.
  • Reminder: we can't keep comments up that offer to sell or otherwise provide Apple firmware by breaking NDA and licensing agreements.
    Also, some people get scammed or stuck when a dev won't/can't update them to later betas, so novice users should avoid at all costs.
  • to get mms on 3.0 at&t ON MAC
    1) download the carrier update http://www.crunchgear.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/06/iphonetetheringfile...
    2) open terminal type: defaults write com.apple.iTunes carrier-testing -bool TRUE
    3) open itunes connect iphone and hold option and click check for update
    4)update with the file you just downloaded
    5)reboot your phone and go to setting>general>network>cellular data
    6)go down to MMS type in these setting respectively wap.cingular, wap@cingulargprs.com, CINGULAR1, mmsc.cingular.com,
    7)restart you phone and you will have the mms icon and it will be working!!!
  • @DWALLS: Yes. And then figure out a way to get AT&T to remove the MMS block on iPhone accounts which they WILL NOT DO. You have cut and pasted some great info from hundreds of other forums which will allow you to get a camera icon in your messaging app and then pretend to send an MMS. Only to have a error message afterward.
  • Well hopefully this beta goes thru with NO REMOVED FEATURES in the master. I have high hopes for mms. Mms not just being pic mail. I'm talking voice memos mms. Contacts. The whole shabang. Hopefully. And I can't help but wonder, ‘Is the vibrating icons only 3GS or the original and 3G also?’ I assume it would be all. But you never know. That also brings up a good subject—Will the iPhone always vibrate whilst in this mode or just when you are selecting the app/dragging the app? If anybody knows those answers let me know. Thanks!
  • well it work for me and suck for everyone else who cant do it then!
  • Voice control doesn't even work for me. I haven't had it successfully make a single correct call yet.
  • DWALLS, do you have AT&T in the U.S?
    because I changed my carrier settings too, and i have an icon so i can send pictures, but every time i try i get an error message because like someone previously said AT&T blocks iphone users from sending MMS. We can, on our phones, but they block it with a code. its so rediculous.
  • I didn't folow DWALLS steps but I did something else where I uploaded an tweaked carrier file to give me tethering (which works!) and MMS icon on messages app. Now the difference that I did was that I went into ATT's website and added the non-iPhone 1500 SMS/MMS plan to my phone and removed the iPhone plan. Now, I receive MMS messages like I should have 2 years ago with this phone, but cannot SEND MMS. I don't have a "Cellular Data" menu option in my phone though...
  • Voice control works like a charm for me. Would be nice to have the option to tell the time though (I couldn't find that).
  • @evilhomer: yes, at&t will switch on your mms. I only placed one call to customer svc and he did it no problem. get a "level 2" tech support on the line.
  • so jp? if i call customer service at AT&T. what do i have to tell them to get them to turn on my MMS? do i have to be a developer? or can i just tell them that i am one and i need them to turn on my MMS for the account? (i already have the ipps with the MMS option enabled.)
  • @jp if i call customer service at AT&T. what do i have to tell them to get them to turn on my MMS? do i have to be a developer? or can i just tell them that i am one and i need them to turn on my MMS for the account? (i already have the ipps with the MMS option enabled.)
  • Whoo hoo! Our service provider here in South Africa (Vodacom) told us after the realease of OS 3.0, that they will have full MMS functionality working with the next software release, which is 3.1!
  • When I had the swirly mms on my iPhone 3G I basicly called ATT and told them I Also have another phone I have which I use mms on and they removed the block for me... Hopefully we will have a jb for 3GS!!
  • If it's going live in S. Africa maybe it will in the US too! Has anyone used this new beta? What exactly does it mean by vibrate when icons are moved?
  • Ass AT&T??
  • A.. S.. S.. AT&T??
  • @evilhomer
    you are correct
  • I can't wait for Voice control over bluetooth! I'd also hope that they update the list of voice commands to actually being able to play a specific song. At the moment you can say "Play songs by Bruce Springsteen" but you can't say "Play Thunder Road by Bruce Springsteen" which would eliminate the need for ever having to take the iphone out of my pocket while walking/driving! Ultimate lazyness!!
  • I wish there updating data connection through Bluetooth, because my Tomtom cannot get data through my 3gs Iphone but with any dummy phone he can do it.
  • it is cool of iPhone OS 3.1. I really like it to death. how marvelous! i am eager to have a try upon these new founded features. look for more related information.
  • What does AT&T Profile 4.2 mean?
  • So what happens to those of us that updated the ipcc? Will we not be able to get working MMS when AT&T releases it?
  • they disabled the numeric battery on the 3g! D:
  • @matt b: I still have the numeric battery percentage meter on build 3.1. Are you using the 3GS?
    @JP: Thanks for the heads up. I'll call and give it a try but thus far, I've had zero luck getting AT&T to remove the MMS block. And I am a developer using the legit software.
  • @Nick: The voice control over bluetooth works very well. Tested it with my Parrot hands free kit in the FJ this morning.
    This build overall is VERY solid. I've only been using it for a few hours but have encountered issues.
  • Have they updated bluetooth to allow volume control when playing music ??
  • @evilhomer
    had a jailbreak during 2.2.1 and had numeric battery installed then upgraded to 3.0 and still had it but had the same one the 3gs has.. just updated to 3.1 and its gone.. must be apple trying to stop people from having that unofficial feature.
  • and also i have a 3g
  • I'm with a lot of you, hoping that ATT is ready for MMS by this release. I'm glad they have included the ability to keep videos too, with a saved trim.. that will be helpful.
  • Is AVRCP Bluetooth supported with 3.1? Somebody please confirm. That's my only complaint with 3.0.
  • In AT&T profile 5.0 tethering and mms are allows so my guess is that thus willl just alllow mms but I'm okay with that.
  • Does anyone know if coming update will allow us to edit recent calls?
    Love these tidbits of info.
  • Installed the 3.1 beta firmware last night, and have noticed a few changes. Besides the features that have already been listed, my Settings Menu has changed... under Settings > General > Network, Cellular Network is no longer listed. I have the 5.0 Carrier Settings, and so Tethering is still listed (and enabled), but no setting to manually enter APN, etc for MMS.
    Also, Pandora no longer works. No idea what the problem is there. Any suggestions?
  • How about a SMS quick reply feature?
    Is it really to hard to implement it. The irealsms guys have done it with great success.
    A lockscreen that uses widgets?
    A way to organize apps?
    A scrolling feature for safari?
    You know something that could really change and expand the capabilities of the phone.
  • Yes I love how you can scroll up in Safari but touching the top but how about a scroll down feature? Also, how about something similiar to Springboard for customization?
  • How about missed call notifications. I cannot beleive this phone does not have the capability. I have had missed call notification on cell phones for almost 20 years now....
  • But it apparently doesn't fix the high-pitched whining noise coming from some users' iPhones. :(
  • @Jeff
    I completely agree. I hate how I have to do the "running thumbs" to scroll down, especially on TiPB comments!!!
    With that said, I don't think any reasonable, common sense features such as quick reply and sbsettings will be implemented because, for some reason, Apple doesn't seem to be governed by logic and reason.
    Thank God for jailbreaking!
  • @Truth
    If you haven't yet, try the new beta version of biteSMS. It is really slick (I believe the beta is 4.1, got to bitesms.com to get Cydia source).
    I noticed irealsms isn't 3.0 supported yet, so I tried bitesms and love it!
  • @Joe McG
    I'll give it a go.
  • Any idea how long before this is released to mere mortals?
  • @Joe McG
    Downloaded and bought. Must have app for texters.
  • @Jared,
    I'm experiencing the same issue. I contacted support at Pandora about it. You may want to do the same if you haven't already just so they know it's not an isolated incident on my phone, which I thought it was as there hasn't been a lot on the web about this.
  • There's some kind of minor font difference - on the Now Playing screen of a 3.1 3G compared to a 3.0 3G, the text up top is a little bit "squished," it looks like it's the same width but shorter.
    I didn't notice differences elsewhere, but the actual black bar for the header is the same height, so that's kind of a weird thing to change.
  • I just emailed this to Apple, these are the top ten things I think need to be fixed on the iPhone now, not counting MMS, as Apple has done their part on that.
    I love 3.0 update, but there are still some things that need to be addressed. I listed the top 10 things that need attention:
    1. 21 million phones have been sold, and all of those users only have 6 tones to notify them of texts? Plus, the of the 6 are awful. 2. Text signatures, there are 10 dollar phones out there that can assign a signature to all your texts, but the best phone in the world cannot do this. 3. Groups for emailing multiple people at once. (moblie me does this but it's not supported on the phone.) 4. Birthdays in your contacts are not considered a subscribed calendar, so you cannot add them to your iPhone. Please add birthdays in address book to calendar, complete with reminders. 5. AVI and WMP support. I would rarely even need to use mail if this worked! 6. Ability to delete files from the phone directly. 7. Fix ringtone reset for Mobile Me customers. 8. Quick disable for landscape. Sometimes my phone will keep switching from portrait to landscape, and it would be nice to turn this on and off. 9. Ability to quickly publish where you are to Mobile Me, Facebook, ect. 10. Add ability to delete one number in history without deleting them all! You can do this for text messages, for for phone numbers, you have only one option, deleting all numbers?
  • @Steve
    I've emailed Pandora, and have yet to receive a reply from them. I've seen a few posts on the developer forums re: the problem. Seems to be universal to all who installed 3.1. I miss Pandora...
  • What do you all think about the voice control feature of the iphone?
  • i found another thing that change on beta 2 ,when you turn off wifi , it despairs the section of ask to join networks and choose a network ...
  • I am hoping for more homescreens and/or a dock that can aldo scroll (meaning that it will give us room for more than 4 icons)
  • Hi, i just dont understand why AT&T in the US wanna wait with mms for iphone. Im swedish and i had the 3gs on the realese day, and hav been able to send mms since the 2 minute it was in my hand. Works flawlessly.
    Imean, they cant complain about the broadband space mms will take, cause all other phones have it, hand has had it since 8 years ago.. Very, very strang, AT&T that is..
  • Can anyone confirm the state of AVRCP? I just got some Bluetooth headphone for my 3GS. Volume control and play/pause work but not skip. I would really like to see skip in 3.1.
  • looking for a cell phone jammer; check out cellphone-jammers[dot]com
  • So... if they're updating the AT&T profile to 4.2 then will MMS work? I thought you needed the 5.0 profile for MMS... :)
  • how does one become a developer? I've always wanted to know that
  • I just updated my 3G iphone to the 3.1 update and can no longer tether my phone. This sucks DAM YOU APPLE!!! It worked flawlessly before on the 3.0.1 version. Well I hope this gets resolved soon it was real nice to use that feature.
  • Have just updated my 3GS to system 3.1
    MMS option is not implemented.
    Repeat: NO MMS.
  • You poor AT&T slaves, I just mms'ed a photo to my friend with my iphone 2g 3.1 :)
  • The Bluetooth STILL doesnt work right! My bluetooth headphones cant control track (although there is limited voice control, the manual track controls STILL DONT WORK!) Voice dialing is iffy at best thru bluetooth. Lots of incorrect dialing! I am appalled that they can't fully implement Bluetooth 2.0 control!AVRCP is NOT working, My bluetooth stereo headphones track control STILL doesnt work, but you can voice dial now...(saying next track/previous/play artist is better than no control at all) Apple software designers need to pull their heads out of their collective azzes!
  • Apple will never allow generic AVRCP to work (ie Bluetooth Track Control) they will force Bluetooth vendors to use Apple Lingos to control iTunes on the Touch, iphone, because then they make on the royalties.
  • THere's an advanced video merging and editing App called Video Ninja on the App Store for only $1.99, not a bad price compared to the other prices.