Apple itself is setting the record straight and says that iPhone 3G's GPS mapping unit is as powerful as in dedicated devices. Also, cut-and-paste is still a possibility, and outside testers have found the iPhone's battery life the best in its class.

Contradicting claims by the New York Times' David Pogue, who was told by Apple that iPhone 3G's GPS chip is too small to work for turn-by-turn navigation, Apple product chief Greg Woswiak tells ExtremeTech that the hardware is just as capable as in other GPS-aware phones, many of which provide live driving directions.

Instead, the lack of an existing program from Apple or someone else to handle real-time road navigation is due to "complicated issues," according to the executive. He expects full navigation functionality to be expanded once developers are given more time.

"It will evolve," Joswiak says. "I think our developers will amaze us."

At least two veteran companies of the GPS industry, TeleNav and TomTom, have already said they are developing fuller navigation software than what's offered with the iPhone edition of Google Maps.

Read more: AppleInsider | iPhone 3G clarifications: battery life, GPS, office apps.

Do I sense marketing spin? Especially marketing spin designed to make people money by not building in certain functionalities, so that other developers can sell an app to take advantage of capabilities?

Nah … couldn’t be.