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New iPhone launch hits sales

Apple expected to surprise markets ahead of Christmas

Image Credit: Prasad Nair/Gulf News
Shoppers walk pass ISTYLE APPLE store as the store at Dubai mall.
Gulf News

Dubai: There are tonnes of rumours about what the new iPhone will look like and what it will be called. Half of the fun of an Apple product launch is speculating what will go into the product as the rumour mill churns out report after report about the latest gadget from US company.

It’s not clear, though, what Apple will even call its new iPhone. The gadget maker has typically numbered its latest offerings, but ditched this nomenclature for the new iPad.

Even the anticipated launch of the iPhone 5 is hitting its iPhone 4S sales hard.

Amidst rampant rumours that Apple’s next iPhone will sport a 4-inch screen, a new report indicates that the next iPod touch will also boast a larger display.

Japanese blog site Macotakara, citing an “Asian source” reported that the fifth-generation iPod touch will also have a 4-inch LCD display, just like the next-gen iPhone. For comparison, the current iPod touch and the iPhone models sport 3.5-inch screens.

“Despite the rumours, Apple will always surprise its fans with something unique offering,” Mohammad Ashique, a electronic trader at Moon Shine Electronics, said.

He said Apple needs to continue to improve the competitive advantages it already has — the way Apple has built its ecosystem is brilliant. They’ve locked so many users into their ecosystem — I think that gives them an enormous advantage.

According to Hamza Saleem, senior research analyst at IDC, Apple Siri needs to be updated as it does not recognise Asian accent.

Its share prices have fallen as iPhone 4S has not changed much compared to iPhone4.

“Apple is expected to launch its new gadget by Christmas and may also be slightly thinner than its predecessors,” Saleem said.

The casing of Apple’s next smartphone could be aluminum, as Apple looks to “abandon the glass backing of the current form-factor. There have been problems with the glass backing scratching, so Apple may look to alleviate that,” Ashique said.

Saleem said Apple needs to come out with a phone that can compete with Samsung Galaxy S3 which is creating waves in the market.

Given Apple’s long-standing relationship with Qualcomm, there is a strong possibility that a Qualcomm chip could be powering the 4G capabilities of the phone. Qualcomm chips feature predominantly throughout the previous versions of iPhones and iPads.

Another major feature which Apple could introduce is “Near-Field Communications”. Apple started to open up the possibility and potential for the iPhone becoming a “digital wallet” when it announced Passbook, as part of iOS 6, its new mobile operating system.

As for the name, well it looks like it will be called iPhone 5. Apple has certainly been trying to protect the name iPhone 5 — and has even launched a claim over the domain name.

Many experts say an August launch is very unlikely. October remains the front-runner for an iPhone 5 release. South Korea’s Maeil Business Newspaper claimed that the head of human resources at Foxconn’s Taiyuan factory said that the company will be launching the iPhone 5 in October.



Expected features

• 4-inch screen

• NFC connectivity

• iOS6 operating system

• New maps and camera features

• 10MP camera

• Quad-core processor

• iCloud and Facebook integration

* Smaller 19-pin dock connector

• iClear Retina display