Sunday, January 27, 2013

Images alleged to be next-gen iPhone speaker components arise

Parts for Apple's next-generation iPhones (with an "s") have appeared online. The images were posted Friday on the French blog

The site has a good record of past leaks. It has previously posted legitimate images of parts for unreleased iPhones.

The images aren't particularly interesting for those wanting to see an exterior view of the next-generation iPhones. The images were supposedly snapped by someone employed by the company that manufactured the parts for Apple, and are photos of what the source said are speaker components for two future iPhone models.

That's right, the site says there are two iPhone models coming. That matches up with reports that indicate that nApple will release a new, modern iPhone along with a lower-cost version for emerging markets. calls the two models an iPhone 5S and iPhone 6.

The source told that the first model -- presumably the 5S -- would be released between March and July of this year, with the second model arriving closer to the end of the year.

The target time frame for release of the first device is a wide-ranging five months, which seems strange. It would also seem strange for Apple to release a new iPhone in March, only a few months after the iPhone 5. July would be more reasonable, but is the 5S to be some sort of interim device, like the 4S vs. the 4, with a December launch for a much-changed 6?

Most of the rumors, thus far, have had Apple releasing two iPhones this year, with one being the next-generation iPhone -- changed enough to satisfy iPhone buyers -- and the second one being a lower-cost model for emerging markets, with a cheaper case made of plastic -- and perhaps multiple colors -- and with an unsubsidized price of anywhere between $350 to $450.

Earlier this month, KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo said in an investors note that he felt that Apple would release an iPhone 5S this summer -- minimally changed like the iPhone 4S vs. the 4, along with a lower-cost tweaked iPhone 5, similar to the above description.

The iPhone 5S, Kuo said, would sport only a few improvements, including a faster A7 chip and a fingerprint sensor. Much of the differentiation between the iPhone 5S and Android, therefore, would rely on iOS 7 improvements.

Although these leaked images are of internal components, those wanting exterior images of the next-generation iPhone can look to a similar leak by from early December. The images depicted an exterior that looked identical to the iPhone 5, but an inside view showed differences, including different placement for the screws and some minor changes from the iPhone 5.

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