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iPhone 6 rumor rollup for the week ending Dec. 21

Hopes for spring, pre-shattered touchscreens, cool duals

By , Network World
December 20, 2012 05:29 PM ET
iPhone 6

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iPhone 6 will be preceded by iPhone 5C

The 5C is being targeted at college-age women, who have a greater than average penchant for breaking their iPhones. To address this problem, the 5C will come in several pre-shattered touchscreen options, all of which make it nearly impossible to use. Yet it relieves iPhone owners of breakage angst.

Trust the parody site The Onion to track down the really interesting rumors. 

iPhone 6 will have dual-LED, dual-color flash

Then, there's the almost-as-entertaining unintentional self-parodies.

iOSphere Rumor Rule 17 (RR17) says that if a rumor doesn't pan out, then wait, tweak, and recycle: eventually you're bound to be right.

"We received an anonymous tip," begins the post at GSMArena, by "Peter." He provides this week's most compelling iOS rumor assessment criteria: Its credibility is directly proportional to its oddness.

"The rumor came with no evidence (certainly no photos) but it's seemingly too odd to be made up," he writes.

The tipster, let's give him the codename OddJobs, says "that the next Apple smartphone (whether it's the iPhone 6 or 5S) will have a dual-LED flash...."

But there's more. It will be "unlike any other dual-LED flash we've seen before," Peter declares. "It's going to have LEDs of two different colors."

Think of it. Two LEDs. And two different colors. There will be a "regular LED" which is, you know, just regular. And one "with a slight blue tint." And why you ask? "The idea behind this is to improve white balance when snapping photos," Peter assures us, authoritatively.

Wow! Or more precisely, "Wow, again!"

Dual LEDs for what became the iPhone 5 were widely rumored throughout 2011. Hence the "wait" part of RR17. But these LEDs will be differently colored, hence the "tweak" of RR17. All that's left is to ignore Google's search history and recycle.

"We're not quite sure how this is supposed to work - use both LEDs at the same time to produce a brighter, slightly blue illumination, or light them up one at a time to get two different illuminations in an HDR-type strategy (instead of combining two exposures to get better dynamic range, combine two photos with different color to get better color accuracy)," Peter confesses.

It's a puzzle. That's often the case with rumors, especially those falling under RR17.

Some smartphones today use two LEDs for their camera flash. According to a 2011 forum posting at StackExchange's Photography community, "a dual LED flash can emit twice as much light as a single LED, which means you can [light] subjects 1.4 times further away. It also draws twice as much power."

One forum member linked to a 2008 post by Steve Litchfield at, comparing LED, dual-LED, and Xenon flashes in camera phones. He posted three photos of the same interior scene (a drumset) shot using the three different flash techniques. The dual-LED is indeed much brighter, with fewer and less intense dark areas. The Xenon flash is brighter still but also yields much more true-to-life colors compared to dual-LED.

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