January 21, 2013
Chinese News Agency Claims Apple Will Make A 4.8-inch iPhone Math
Michael Harper for redOrbit.com — Your Universe Online
Few companies can inspire analysts and journalists to write such outlandish nonsense like Apple can. In most cases this nonsense is easily dismissed, such as the persistent rumors that the next iPhone will be transparent and feature a projection style keyboard. Then, there are those stories which are so outlandish, it´s the ridiculousness itself which makes headlines.
In the latest example, The China Times has claimed Apple will this year release a 4.8-inch “phablet” competitor called, get this, the “iPhone Math.”
As translated by BrightWire, this gigantic iPhone will feature the iPhone 4S and 5´s 8-megapixel camera and will arrive this June alongside the expected and completely sane sounding iPhone 5S. Unlike other rumors, this story doesn't mention a word about that cheap, plasticky iPhone the rumor mills continue to churn about.
The China Times report seems to suggest Apple will compete head-on with Samsung this summer, with their huge iPhone before releasing the real, new iPhone just before the 2013 holiday season. The later iPhone model is said to have a 12-megapixel camera. The report also claims Apple is nearing the production phase of these phones, saying shipments of these components will begin in March with production beginning in April.
Yet, for such a ridiculous claim, The China Times' report is oddly specific about which companies will be supplying Apple with components.
“Hon Hai Precision Industry Co. Ltd. will undertake 90% of the manufacturing orders, and Largan has received orders for 8 million camera lenses. Fujikura, Flexium and Zhen Ding will share production orders for printed circuit boards,” reads the report, according to BrightWire´s translation.
The report says Foxconn and Coxon will provide the “molding parts” for these new iPhones, while Hon Hai will design “4G network solutions” for Apple.
Many sites have dismissed the “iPhone Math” name as a simple error in translation. This very well could be, especially considering this title is far beyond Apple´s normal naming convention. Yet, while translation can be blamed for such a horrific name, it can´t be blamed for reporting that Apple is working on a 4.8-inch iPhone.
This isn´t the first time an Apple-branded Note II competitor has arisen in the rumor cycle. Last month, Piper Jeffries analyst Peter Misek said Apple was working on a 4.8-inch prototype with a “Retina-IGZO screen, A7 quad-core processor and a new design sans-home button.
According to MacRumors, Misek said only last week that he hasn´t seen any further references to this prototype. The often-wrong DigiTimes has also claimed Apple was working on a cheaper, larger iPhone for “emerging markets".
There are several reasons why this rumor is plain ridiculous. The iPhone Math name is the most obvious, of course. Secondly, releasing such a phone would mean Apple would have to ask their developers to tweak their applications once more to fit a larger screen, something they did just last year for the iPhone 5.
Next, 2 new iPhones in June and one new phone in 4Q wouldn´t be an accelerated release cycle, it´d be insane. It would reflect a company unsure of their offerings. Such a statement has never been said of Apple in the last 15 years or so.
Finally, releasing new devices with such differences in hardware so close together could cause confusion in the market. Potential iPhone buyers are already accustomed to holding off on their upgrades until the newest release. It´s likely Apple would only stand to lose by releasing three phones within a span of 6 months, angering both customers and developers.
The claim that Apple is working on such a device isn´t all that ground breaking; Companies make prototypes all the time. The claim such a device will be released in June is what makes this rumor so asinine.