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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

Network World - The holiday preparations took their toll on the iOSphere this week, as rumorers, distracted by ordering and buying the latest Apple products, cut back on their speculative output about future ones.

There are new and still completely unjustified rumors that Apple plans to release the next iPhone, which will be either iPhone 6 or iPhone 5S, in the January-March time frame. Also this week: a news report that an interim model, the 5C, with pre-shattered touchscreens, will be released before the iPhone 6; and dual-LED, dual-color flash for iPhone 6.

You read it here second.

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

"Peter," at GSMArena, posting about an anonymous tip and providing this week's most compelling iOS rumor assessment criteria: its credibility is directly proportional to its oddness.

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iPhone 6 will be released Q1 2013

International Digital Times asserts that the Next iPhone will be released in the January-March 2013 time frame because of a "report" released by independent analyst Horace Dediu, founder of Asymco.

The post is headlined "iPhone 6 Release Date 2013: First Quarter Launch For New Apple Smartphone [REPORT]." As is often the case, the text of the post is somewhat different. Dediu "has released a report stating that starting in 2013 Apple will release a new generation of each device (iPhones and iPads) every six months, as opposed to the one year product cycle we've seen since the first iPhone debuted in 2007."

And what's more, "Dediu's report is based on an official statement from former Apple CEO John Sculley."

IDT is pretty dismissive of Sculley. "We're not sure how credible Sculley, who left Apple back in 1993, is when it comes to the electronics company's current inner workings."

But. "However, we've been predicting that Apple will speed up its product cycle for weeks."

The confusion in and with this post is emblematic of iOSphere rumors. First, Sculley didn't make an "official statement." The TUAW website interviewed him and he answered some question. He gave his opinion.

Secondly, Dediu didn't "release a report." He composed on his blog, as is his wont, a reflective, informed speculation, triggered by the Sculley opinion, about what he frankly called "circumstantial evidence" that Apple may be moving to a semi-annual product release cycle; and the scale and impact of such a change. His full post, "Does S stand for Spring," is here

The last bit of evidence he considered: "Rumors of 5S products in pre-production. This is the least valuable piece of evidence but it might indicate that the 'S' variant is targeting spring launch." That puts a different perspective on the "we've been predicting that Apple will speed up its product cycle for weeks" claim by IDT.

One of the issues Dediu doesn't touch on is what impact a twice-a-year iPhone introduction would have on Apple's pricing, not so much for the newest iPhone but for the one or more preceding models, and on the length of each model's life cycle.

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