How many of you are waiting for the iPhone 5 to come out before you purchase a new phone, raise your hands. Keep your hands up if you are hoping that the iPhone 5 launches in September or October and no later than that. I doubt a single hand went down.
There has been a lot of speculation in regards to the next iPhone’s launch date. The latest pegs September 30th as the date pre-orders will begin and October 7th as the launch date. Those dates are purely speculation at this point. Apple has told us nothing other than the fact that iOS 5 will be launching at some point this fall.
Nothing is set in stone though and as my colleague Josh Smith points out, while reports indicate that Apple will launch the iPhone 5 this year, it doesn’t necessarily mean it has to. I disagree and think that Apple absolutely has to launch a new iPhone in October and here is why.
Already Missed June
I can’t even imagine how many people Apple disappointed when it failed to announce a new iPhone at the World Wide Developers Conference in June. I tried to warn people but there were just some that refused to believe that Apple would break from tradition and focus on software and iCloud. Now, that was fine. September was tossed into the hat before WWDC and I think some people were able to prepare for a June without an iPhone.
They were fine with waiting until September. Or, as it stands now, October.
However, if Apple somehow misses this rumored October release date, tons of people are going to become fed up with waiting and spring for other phones. And believe me, there are a lot of enticing options not called iPhone. Apple loves pleasing its customers and it already let them down once.
iOS 5 Needs New Hardware
Apple’s new software, iOS 5, is going to have some serious competition when it arrives. Not only will there be a ton of new Android phones on the market – some with 4G LTE capabilities – Microsoft will have its new software out, Windows Phone Mango, and there will be hardware coming out with it. One of those highly anticipated hardware releases will be from Nokia.
Nokia makes great hardware and paired with Mango, you can understand why Microsoft is becoming worthy of consideration this holiday season.
Ice Cream Sandwich, Google’s latest Android operating system, will likely launch this fall and could do so alongside a new Nexus device that could very well launch in time for the holidays. If it doesn’t, it will launch shortly afterward.
Apple needs to do the same thing with iOS 5. Launch a new software chapter with new hardware. It would be foolish not to.
Too Much Risk
Plain and simple, there are just too many amazing phones coming out for Apple to risk losing out on millions of contracts by pushing a release date beyond October. I can’t see Apple just sitting back and allowing Google and Microsoft and RIM to clean up this holiday season. The phones coming out are very tempting for some people, even Apple fans.
Nokia’s Windows Phone, the HTC Vigor, Motorola Droid Bionic, Samsung Galaxy S II, the new Nexus, and AT&T’s first LTE smartphone just to name a few. Apple would be crazy not to have a new phone out to compete with all of these devices.
Apple Likes Money
Bottom line, Apple will sell a ton of next-gen iPhone’s with or without 4G LTE capabilities. However, it won’t sell as many if it misses this rumored launch date. Disappointment and tons of competition will see to that.
Apple makes a lot of money and like most businesses, it wants to make as much of it as possible. If Apple keeps pushing this launch back, it doesn’t make as much money and it doesn’t sell as many iPhones. Believe me, Apple has every intention of smashing its own profit/sales records and it will need the holiday season to accomplish that.
And a new iPhone in 2011 on AT&T and Verizon and possibly on other carriers as well will ensure that that happens.