iPhone gets GPS - sorta - and a virus

The next version of the iPhone software  (1.1.3) is reported to feature a Google Maps positioning system that doesn't require any hardware upgrad

The next version of the iPhone software  (1.1.3) is reported to feature a Google Maps positioning system that doesn't require any hardware upgrades. Think of it as GPS on the cheap.

Google's My Location system works out where you are by triangulating mobile phone signals rather than satellites. The free service already available for the free Google Maps app for Java, Blackberry and Symbian - I tried it on the Samsung F700 and was astonished by its accuracy.

Google reckons My Location finds your position down to the nearest 100m, but  in London it seemed much more accurate, often giving me an exact position lock.

The new software update also allows you to drop custom pins into Google Maps, send a single text to multiple contacts and rearrange the icons on your home screen.

However, there's still no copy and paste feature or Flash plug-in. And, of course, the new software makes it much harder to hack the phone and install unofficial third-party apps or unlock it from the official networks.

Oh, and there's more bad news for owners of hacked phones - the first virus has appeared for iPhone, in the shape of an update to the unofficial 'Erica's Utilities' software. Called '113 Prep', the application does nothing more than display the word 'shoes' - until you uninstall it, at which point it deletes files from the /bin directory, rendering some applications useless.

No doubt they'll be plenty more iPhone news next week, when I'll be in San Francisco for the Macworld show.