Apple has just officially unveiled the new iPhone 4S at its "Let's Talk iPhone" event in Cupertino today, capping a longer-than-usual product cycle with a relatively mild refresh of the original iPhone 4. As expected, we're getting a dual-core Apple A5 processor that's up to twice as fast and graphics that are seven times faster - same as the iPad - and the camera is up to 8 megapixels with a faster sensor, f/2.4 aperture, 1080p video capture with image stabilization and noise reduction, and a claimed 73 percent improvement in light sensitivity per pixel over the old 5-megapixel unit.
On the antenna front, Apple looks to be trying to avoid a repeat of the iPhone 4 drama with a new system that "intelligently" switches between antennas, promising better call quality. Don't expect top-of-the-line data speeds: the new model supports 14.4Mbps HSPA, better than the 4′s 7.2Mbps but not as speedy as the newest 21Mbps HSPA+ and LTE devices on the market. Happily, there won't be separate models for CDMA carriers - the device is advertised as a true world phone, meaning that regardless of what carrier you're on, you should be able to roam on GSM around the world. Battery life is promised at 8 hours on 3G (up from 7 hours), 6 hours of 3G browsing, 9 hours of Wi-Fi browsing, 10 hours of video, and 40 hours of music.
As for pricing and availability, it'll come in three configurations: 16GB for $199, 32GB for $299, and a new 64GB setup for $399, all on a two-year contract. Pre-orders kick off on October 7th with retail availability following on October 14th. Apple has also confirmed availability of the iPhone 4S in Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Japan and the UK on the 14th as well, with pre-orders beginning on October 7th.