According to the Wall Street Journal, Apple is “developing a new iPhone to debut this summer.” This bit of news isn’t too surprising if you look at Apple’s track record; since the inception of the iPhone, new handsets have been announced each and every summer. But wait–there’s more! Apple is also “working on another model for US mobile phone operator Verizon Wireless.” In other words, the best smartphone is coming to the best network. We’ve heard these rumors before, but hearing it come from the WSJ make it sound that much sweeter.
Some manufacturing details have surfaced as well. According to “people briefed on the matter” and relayed by the WSJ, the “next iPhone is being manufactured by Taiwanese contract manufacturer Hon Hai Precision Industry” (the same company behind all previous iPhones) and the first CDMA iPhone (purported to go to VZW) will be manufactured by Pegatron Technology. Mass production of the CDMA iPhone could start as early as this September.
Engadget was tipped about a June 22 unveiling for the next-gen iPhone, dubbed the iPhone HD. Long-time Apple product seer John Gruber added his latest predictions to the mix. He claims the next-gen iPhone will feature the A4-class system-on-a-chip, a 960×640 display, a front-facing camera, and third-party mulititasking support with iPhone OS 4.0.
To sum up: A new iPhone (possibly the “iPhone HD”) will be announced this summer; said iPhone will boast a high-res display and front facing camera (among other predictions); and a CDMA version of the iPhone is headed to Verizon Wireless, with manufacturing to commence as early as September, ending AT&T’s death grip on what is arguablly the world’s best smartphone. Sounds about right to me. Now it’s time to start the waiting game. Summer isn’t that far away, is it?
Let’s do this, bullet-point style.
- New iPods: It is very likely that new iPod touches and nanos will be announced. This is a “music event,” afterall. Both the touch and the nano will have 3.2MP cameras, and the touch will receive a built-in mic. Also, both devices will receive a storage upgrade, possibly to 64GB or higher. Overall design should remain the same. Due to the recent rumor that claims Apple is having technical difficultieswith the camera mechanisms with the iPod touch there is a chance the product release may not be instantaneous with the announcement. Also, the death of the iPod classic may be imminent.
- iTunes 9: Last we heard about iTunes 9 was a BGR source stirring up the rumor mill with these claims: Blu-Ray support; Facebook, Twitter, last.fm integration; and the ability to organize purchases apps. Blu-Ray support only makes sense if Apple plans on releasing iMacs and Macbooks with Blu-Ray drives. Also on the table is “Project Cocktail.” Sources say that albums sold in the iTunes Store will not only come with digital PDF booklets; they will also come with “interactive album material.” The point of this is to entice customers to purchase entire albums instead of only the 99 cent singles.
- THE BEATLES: According to Yoko Ono herself the entire Beatles collection will finally be digitally distributed on the iTunes Store. EMI, the record company, told The Financial Times that this will not be announced tomorrow, though. [Via Engadget]
- Apple TV: Ah yes, the “hobby” that is the Apple TV. Jobs announced this product three years ago, and not much has changed since its release (besides a UI upgrade via a software upgrade). The latest rumors predict a new Apple TV device that supports DVR and CableCARD functionality. Today, though, these exact rumors were shot down by Apple CFO Peter Oppenheimer. He said such capability does not match Apple’s service scheme. And this makes sense; why would Apple allow its customers to freely record TV shows or movies when they have the iTunes Store for those needs. I do not see an upgrade to the aging Apple TV at this event. [Via Engadget]
- Apple tablet: The tablet will not be announced at this event. The most recent rumors point to a 2010 (or beyond) release.
- Steve Jobs appearance: It has been way too long since we’ve seen Jobs appear on stage at the helm of an Apple event. Now that his health has rebounded and he is back at work on the Apple campus in Cupertino, I expect him to at least make an appearence if not host the event.
Be sure to check back here for all the Apple news once it is announced. It takes place tomorrow at 10AM PDT (1PM ET). Get pumped!