As summer edges on and Apple CEO Tim Cook drops his latest hint about new and upcoming products, it's time to start looking to the fall--and, with the change of the seasons, the next generation of Apple's iPhone. Based on the pattern years past, it's exceedingly likely we'll see the next version of the company's smartphone arrive sometime in the next three months. But what will that handset look like? What new features will it sport?
Regardless of what you might have read elsewhere, the only people who really know Apple's plans for the next iPhone are at Apple itself. But here's what we can intelligently surmise from what we know about Apple--along with what we hope to see in the fall.
When, oh when, can I get an iPhone 6?
Serenity Caldwell: If the past is any indicator, it's highly likely we'll get an announcement sometime in early September about a new phone with a mid- to late-September ship date. Last year's model (the iPhone 5s) was announced on September 10 and released on September 20; the iPhone 5 was announced on September 12, 2012 and arrived 9 days later. 2011's iPhone 4s is the outlier: Apple waited until early October before it unleashed that model on the world. But that was also the first year that the iPhone moved to a fass release date, which may account for the timing. If I were a betting woman, however, I'd say we're likely looking at an iPhone announcement in the first three weeks of September. What say you, gents?
Dan Moren: I concur with my esteemed colleague. September not only gets the phone out in plenty of time for the holiday shopping season, but it even lets Apple get some sales (and a potentially big opening weekend) into its fourth-quarter financials. As with past years, expect to see Apple announce about a week to ten days ahead of the device's shipping date, probably with pre-orders happening shortly after the announcement. Also, I'd bet that the company will continue expanding the countries in which the phone initially ships and try to roll them out as fast as possible--hence its rumored order for 70 to 80 million devices.
The size's the thing
Caldwell: This rumor seems to be the industry's primary obsession: the iPhone will "finally" size up and replace the 4-inch screens on the iPhone 5/5s models with 4.7 and 5.5-inch displays. That said, I'm a little underwhelmed by the idea of attempting to cram an even larger, wider smartphone into my pockets. I'm happy with the size of my iPhone 5s, and not sure if the benefits of a 4.7-inch screen will outweigh the negatives. That said, I didn't think I needed a 4-inch screen, either; I trust that Apple's not moving us to larger and larger devices just to conform with the wants and whims of the general public. (Or to channel the popularity of Zack Morris.)
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