Despite the fact that Apple released the existing iPhone 5 only in September last year and that the company generally takes at least 12 months to launch a new handset, speculations regarding a summer release of the sixth-generation iPhone, presumably dubbed the iPhone 5S, are gaining momentum day by day.
Citing a “trusted source,” Japanese blog Macotakara has reported on Tuesday that Apple is expected to release the iPhone 5S in July with the device availability to follow in August. What is even more interesting in the news is the claim that the next iPhone iteration will come in five color options, including black and white.
The report says that the long-rumored cheaper iPhone will also get the multiple color treatment. However, there are no more details on the matter.
The Cupertino tech giant is widely expected to come up with a low-cost iPhone model in order to compete with cheaper android handsets in developing markets like China and India. KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo recently said the budget iPhone model would have the same design and screen size (4 inches) as the iPhone 5.
When it comes to Macotakara, the blog has a mixed track record in recent years regarding Apple-related leaks. While it correctly predicted the redesign of the seventh-generation iPod Nano and the fifth-generation iPod Touch with the updated 4-inch screen, it also made a wrong prediction of an early April event for a new iPad.
There’s also confusion in terms of the current prediction. A report from AppleInsider has pointed out that the Google translation on the blog’s Web page incorrectly states "three colors added to two colors of iPhone 5,” which suggests that there will be five color options for the iPhone 5S.
According to the report, the actual translation should be: "One new color will be added to the iPhone 5s existing two color options for a total of three colors."
In addition to a variety of color options, the iPhone 5S is also rumored to be made available with “at least” two different screen sizes.
The rumor is based on a research note by Topeka Capital Markets analyst Brian White, in which he said that Apple has realized that one screen size per iPhone release will not work for everyone, while “offering consumers an option has the potential to expand the company's market share.”
Citing officials at an unnamed "tech supply chain company,” White said that Apple is likely to launch its next iPhone models in July with two or possibly even three screen sizes.
“We also walked away with the view that Apple will release the iPhone 5S in at least two screen sizes this summer and possibly three. We continue to target July as the launch date,” White said.
The analyst believes that the upcoming summer launch of the iPhone 5S will also include the release of a low-cost iPhone. However, he suggested that Apple will not offer an iPhone below $300 without contract. That said, White predicted a price tag of $300 to $350 for the cheaper iPhone.
"We believe this price point is reassuring for investors that Apple wants to expand its market reach with consumers in developing countries such as China," said White, who previously suggested a price tag of $250 to $300 for the same device.
According to recent research estimates by KGI Securities, the iPhone 5S will have key features like a faster A7 application processor (28nm), in-cell touch technology, a fingerprint reader and a 4-inch display with a pixel density of 326 ppi. The handset will be 7.6 mm thick and will weigh 112 grams.
Other rumored features of the iPhone 5S include an 8-megapixel (or higher) camera, Near Field Communication, or NFC, technology, an updated iOS version with improved Siri and 128GB storage capacity.