So far we know that the 6th generation iPhone will be launched in the fall, in September or October. We’re betting on October, based on last year’s launch of the iPhone 4S in the same month, and the likelihood that Apple will want to mark Steve Jobs’ anniversary with an important launch event.
Components and design changes
Based on the little unofficial information, we know that the iPhone 5 is expected to have a larger screen, measuring 4.08 inch, but we don’t think that Cupertino will make such a sudden transition between the current 3.5 inch display on the iphone 4S to a 4 inch screen. There has been speculation that the handset could have a 3.8 inch display.
Bloomberg claims that the future iPhone featuring a larger screen, a new design and 4G LTE connectivity was developed under the supervision of Steve Jobs.
U.S. analysts also expect the iPhone 5 to be 20% thinner than the current model. Korean site ETNews.com claims Apple will build an iPhone 5 with a “liquid metal” casing.
Although there has been speculation that Apple will drop the iPhone Home button in the future device, leaks have reportedly surfaced on the net and some claim that it would be a slight change from the current model. Of course, there is also the likelihood that this component could be for another device, but we’ll see.
Other specs include a resolution of 1136×640 pixels, a 16:9 screen ratio, 8 MP sensor with a larger aperture of f/2.2, a quad-core processor and a front camera with HD resolution, which would be repositioned over the loudspeaker.
Besides these, the next iPhone could sport a unibody casing and a thickness of 7.9 mm.
Another rumor surrounding the iPhone 5 claims that Apple has contracted Sony to produce new in-cell screens.
David Pogue the New York Times says that next iPhone will have a larger screen and a modified design as Apple would like to implement a higher capacity battery.
New A5 chip
9to5Mac claims that Apple will use a new version of the A5 chip in the iPhone 5, and that the handset it will have a S5L8950X processor and a SGX543RC graphics chip.
What is important about the name of the chip is that it shows the development of a new processor, different from the S5L8940X used in the iPhone 4S and the S5L8945X, but that does not mean it’s a quad-core.
The device that these information were obtained from had 1 GB RAM, just like the iPad 3, and ran a version of the iOS 6.
A prototype of the iPhone 5, which Apple is reportedly testing now, is running a processor codenamed ARM S5L8950X, which is produced by Samsung and we’re talking about a new generation of processors that probably hasn’t been featured in any device.
The iPad 2 and iPhone 4S have the ARM S5L8940X series processors, the iPad 3 has an ARM S5L8945X series processor, but with the iPhone 5 we should see the processor that many were expecting to power the iPad 3.
But why is the code of the new processor so important? Well because it shows us that Apple could finally launch the A6 chip that is rumored to be quad-core.
The first A4 chip Apple released was codenamed ARM S5L8930X, the A5 chip is codenamed ARM S5L8940X, the A5X chip in the iPad 3 is codenamed ARM S5L8945X and the chip codenamed ARM S5L8950X should be the A6.
Inside Apple, the chip for the next iPhone is known by the codename A5-xxx and by this name the company is trying to keep the silence on the real name of the future processor.
Currently there are no concrete data that would suggest that the future iPhone SoC will be called A6, but even if they will call it that way, it doesn’t mean it will be quad-core, as many assume.
Right now, launching a SoC that is similar to the current A5 seems certain, but only if it’s built using an efficient manufacturing process that could generate a significant increase in battery life. Of course, Apple can decide to increase the frequency of the CPU that runs the iPhone.
The iPhone 5 is also rumored to feature a new Broadcom chip that manages energy more efficiently and would allow the use of Wi-Fi Direct.
NFC integration and 4G LTE connectivity
The prototypes of the new device that is currently being tested by Apple have integrated NFC chips. 9to5mac have managed to obtain a log with information about the iPhone 5 hardware and have concluded that the device will feature such NFC technology.
So far Apple has refused to include this technology in its devices, but the launch of the iOS 6 application Passbook offers a new perspective of the integration of NFC in future iPhones.
A U.S. analyst claims that Apple’s next flagship device will work both on 3G networks and the upcoming 4G LTE network.
Another rumor suggests that the iPhone 5 will have a 19-pin dock connector.
There are also rumors that the new iPhone will sport a 4G LTE chip similar to the one on the iPad 3 and Qualcomm is expected to produce this component for the future device.
The New iPhone?
In March, Apple’s decision to name the iPad 3 only the “new iPad “was very much talked about as it was a change that many did not understand, but that fits with Apple’s tradition.
As for the name, in the D10conference, Tim Cook said that Apple changes the products side names only if they feature certain important functions, or if there is a radical change of design.
This is the idea behind the naming of the iPhone 4S and iPod Mini / Nano.
During the same interview, Cook said that when a product is extremely popular, the company drops the inclusion of secondary names and this is how they renamed the iPad tablet or the Macs. Basically, Apple believes that the product name itself is very strong and a secondary name is pointless, unless it brings really important functions or major design changes.
Given what the Apple head has said, the next iPhone is expected to be simply called the New iPhone.
Of course, everything we presented here is a long chain of rumors. Some will certainly be confirmed, but we will find out which will prove correct in the fall when Apple is expected to release the next generation iPhone.