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iPhone 5 rumor rollup for the week ending Feb. 2

John Cox | Feb. 3, 2012
That noise echoing through the iOSsphere is the sound of Chinese workers clamoring to be allowed to build the Next iPhone.

"We've been told that training material for an update to the outfit's internal account management application includes screenshots (one of which you can see above) that show a new section labeled 'account level data plans,'" he writes. "The new section apparently shows an account level charge for data allowance and a 9.99 charge per line."

Both Verizon and AT&T last year said they were working on creating new data plans that would let a family, or presumably a business, buy a bucket of "data minutes" and then share them, or share them among multiple devices instead of needing separate cellular accounts, and bills, for a phone, tablet, and laptop.

But the change is a complex one for mobile carriers, as outlined in an October 2011 white paper, "All in the Family: The New Requirements of Shared Data Plans" by Infonetics Research analysts Shira Levine and Richard Webb.

There's still no official word on when shared data plans will appear, but how can the carriers ignore the opportunity to celebrate the expected Q-1 arrival of the iPad 3, or maybe the Q-2 or Q-3 or Q-4 arrival of iPhone 5?

iPhone 5 will flaws so Apple can "fix" them in iPhone 6

This is a nearly perfect example of the iOSphere hivemind at work. In a self-described "rant" at, Desire Athow first runs through all the things we don't know about iPhone 5. That would be, well, everything, including as, he points out, the name.

(Just for fun, you can contrast Athow's "Apple iPhone 5 : What We DON'T Know" with Richard Goodwin's "Apple iPhone 5: Everything we know" post at KnowYourMobile. The fun part is realizing the two bloggers are saying the same thing.)

"There have been a huge number of rumours but the overwhelming majority of them are likely to be nothing more than speculation, hearsay, hoaxes or daydreams in which Apple may even have played a major role," Athow rants.

Rollup is deeply sympathetic but to describe the iOSsphere as "nothing more than" these is, surely, excessive. Isn't it?

Athow cuts to the chase. "In a nutshell, the followup to the iPhone 4S will come out with whatever features Apple thinks is reasonable enough to lure tens of millions of users into its online and offline stores while making sure that it keeps enough flaws and aspirations for the subsequent versions. After all, that's the exact strategy Apple used for the iPod range which has lasted for more than 10 years now and seen 22 different versions of what is, in essence, a portable audio player."

When you put it that way, it's just so clear. Rollup can clearly envision the engineers of Apple's Flaw and Aspirations Group, gathering in Cupertino to discuss which iPhone flaws to fix, which flaws to leave to still bedevil users, which soaring aspirations to fulfill and which to send plummeting down in flames. A tweak here, a tweak there, and voila! iPhone 5, with plenty of flaws and aspirations left over to warrant iPhone 6.


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