Apple is rumored to be working on the next generation iPhone, currently being called the “iPhone 5S”. According to Jeffries analyst Peter Misek, Apple is now testing two prototypes of the next gen iPhone, and will start initial builds in March in order for a early release date in June or July. Since the iPhone 4S, Apple has been releasing iPhones in the Fall, alongside or close to the iPod refresh. Now, with rumors that the Cupertino company is creating a ‘cheaper’ iPhone for emerging markets, Apple is expected to move up the iPhone debut to the June/July timeframe in order to release the new device in the Fall.
Misek claims that the iPhone to be released in June will be only an incremental upgrade, likely internal changes such as a faster A6X chip, and better cameras and that an entirely new design with a larger 4.8” screen will be seen with the next generation iPhone 6. As noted, the cheaper iPhone will likely be a more concentrated device, such as the iPad mini, which isn’t built of cheaper materials, but rather of a smaller size.
As expected, Misek believes that with reports of a “iPhone 5S” on the horizon, sales of the current iPhone 5 would slow, although he also predicts that Apple will sell 44 million iPhones in the March quarter. He also pinpointed some reasons as to why a decrease in iPhone 5 part orders does not necessarily mean a decline in demand for the product.
- An assembly bottleneck that caused component inventories to rise in the holiday quarter.
- Planning for preliminary production of the next iPhone in March.
- Demand may be either in line or “slightly below optimistic expectations
It seems that Apple will likely keep its iPhone line consistent and in line with Misek’s claims. Since the iPhone 3G, the company has always followed with an ‘S’ version, with the letter signifying a new feature. In the iPhone 3GS, it was Speed; the iPhone 4S was Siri, and the 5S will likely signify a newer feature.