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iPhone 5 rumor rollup for the week ending April 20

Blame Qualcomm, liquidmetal bounces back, most awesomest phone among iPhone 5 rumor highlights

By , Network World
April 20, 2012 03:42 PM ET
iPhone rumors

Network World - The iOSsphere quivered with anxiety about rumored iPhone 5 delays due to chips and quivered with pleasure at the mere thought of the wondrous liquidmetal.

Other rippling rumors this week: the greatest smartphone launch in smartphone history lies ahead of us; you'll have a choice of screen sizes; and Sprint's LTE build-out shows the iPhone will arrive in June.

You read it here second.

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"There is no doubt that there is a demand for a bigger iPhone 5, both from users of the iPhone who are jealous of many Android smartphones with 4 to 4.3-inch screen size and those who would merely be pleased to have a larger screen size. Because of this, Apple needs to supply an iPhone 5 XL." 
    Delaon, PlanetInsane,com, on how Apple's iPhone 5 design goals are driven by Android jealousy

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iPhone 5 will be announced in October due to chip supply problems

That's the view of Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster, as reported in a Bloomberg story this week. 

Bloomberg pulled the information from Munster's latest investors note, where he says the October date is likely, and that the phone will have a new body design and run on LTE networks. According to Bloomberg, Munster had earlier expected iPhone 5 to be released in August 2012.

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He's changed his mind because, he says, chipmaker Qualcomm disclosed "it is having trouble meeting demand for components that the analyst expects to be included in a new iPhone," according to Bloomberg.

The components in question apparently are Qualcomm's LTE/3G radio chipsets, but that's not completely clear from the Bloomberg account. Bloomberg reports that Munster "said in the note that Qualcomm's radio chips that allow for faster connection to the Internet will be included in the next-generation iPhone."

Qualcomm executives in this week's earnings call with analysts said that the company's growth in the current fiscal quarter "could be limited by a shortfall in supplies of chips based on a new manufacturing process" used by its main Taiwan chip foundry, according to The Wall Street Journal, though the Journal didn't clarify if "chips" referred to a specific product, such as the latest Snapdragon CPU or the LTE product, or to a range of products that might be using the new smaller 28-nanometer production process.

But the BBC reported that Qualcomm was definitely talking about the Snapdragon S4 CPU: The company had underestimated demand for the processor and its main manufacturer would not be able to supply enough chips to meet demand until near the end of 2012.

But if that's where the supply crimp is, it won't affect iPhone 5, because Apple uses CPUs built to its own design.

ReboundingRumor: iPhone 5 will have "liquidmetal" housing

Tech blogs and websites are recirculating a rumor that's been around since August 2010, when Apple paid more than $10 million to license a jazzy new technology from a startup, LiquidMetal Technologies. The alloy, dubbed "liquidmetal," would soon be used to create awesome new cases for MacBooks, iPhones, and just about anything else bearing an Apple logo.

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