Last year, Apple managed to sell roughly 30 million iPhones in the last quarter alone. Since it launched the iPhone 4S, it has sold about 20 million units of the handset, making it one of the best sellers in the history of smartphones. The next iPhone, dubbed iPhone 5, is expected to be even more popular. Analysts forecast that Apple will sell about 50 million iPhone 5 units in 2012 and 2013.

Now that the new iPad is out, anticipation is starting to build up for the iPhone 5. The rumor mill churns endlessly with speculations, expectations and hopes for the new device. Here's what we've heard so far:

New Design

So far, all five generations of iPhones have a very similar design, and people demand a change. The new iPhone is expected to come with a new form factor, rumored to be a teardrop design. Apple used this design element in the stylish MacBook Air notebook, and it could inspire a similar design for the iPhone.

Larger Screen

There have been numerous rumors and speculations regarding the screen size of the new iPhone. Everybody expects a larger screen, and rumors go from a 3.7-inch to a 4.6-inch display. When it comes to resolution, Apple is expected to offer the Retina display resolution, one of the best types of display on the smartphone market. In addition, some rumors indicate the new display may feature Corning Gorilla Glass 2.

Quad-Core Processor

As Samsung seems to be preparing for a Galaxy S3 launch with a quad-core processor, Apple is expected to keep pace and pack a quad-core processor in the new iPhone. The iPhone 5 is expected to have at least 1GB of RAM, with some rumors even indicating 2GB of RAM. There are speculations regarding a quad-core graphics processor as well.

LTE Connectivity

Apple has not yet confirmed that the new iPhone will be 4G-ready, but people are starting to get pretty sure of it. iDownloadBlog, for instance, feel 99.999% sure that the new iPhone will feature 4G capability. The new iPad already features LTE support, and Apple is expected to include the same technology in the new iPhone as well.

Release Date

Apple enthusiasts expected the iPhone 5 back in October, but instead they got the slightly improved iPhone 4S. Now, Apple has just released the next-generation iPad, so there will likely be a few months of cooling off before releasing the iPhone 5. Judging by Apple's previous launch schedules, the new iPhone could be making its debut in October. On the other hand, other rumors point to a June launch.

(reported by Alexandra Burlacu, edited by Surojit Chatterjee)

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