What Will iPhone 5 Offer?
The tech world is abuzz with rumors about Apple’s upcoming iPhone 5, most likely the next in its famous line of smartphones. The exact release date and specs of the iPhone 5 are still not certain, but a number of persistent rumors point to some highly probable details of the much anticipated device.
A New Look?
Until recently, the closest anyone outside of Apple could get to knowing the appearance and form of the iPhone 5 was through countless mockups by designers with no connection to Apple, faint rumors, and other near-fantasy. However, Apple may have recently revealed the iPhone 5’s new look on accident.
The beta of their new Photo Stream program shows an icon of an iPhone-like device, but there is no precedent for its details. It has a rounded rectangular Home button, in contrast to the circular button seen on all previous iOS devices. This button has been vertically truncated to compensate for the new screen size; the screen stretches to cover nearly the entire front surface of the device, with the camera and speaker pushed up to the very top to compensate. Mockups created with this icon as a blueprint indicate that the body of the iPhone 5 is smaller than the iPhone 4, but that the screen is larger, perhaps 4 inches.
Still the Best Screen with Maybe the Best Camera
Even though it has a larger screen, the iPhone 5 is unlikely to have a higher screen resolution than the iPhone 4. The iPhone 4’s infamous 960×640 “Retina” screen is still unparalleled among smartphones in terms of dots per inch, and even if this resolution is spread out from 3.5 inches to 4 inches it will still rank among the densest displays in the touchscreen smartphone world. Another popular rumor is that the iPhone 5 will improve on the iPhone 4’s 4-megapixel camera, doubling its resolution to 8 megapixels, which is the latest standard for high-end smartphones.
Worldwide Compatibility but No LTE
The iPhone 5 is almost guaranteed to be a “world phone,” capable of receiving calls from both CDMA and GSM networks. Verizon’s CFO has hinted at this dual network functionality. Also, a popular app developer who logs use of his apps has reported detecting iOS devices sporting two distinct sets of mobile network codes (MNC) / mobile country codes (MCC) for Verizon and AT&T. The iPhone’s ability to receive signals from the two most popular network styles will make traveling around the world while receiving calls with an iPhone much easier. However, there is no indication that the iPhone 5 will support LTE, and therefore will not have the potential connection speed of 4G devices.
Just as the iPhone 4 inherited the original iPad’s single-core A4 processor, it is likely the iPhone 5 will contain the iPad 2’s dual-core A5 processor. Older apps won’t directly take advantage of the dual-core, although they won’t be so easily hamstrung by background tasks. Benefits will be most noticeable for new apps that feature both complex rendering and complex processing, like games and media production apps.
SIM Only plans may be available for the iPhone 5. AT&T, the iPhone’s longest-standing carrier in the United States, has been offering these plans for several years. This will allow users with existing SIM Only plans to trade up to the iPhone 5 on their own terms, or to easily replace the iPhone 5 with an even more advanced phone sometime in the future. Such plans also tend to have cheaper rates and are not bound by contracts.
The iPhone 5 is heavily rumored for a mid-October release. This will coincide with Sprint’s adoption of iPhones and the finished production of ad agency TBWAChiatDay’s iPhone apps.
Blake Sanders is a tech writer at broadband comparison site Broadband Expert where he specializes in writing on mobile broadband, sim only plans, and the latest in internet service provider news and information.
Note: Photo courtesy of dpolicarpo via FlickR Creative Commons.