As we head deeper into 2014, we’re beginning to hear more about what Apple has in store for consumers in 2014. Its plans supposedly include a brand new iPhone, or iPhones, dubbed iPhone 6. With demand increasing by the day, we want to take an updated look at how the rumored iPhone 6 currently matches up with the iPhone 5, Apple’s former flagship, and a device that many consumers will be looking to replace later on this year.
Back in 2012, Apple introduced the iPhone that many consumers had been waiting for. The company’s iPhone 5 replaced the iPhone 4s and it did so with a number of features that had been sitting on consumer wish lists for years. Those features? 4G LTE data speeds and a larger 4-inch display.
At the time, 4G LTE data of course had been a staple of Android smartphones for quite awhile, giving Android devices a distinct advantage over Apple’s offerings. And just about every Android flagship arrived with more screen real estate than the iPhone, a device that Apple kept at 3.5-inches since its debut back in 2007.
In the years since the iPhone 5’s release, iPhone 5 owners have watched as Android smartphones have gotten bigger and better. Devices like the Samsung Galaxy S5, HTC One M8, LG G2 are now out on shelves, tempting iPhone 5 upgraders with an arsenal of high-powered features. iPhone 5 owners should know better than to think that Apple is going to go down without a fight.
Rumors suggest that Apple has a bigger, and better smartphone of its own planned for 2014 and over the past month or so, we’ve started to hear a lot about the company’s alleged plans. The iPhone 6 release may still be months away but there are still enough credible rumors to warrant an early comparison to the iPhone 5.
This comparison aims to help set the expectations of current iPhone 5 owners as we head deeper into the year and closer to Apple’s inevitable iPhone 6 announcement. Here is what iPhone 5 owners need to know about the iPhone 6.
The iPhone 5 was first released back in September of 2012 and remained on shelves up until the arrival of the iPhone 5s last September. In a bit of a surprise, Apple canned the iPhone 5 in favor of a lineup that consists of the iPhone 5s, iPhone 5c and the iPhone 4s. The iPhone 5 is available through third-party routes but the device isn’t easy to find brand new.
This comparison isn’t aimed at those who are thinking about buying a two year old phone. It’s about those who currently own the iPhone 5 and are thinking about upgrading to the iPhone 6 or perhaps, the iPhone 5s. iPhone 5 upgrades would be wise to check out Apple’s iPhone 5s in stores right now, ahead of the iPhone 6 release.
Those looking to physically compare the iPhone 5 to the iPhone 6 are probably going to have to wait a number of months because iPhone 6 rumors virtually all point to a release this fall. As we’ve pointed out, this makes a whole lot of sense given that Apple’s past three iPhones launched in the fall and given that the company tends to stick with a very particular release cycle.
Over the past few months, there have been a great deal of iPhone 6 rumors. The most recent rumor however comes from the CEO of a company that partnered with Apple to sell the iPhone in Russia. Several days ago, he claimed that the iPhone 6 release date would land in September, 2014 without giving a specific date.
This is the second Apple partner to point to the fall iPhone 6 release date and the most direct iPhone 6 release date claim because it comes from a company that has an instrumental role in helping Apple sell the iPhone. Thus far, we have not seen a specific iPhone 6 release date emerge and we probably won’t until we get much closer to the actual date.
His information lines up with all of the recent iPhone 6 release date rumors. Here is a quick recap of the latest reports on the iPhone 6’s upcoming release date:
- iPhone 6 release date as early as September – Nikkei
- iPhone 6 release date in August or September – Steve Milunovich UBS via Barrons
- iPhone 6 release in the fall – Andy Hargreaves at Pacific Crest via Business Insider
- iPhone 6 scheduled for third quarter 2014 – ZDNet Korea
What this means is that iPhone 5 owners who are in need of a new iPhone right now are going to be stuck with Apple’s current lineup or the Android and Windows Phone powered devices that dot the current landscape. Those who are looking into replacing Apple’s iPhone 5 with its new iPhone are going to have to wait.
Back in 2012, DisplayMate called the iPhone 5 display, “the best Smartphone display we have tested to date.” The publication’s claim carried over to the iPhone 5s which sports the same 4-inch Retina Display with 640 x 1136 pixel resolution at 326 pixels-per-inch.
The Retina Display is still a fantastic but according to DisplayMate, the industry voice on mobile display quality, “the Galaxy S5 is the best performing smartphone display that we have ever tested.” Indeed, this year’s display technology has finally caught up to the iPhone 5 and the iPhone 5s.
So it should come as no surprise to hear that Apple is planning to up the ante. iPhone 6 rumors almost universally suggest that the next iPhone will come with a larger display that will compete with the likes of the Samsung Galaxy S5 and best the displays found on the iPhone 5s and the iPhone 5.
Rumors suggest that Apple could introduce two new iPhones at two new sizes. Display rumors point to one model will come with a display that’s between 4.5-inches and 4.8-inches with a majority of rumors pointing to a 4.7-inch display. That device is rumored to have a higher 1920 x 1080 pixel resolution which would put it on par with many of the top Android smartphones.
The iPhone 5 does not offer support for full HD, something that companies like Samsung have mocked.
Rumors also point to a larger 5.5-inch iPhone 6 that would compete against the Samsung Galaxy Note, the device that is seen in the video above. However, it looks like Apple may not release them both at once.
A new report from Reuters claims that Apple is planning a 4.7-inch iPhone 6 release for this fall and that the larger 5.5-inch iPhone 6 may be delayed. In fact, rumors are starting to point to two possible iPhone 6 releases this year.
There is also a ton of chatter about Apple utilizing sapphire for the iPhone 6 display. A Sapphire display would mean a more scratch-resistant display. If true, we could wind up seeing a iPhone 6 that not only comes with a bigger sized, higher-resolution screen but a display with improved battery efficiency and image quality. The iPhone 5’s display would not be able to compete.
If the iPhone 6 does come with a larger display than the iPhone 5, than it will almost certainly come with a footprint that is much larger than Apple’s 4-inch former flagship.
iPhone 6 design rumors remain inconclusive despite several alleged iPhone 6 photo leaks. A recent Macotakara report shared two possible sets of iPhone 6 dimensions for both 4.7-inch and 5+inch models.
With a larger overall size, the device may be thinner while still offering room for components and a larger battery. The rumored iPhone 6 dimensions are listed below, compared to both the iPhone 5s and the iPhone 4s.
- iPhone 4s – 115.5 × 62.1 × 9.3mm
- iPhone 5 – 123.8 x 58.6 x 7.6 mm
- iPhone 5s – 123.8 x 58.6 x 7.6mm
- iPhone 6 (4.7) -140 x 70 x 7mm
- iPhone 6 (5.7) – 160 x 80 x 7mm
Sonny Dickson claims that the iPhone 6 may be as thin as 5.5mm, down from a 7.6mm thick iPhone 5s. This smaller size could come in part from new display technology that reduces the thickness needed for display backlighting, as shared in a report on LEDInside of TrendForce.
Ming-Chi Kuo of KGI Securities, in a note shared by MacRumors, says that he believes that the iPhone 6 will come with a power button on right and narrower bezels. The thinner bezels could potentially lead to an edge-to-edge display, something that we’ve seen pop up in rumors as of late.
Alleged iPhone 6 photos and mockups claim to show the exact look of the upcoming iPhone but thus far, they are conclusive. While they do look a lot like a larger iPhone, they don’t offer any clues in regard to the build material. Apple likely won’t take a step in the opposite direction so iPhone 5 owners can expect a build material that’s on par with the anodized aluminum.
Every year, Apple offers an upgrade to the rear camera on the iPhone. For instance, the iPhone 5s’ camera might be an 8MP iSight camera sensor but it’s much improved over the 8MP camera sensor found on the iPhone 5.
As camera technology improves, consumers continue to demand higher quality cameras, particularly ones that can handle subjects in noisy, poorly lit environments. So, iPhone 5 owners shouldn’t be surprised to hear that rumors are pointing to yet another rear camera upgrade on this year’s iPhone.
A report suggests that Apple will not join the race to push more megapixels in 2014. AppleInsider reports that Apple is planning to focus on “image-enhancing components” based on discussions with people familiar with the matter. So while the iPhone 6 may not have a 16MP camera sensor like the Samsung Galaxy S5, its camera could very well be on par with Samsung’s shooter.
Another rumor suggests that the iPhone 6 will arrive with Optical Image Stabilization, which neither the iPhone 5s nor iPhone 5 have. This is based off supply chain chatter, and if true, would allow users to take better looking photos and videos and enhance low light photography by using a special gyroscope and technology.
Apple swaps out its iPhone camera year-after-year so there is no reason, at this point, to believe that the company will stick with what it has inside of the iPhone 5s. In other words, those hoping for a camera upgrade from the iPhone 5 will almost certainly get one.
Obviously the iPhone 6 is going to come with more than just a new display, design and camera. We’ll likely see Apple perform its yearly hardware maintenance and offer some improvements over the iPhone 5s and iPhone 5. In fact, rumors are already pointing to a number of potential iPhone 6 feature upgrades.
Here, we take a look at how the iPhone 6′s rumored specifications compare to the specifications that are on board Apple’s iPhone 5.
- Apple A8 64-bit processor
- iOS 8
- 4.5-4.8-inch and 5 -5.5-inch Sapphire displays
- 2GB RAM
- 16GB / 32GB/ 64GB / 128GB storage options
- 3.2MP front-facing camera
- 8-10MP rear-facing camera
- 1,800 mAh battery
- 802.11ac WiFi
- Touch ID Fingerprint Sensor
- Apple A6 Processor
- iOS 7.1
- 4-inch Retina Display
- 1GB RAM
- 16GB / 32GB/ 64GB storage options
- 1.2MP front-facing camera
- 8MP rear-facing camera
- 1,440 mAh battery
- 802.11 a, b, g, n WiFi
- Regular Home Button
iOS 7 represented the first major update for the iPhone 5 and that means that there should be two more major updates in store for Apple’s former flagship. The company historically has kept its devices upgraded for three years before kicking them to the curb. What this means is that there is a good chance that the iPhone 5 will get the next iOS update, presumed to be called iOS 8.
Apple recently announced its dates for WWDC 2014. The annual developer conference will be taking place at the beginning of June with the keynote likely taking place on June 2nd. There, the company plans to show off its new versions of OS X and iOS.
Rumors suggest that the iPhone 6 will debut with iOS 8 on board, not surprising given Apple’s propensity to include the latest iOS software on the latest iPhone hardware. New iPhone hardware typically gets the full version of iOS software while older devices will often get a watered down version.
As we inch closer to WWDC, iOS 8 rumors have started to emerge in great numbers. Rumors point to software that not only delivers VoLTE support on the new iPhone 6 and iPhone 5s for this year but they also point to a number of other big time changes to Apple’s mobile operating system.
Mark Gurman at 9to5Mac recently shared many details about the new version of Apple’s iPhone and iPad software. Health and fitness are a major focus and a collection of iOS 8 mock ups show what a Healthbook feature could look like. Other iOS 8 rumors flowing from Gurman and his sources include plans for a better Apple Maps, a standalone iTunes Radio app and more.
There is also talk of a much improved Siri after Techcrunch reported that Apple bought Novauris last year for an undisclosed sum. Yoon Kim, and other voice recognition experts from the company are currently working with Apple.
Apple is also rumored to be including Shazam support inside iOS 8, a feature that would let iPhone users use Siri to detect the song that is playing.
Nothing is set in stone but iPhone 5 owners might want to start saving some extra cash.
Back in November, Chris Caso of Susquehanna Financial Group made a bold prediction. He claimed that the price of the iPhone 6 could jump up as much as $100 from the price of the iPhone 5s. He added that “the potential for the iPhone 6 price point to move higher,” and that “we think Apple could get away with a $50 to $100 premium for a larger screen size iPhone 6.”
Caso was alone for awhile but he isn’t alone anymore. Analysts continue to suggest that the iPhone 6 could see a price hike. Recently, well known Jefferies analyst Peter Misek said that he believes that there is a potential for a $100 price jump. A $100 price jump would put the iPhone 6 at $299.99 on-contract, or, same as the Galaxy Note.
Of course, not everyone agrees. UBS analyst Steve Milunovich recently chimed in to the discussion and says that he thinks Apple could keep the iPhone 6 price static. The company has stuck with $199.99 for years and at this point, talk of a $299.99 price point is just that, talk. It’s still worth keeping in mind as the year moves along.