New iPhone Expected To Be Unveiled At Oct. 4 Media Event
Apple is expected to unveil iPhone 5 at its Cupertino, California headquarters during an upcoming press event.
The event, scheduled for October 4 @ 10 a.m. PDT (7 a.m. EDT), was first tipped off last week by All Things Digital’s John Paczkowski, who reported that newly appointed CEO Tim Cook would be hosting the iPhone 5 announcement after he took over after Steve Jobs’ departure in August.
“Let’s talk iPhone,” was what invitees read in the invitation sent out to reporters, analysts and bloggers yesterday. The short message was composed of a graphic showing several app icons and directions to the event. But because Apple is usually reserved about what it reveals on the topics of its short notice events, the iPhone reference was out of character for the tech giant.
After ongoing speculation about the arrival of the iPhone 5, it appears the device will finally hit retail stores in mid-October. The reasoning behind such a prediction is that Apple released the iPad2 nine days after its announcement and last year’s iPhone 4 was released less than 3 weeks after the announcement.
Some new reports have confirmed that AT&T is expecting a possible release, after it decided to block its staff from going on leave between October 3 and October 14. And Sprint, which has offered an unlimited data plan on iPhone 5 when it comes out, has also reportedly blocked its retail employees from going on vacation in the first two weeks in October. Apple has also reportedly blocked its employees from taking leave.
Analysts cannot seem to agree on whether Apple will launch two iPhone models or not. Some reports claim the new iPhone will be very similar to iPhone 4, but others expect a wholly refreshed phone with a larger screen and a thinner profile.
“We believe a refreshed iPhone 5 will boast enough physical improvements to drive another strong adoption cycle,” UBS analyst Maynard Um wrote in a note.
IPhone 5 is expected to have a teardrop design making it slimmer and lighter than previous versions. It will be powered by Qualcomm microchips and a dual-core A5 processor. It will run on Apple’s newest operating system, iOS5, and is expected to feature iCloud service for its iTunes. The iPhone 5 is also expected to support between 16/32/64 gigabytes of internal storage.
But Ezra Gottheil, an analyst with Technology Business Research, had low expectations for the new phone.
“Frankly, I’m running low on new things they can do to the iPhone,” Gottheil told Gregg Keizer of Comptuer World. “Maybe a slightly wider screen, and the usual thinner, lighter, faster that they always talk about.”
“They clearly want to make the specs better, but there’s not a lot of room for technological breakthroughs,” said Gottheil.
The October 4 announcement of the iPhone 5 will make the first Apple smartphone unveiled since co-founder Steve Jobs resigned from his CEO position in August, reportedly for health reasons.
It is doubtful Apple will bring Jobs onto the stage for next week‘s announcement, noted Gottheil.
“I have a sense that they don’t want to perpetuate the ‘Will he show or won’t he?’ talk,” said Gottheil, of Jobs’ appearance. “Although they may invite him back from time to time, his health permitting, I don’t think they’ll [invite] him for this first event under the new regime.”
It is likely that fresh Apple CEO Cook will lead the presentation next week, Gottheil said.
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