Today is the big day, one that Apple fans and one that those disenchanted with other operating systems and hardware have been waiting for since Apple failed to announce a new iPhone at WWDC 2011. Today of course is the day that Apple is going to ‘talk iPhone‘ at its campus in Cupertino, revealing what we think will be at least one new iPhone device.
And, as Apple events usually go, there are tons of rumors swirling around this event. Some think that Apple will pull a couple of rabbits out of the hat during the event. Will it be a Facebook iPad app? Will Steve Jobs take the stage in some sort of guest appearance?
Let’s take a look at five of the most intriguing iPhone 5 event rumors.
1. Mark Zuckerberg Takes The Stage to Announce Facebook iPad App
One of the biggest rumors swirling about this event is about the announcement of a long awaited Facebook iPad application. Mark Zuckerberg and Co. failed to announce the software at the company’s F8 conference so the latest rumor pegs Apple’s event as the place where Zuckerberg or one of his minions will finally debut the app.
What is the likelihood of this happening? We’d say about 50/50.
We know that Facebook has been working on an iPad application for several months now but it has faced a bunch of delays, which got so bad, that the Facebook iPad app engineer responsible for the application left Facebook a short time ago.
It would also be a little strange to see Apple share the stage with a competitor like Facebook, but you never know.
2. Facebook Integration With iOS 5
Last week we saw photos of what appeared to be some sort of mockup of Facebook integration (yeah, we see the typos) within iOS 5. Consider us a little skeptical on this one, especially because there was no announcement at WWDC.
We have also heard that Facebook was originally going to be integrated into the software before Apple chose Twitter, possibly because of bad blood over the Ping feature in iTunes.
But if true, iOS 5 would have integration of two of the biggest social media platforms in the world and that would be delightful.
3. Two iPhones
We’ve been over this ad nausea, so here is a little recap. Tim Cook might be announcing one iPhone or two new iPhones. Not three. And most likely not zero. One iPhone is either going to be the iPhone 5 or iPhone 4S which will be the new iPhone. It might feature a redesign, or it might be similar to the iPhone 4.
I think we can all agree that it will have some upgrades either way.
The second iPhone is rumored to either be an 8GB iPhone 4 or an iPhone 4 with some improvements. The staff here at GBM is torn over what Apple will announce, so we imagine that most of you out there that just read about this stuff are too.
4. Exclusive Sprint iPhone?
Yesterday, a curious rumor broke about an exclusive Sprint iPhone 5 that would be hitting shelves with 4G WiMax support. The rumor came after the WSJ reported that Sprint had put all of its eggs in one hat in order to get the iPhone, shelling out $20 billion for 30 million iPhones over the next four years. This is what the supposed Sprint iPhone 5 entails:
- Faster CPU.
- Larger 4-inch screen, similar to LG’s NOVA display but with a higher resolution.
- 1GB of RAM.
- Slightly larger design overall, but thinner and with a larger battery.
- 32GB of storage.
- iPhone 5 exclusive software and APIs (Assistant).
- Dedicated Assistant button, possibly integrated with the new home button, “think gestures or a two-stage button like a camera shutter key).
AT&T and Verizon would miss out on the iPhone 5 in this scenario and would launch 4G LTE iPhone 5′s in 2012.
Yeah, we just don’t see this happening.
Especially since the WSJ quoted “people familiar with the matter” this morning in dispelling the WiMax/LTE rumor. You never know though, you just never know.
5. 4G iPhone
We think WiMax 4G and 4G LTE are out the window but there is a rumor out there, backed up with some fairly credible evidence, that suggests that Apple might be releasing an iPhone with HSPA+ support.
That would mean that AT&T (and probably T-Mobile as well) would have a distinct advantage over both Sprint and Verizon who don’t have an HSPA+ network in place.
While I personally don’t see that happening, I think Apple sticks with 3G today, a few of my cohorts believe that Apple really has no choice but to release an iPhone with 4G.
It’s what the company’s customers are looking for, even if it’s HSPA+, and Apple is seen as having to keep pace with Android devices like the Motorola Droid Bionic and others.