And while we’re currently months away from a release, we do have a pretty good idea about how the iPhone 5 launch and release will play out this fall.
Apple is widely expected to be releasing an iPhone 5 with 4G LTE capabilities, a 4-inch display – up from the usual 3.5-inches, a new front-facing camera, a thinner design, and of course, iOS 6. Those features, especially the screen size and 4G LTE data speeds, have drawn lots of interest from consumers, many of whom are likely waiting (painfully) for news about a release.
Update: Catch up on the iPhone 5 in one page.
Again, we don’t have a specific release date to look at just yet. However, we just so happen to have a crystal ball and here is what we expect from the iPhone 5 release date this fall.
September or October Release Date
Now that WWDC 2012 has come and gone without an iPhone 5 announcement, we know that Apple is likely going to be announcing the iPhone 5 and the iPhone 5 release date sometime this fall. When exactly unfortunately remains a complete unknown.
There have been numerous reports pegging the iPhone 5 release date as being in either September or October. A specific date in either month has not yet been rumored.
October seems to be the month that is the front-runner at this point though. Apple, although very secretive, is fairly predictable when it comes to its release cycles.
Previous to last year’s October launch of the iPhone 4S, the company had launched its iPhone during the summer. And now that that cycle has changed, we expect Apple to stick to it.
Keep in mind, Apple announced and released the iPad 2 in March of 2011 and it did the same with the new iPad this year. It’s a creature of habit.
The iPhone 4S launched on October 14th and we fully expect Apple to launch the iPhone 5 on a date close to that.
Release After iOS 6
Apple sticks to a similar release structure with its mobile hardware and software. Last year, Apple announced the iPhone 4S and its release date at its fall event. In addition, it also announced the final version of its iOS 5 software and gave it a release date as well.
The iOS 5 release date came on October 12th, a couple of days before the release of the iPhone 4S, which meant owners of Apple’s previous devices got their hands on the new software a little bit earlier than new iPhone buyers.
We fully expect the same to happen this year with Apple announcing the final version of iOS 6 and its release date alongside the iPhone 5 and then releasing the new software a few days before it releases the new hardware.
Release Date Given at Announcement
Many manufacturers and carriers announce a new smartphone or tablet at a large media event but fail to give it any sort of pricing or a release date. For instance, when Samsung announced the Samsung Galaxy S III in May, it failed to give many consumers a specific release date for the device opting to give a launch month instead.
Believe it or not, this can deter some consumers from buying the device. It also leaves open the possibility that consumers will choose another device between the announcement and the eventual release date.
Fortunately, Apple does not do this and it’s one of the reasons that its media events are so widely watched and covered. It’s also probably a reason why the iPhone sells so well right off the bat.
At the iPhone 5 event, expect Apple to announce an official release date for the next iPhone. Additionally, expect it to tack on pricing as well.
Same Date for Three Major Carriers
Again, Apple is vastly different from many of its competitors when it comes to release dates and pricing for its products. Using the Samsung Galaxy S III as an example again, the device, like the iPhone 5, will be headed to multiple carriers in the United States.
However, the device has different release dates on different carriers. It will be hitting Sprint and T-Mobile on June 21st. AT&T around the same time. And U.S. Cellular and Verizon in July. It’ll also come to C-Spire at some point as well.
Pricing is also bound to be different as well.
With the iPhone 5, we expect to see a release date across the board for its major carriers which should include AT&T, Sprint and Verizon. We also should see the same pricing at all three carriers as well.
Barring a surprise, we expect the iPhone 5 to start at the usual $199.99 and then progressively get more expensive when the internal storage space is increased.
Last but not least, we expect the iPhone 5 release date to be chaotic. Earlier this year, when the new iPad launched, it took many consumers many hours to lock down an order for the device. Apple’s site was finicky and it buckled under the amount of interest in the iPad.
That happened to the iPad, just imagine what’s going to happen with the iPhone, especially if it sports 4G LTE and a bigger screen.
Last year, AT&T’s website crumbled under the load of the iPhone 4S and Verizon’s site was slow as well. We expect the same, if not worse when the iPhone 5 arrives.
That being said, those interested in the new iPhone 5 should expect the release date to be a stressful one filled with sites crashing, extremely slow order processing, and loss of hair.