While it won’t be the first cell phone to come with this kind of feature, this is still quite the surprise. Word is that the upcoming iPhone update will come with an integrated FM transmitter. Read that again. FM transmitter. This means that it may or may not be designed to pick up your local radio station, but you can beam your iTunes-fueled music to your car stereo over the FM waves.
This news comes hot on the heels of yesterday’s revealing, where we learned about the possible inclusion of a 3.2 megapixel camera and 802.11n Wi-Fi in the upcoming iPhone. We know that Apple will have a new touchscreen cell phone for us later this year and it’s starting to sound better and better by the day.
The interesting thing is that Apple is not investing in several separate chips to handle all of this broadcasting, because the supposedly ordered Broadcom chip will handle the 802.11a/b/g, Bluetooth 2.0, and the FM transmission.
If this is the case, companies like Griffin will take a huge hit to their FM transmitter business. They’ve got more than a few of these things. They’ll still be useful for iPods, but the iPhone represents a fairly sizable market.
Take the FM transmission side of the new iPhone as a distinct possibility for now, but nothing has been confirmed (or denied). Stay tuned for more leaks from Cupertino.