If there’s one thing we used to be able to count on with the iPhone, it was that Apple was going to release a new model every Summer. Indeed, this has been Apple’s mo since the first iPhone was released in 2007. But the iPhone 5, by all accounts, will be the exception to the rule.
Word that the iPhone 5 release date had been pushed back first surfaced in late March when the well-connected Jim Darlymple stated that WWDC 2011 will be a software only event, with no new hardware to speak of. The rumor was subsequently given more weight following sources in the Chinese supply chain who indicated that Apple, as of 2 weeks ago, had not yet begun ordering iPhone 5 components. Further, these sources relayed that the iPhone 5 wasn’t scheduled to launch until late September or early October at the earliest.
Now a new report from Avian Securities is claiming the same thing, only with a later release date. Citing conversations with key component suppliers, an analyst report from Avian Securities claims that iPhone 5 production won’t even begin until September and that Apple’s next-gen iPhone wont hit the market until the end of 2011 and perhaps not until early 2012.
“In addition,” the report goes on to state, “our conversations also indicate the existence of a lower-spec/lower-priced iPhone in Apple’s roadmap. However, while our contacts have seen the placeholder in the Apple roadmap, they do not yet have insight into specs or production timing.” Indeed, there have been reports that Apple is working on a lower cost iPhone with perhaps a lot less storage. While some have hinted at a smaller screen, don’t expect Apple to ship any iOS device with a screen smaller than 3.5 inches.
While it’s always hard to gauge the accuracy of these speculative release dates, the ongoing disasters in Japan has had an effect on key component suppliers relied upon by Apple. Just two weeks ago came word via Sony CEO Howard Stringer that shipments of 8 megapixel camera sensors for the iPhone 5 were delayed due to damage sustained at one of Sony’s Japanese factories.
If, in fact, the iPhone 5 won’t see the light of day until late 2011, the effect on Apple’s bottom line may be profound. Apple typically enjoys a wildly successful Summer launch that continues to ramp up and build up momentum up to and through the always important holiday shopping season. If the iPhone 5 is delayed until 2012, Apple will certainly be able to recover, but the delay will undoubtedly have an affect on the number of iPhones analysts expect Apple to sell over the course of the next few months.
Release dates aside, one of the more intriguing features rumored to come with the iPhone 5 is a larger 4-inch edge-to-edge screen.
via Business Insider