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iPhone 6: what we know, what we don't know, what we'd like to see

Macworld Staff | July 29, 2014
Apple hasn't officially announced the next version of the iPhone, but that hasn't stopped the rumor mill from going crazy over it. Here are the facts, the rumors, and some reasoned guesses about what it'll be like.

Moren: With every tick-tock of the iPhone clock, Apple seems to roll out an ever more powerful processor. The purchase of PA Semi all those years ago has seemed to pay hefty dividends for Apple, allowing them to bring their trademark marriage of hardware and software down to an ever more fundamental level than ever before. There's no reason to think that the company won't roll out a new chip this year (they're not about to stop where they were). Following the company's patterns, it's not a stretch to conclude that such a chip will probably be dubbed the A8. Though if the company does decide to roll out a 6s and 6c, expect the low-end model to perhaps have a more modest A7X.

The storage crunch
Frakes: With recent iPad models, Apple has offered versions with 128GB of storage for those who need--and can afford--it. I tend to be a digital packrat, storing lots of video, music, photos, and apps on my iOS devices, so I bought a 128GB iPad mini last year. I haven't regretted it for an instant, despite the price premium. Alas, the largest iPhone 5s I could buy can hold only 64GB of data. While some readers might scoff at the idea that this is limiting, I've frequently had to spend time removing apps and media from my phone so I wouldn't run out of space.

In other words, while not everyone needs 128GB of storage, for those of us who do, a 128GB iPhone would be just as welcome as one with a bigger screen, faster processor, or better camera. (I should also note that it's a shame that the low-end models, of both the iPhone and iPad, still come with only 16GB of storage. A few videos, or a few hefty apps, and you've already cut your available storage in half. I can't tell you how many times I've heard a friend or family member say, "I thought 16GB would be enough, but I wish I'd bought 32GB.)

Caldwell: I'm with you, Dan. Flash storage gets cheaper and cheaper every year, but Apple's kept its base $199 model at 16GB for the last three years. Even with iOS 8's upcoming iCloud Drive feature, we still need to store a ton of apps and other data on our iPhones. It's 2014: Let's axe the 16GB model and start at 32GB, Apple.

Moren: The problem with flash storage is that it's not substantially cheaper than it used to be--at least in terms of what Apple's paying for it, anyway. I'd tend to agree that 32GB is a great starting point, but plenty of people are still paying for the 16GB models, and Apple's almost certainly making better money on that than they are on the 32GB and 64GB models. While a 128GB model would be plenty welcome for some, like Mr. Frakes, I don't know if we're there quite yet. But I also wouldn't be entirely shocked to see the company expand its line of offerings to a fourth storage size, as it's already done on the iPad and iPod touch.


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