iPhone 3GS

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iPhone 3GS

iPhone 3GS
Device type iPhone
Model identifier iPhone2,1
Release year 2009
Processor Samsung ARM Cortex A8 800 MHz (600 MHz downclock)
Display 3.5 inch display: 320 x 480 resolution

Actual OS support:

  • Shipped: iPhone OS 3.0*
  • Maximum: iOS 6.1.6

*Was not called iOS until the release of the iPad (2010) and after dispute resolution with Cisco Systems

Network Types: GSM+EDGE, 3G UMTS/HSDPA


  • US: AT&T
  • Rest of world: Orange, T-Mobile (DEU), Vodafone, others

While externally identical to the iPhone 3G, the 3GS was all about speed in its 2009 intro-and little of it had to do with 3G speed, having been well-established on that front. Instead, Apple worked in Samsung's latest Cortex A8 design at 600 MHz (up from the ARM11's 412 but still downclocked) with an improved graphics engine as well as adding draft 802.11n WiFi to the iPhone's already-impressive feature list. Apple also doubled onboard RAM to 256 MB and integrated 7.2 Mb/s HSDPA as well as upping the camera to 3.0 MP and adding assisted GPS. Many other improvements were under-the-hood courtesy iPhone OS 3.0: tap-to-focus, light balancing, and geotagging, just to name a few.

The 3GS was, for its part, Apple's longest-serving iOS device in the US, offered until September 19, 2012. Consequently, it is also the only third-generation iOS device able to run iOS 6, albeit with most features disabled for lack of hardware power.

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