Apple’s “Let’s Talk iPhone” event is happening tomorrow. It’s been 14 months since the iPhone 4 launch, and we’ve all been itching to hear what Apple has planned next for its incredible smartphone.
The iDB team has given last minute predictions and thoughts about tomorrow’s event. Will there be an iPhone 4S, iPhone 5, or both? What about iOS 5’s top secret “Assistant” feature? Will Steve Jobs grace the stage for “One more thing?”
Check inside for our individual thoughts and predictions on all of these topics and more…
iPhone 4S, iPhone 5, or both?
In the past, I’ve always had a pretty good idea of what Apple was up to, but this year, I have to admit that I’ve never felt so clueless. Will there be an iPhone 4S, an iPhone 5? Both?
Rumors and speculations have really gone both ways, so instead of making “predictions” per say, I’m going to tell you what would make sense to me.
iOS 5 is such a big deal for Apple this year that I can’t imagine the company releasing the software for just a beefed up iPhone 4S. If they want to make a big impact, they have to come up with a different design, too. But it doesn’t have to be radically different. For example, I can easily imagine the iPhone 5 being a slightly redesigned iPhone 4, with maybe rounder shapes, and an aluminum back. This way, Apple would satisfy iPhone customers expectations while saving large amounts of money on design and manufacturing.
I don’t believe in the rumor of a downgraded iPhone 4. While I do believe Apple could address the prepaid market better, I doubt they will do so with a tuned-down version of the iPhone 4.
Both; all three, actually. Apple claims the status of the most successful company ever at guarding its secrets, and releases three new iPhones: the Cheaper iPhone 4 ($49), the iPhone 4S ($149), and the iPhone 5 ($249).
This year is so different that it’s really hard to say. Based on rumors and logic, I think that the next iPhone will be called the 4S. The iPhone 4 will be revamped and relaunched as a cheaper device that replaces the 3GS with only 8GB of onboard storage. There has been absolutely no hard evidence for a completely redesigned iPhone 5, though I know that’s what a lot of people are wanting.
The iPhone 4 is still considered the most successful smartphone in the world, and Apple can ride the product’s coattails until at least 2012.
As much as I’d like to think that Apple spent the last 15 months building an all-knew smartphone, I have to say it seems unlikely. Given the evidence we’ve seen over the last week or so, I am only expecting to see 1 new handset — the iPhone 4S. Apple will also announce a retooled iPhone 4, with an 8GB hard drive, that it will sell for less than $100.
I’m afraid I can’t see this announcement being anything more than an iPhone 4S. The rumours seem to support that option more the closer we get to announcement time. The iPhone 4S will no doubt feature increased speed and an improved camera, but I was certainly hoping for something completely new.
I think there is going to be only one iPhone this year. I was expecting two iPhones this year, but the rumor mill says otherwise. I believe that the next generation iPhone will have an A5 processor, 1GB of RAM, and the same design as the current iPhone 4 (CDMA). We were hoping to see a 4″ screen, but that’s probably not going to happen. I also believe that Assistant (Apple’s voice-to-text implementation) will be exclusively for the iPhone 4S. You should be able to say certain commands, and the phone will do so.
Lastly, I think that the iPhone will be available on more carriers. With that happening, you could see a dual GSM + CDMA phone. The phone will also be unlocked, and run on T-Mobile’s 3G network and Sprint’s 3G network.
iOS 5 and iCloud
Over the past few years, I’ve always been more excited about the hardware than the software, but this year is different. I think iOS 5 is a game changer, especially with Twitter integration (possibly Facebook, too), iMessage, and Notification Center.
These upgrades brought to iOS are also going to be a great opportunity for jailbreak devs to come up with even more exciting tweaks – that is, assuming Apple doesn’t hire all the iOS hackers out there before we can get a functioning jailbreak for iOS 5, of course.
For some reason, I can’t get excited about iCloud. I understand it’s a huge deal for Apple and that many users will find it a very useful feature. It just doesn’t do it for me. Maybe because I’m old school and I like my stuff to be with me at all time, not somewhere between two servers.
Both launching a few days before the new iPhones are released. Not much new revealed, except the new Assistant feature.
I really think that tomorrow’s event will be all about software. 2011 has been a year for the iPad 2 and Apple software in general. Apple focused on software at WWDC, and I think the same will be done tomorrow.
The main draw of the iPhone 4S will be iOS 5’s “Assistant” feature. The 4S will run Apple’s A5 chip, and Assistant will require the A5 to run. That means that the iPhone 4 and 3GS are left out in the cold. People will see 4S users talking to their iPhones (making appoints, sending texts, finding directions, etc.) and say, “Wow. I really want that.”
iCloud will be made available to the public alongside iOS 5. iCloud will change the way that Apple users operate and sync data on a daily basis. It’s all gonna be grand.
iOS 5 and its new Assistant feature will be the star of the show. From what we’ve been hearing over the last few weeks, Assistant is the reason behind the iPhone’s major delay. So expect it to be mind-blowing.
I have a sneaky suspicion that Apple might have something new up its sleeve when it comes to iCloud. Increased syncing perhaps, and I’m desperate for the syncing that we already know will be present.
It’s almost a given at this point that we will see some kind of voice recognition software come to iOS 5, and I expect a GM of the software to be made available during the event, with the full release coming alongside the hardware.
I believe that Apple will shed more light on iCloud. Apple showed us some of the most basic features of iCloud, and I’m expecting more. iCloud should also get a release date, which will probably be the same day as the iOS 5 launch.
Now, onto iOS 5. iOS 5’s main features have already been shown, but there are probably going to be more exclusive features for the iPhone 4S. One of those is Assistant. I believe that Assistant will be advertised as a feature of iCloud, and the iPhone 4S. I think that some Assistant features are: Twitter integration, Wolfram Alpha integration, and the other Siri commands. Thanks to jailbreaking, Assistant will also probably be ported to other devices. I’m also hoping that Assistant will allow me to send text messages from anywhere in iOS. One of the great features of BiteSMS is quick compose, which Apple could do in Assistant.
One more thing…
The big question is: will Steve Jobs be announcing the iPhone 5? That would be an amazing surprise of course, but again, I don’t think this is going to happen. Steve Jobs is retired. It’s official, and even though he remains an Apple employee and Board member, I’d be surprised to see him on stage.
One thing I’m dying to see is apps for Apple TV. I like my Apple TV, but it’s very limited in what it can do, even with a jailbreak. Adding apps to the Apple TV would probably allow Apple to get a little more settled in your living room. This is a predictable evolution for the Apple TV. It’s not a matter of what, it’s a matter of when. Hopefully, tomorrow will be the day we see apps for the Apple TV.
iPhone 5. It just wouldn’t be right for Apple to release iOS 5 without the new hardware to go along with. The entire keynote audience yells in excitement, and tech blogs everywhere go crazy… Tim Cook takes over as CEO of Apple in legendary style.
This is where it gets fun to speculate. Would I love to see Steve Jobs come onstage for “one more thing” tomorrow? Absolutely. Will it happen? Probably not.
I do think we’ll see updated iPod touch hardware and possibility a new Nano. But that’s probably all from the iPod department.
That being said, I still think there’s room for a surprise at the end of the event, although I have absolutely no clue what it could be. The iPhone 5 (again, probably not), a TV/movie subscription service, an Apple branded TV set? The possibilities are endless.
Will we see a one more thing? I doubt it. Given the fact that the event is being held in Apple’s on-campus auditorium, I’m not expecting any big surprises. As John Gruber pointed out in the recent 5by5 podcast, the venue selection says it all. Apple’s auditorium doesn’t seat near as many press members as, say, the Moscone Center (where WWDC was held.)
That being said, I hope I’m wrong. I had major hopes for this Fall’s iPhone event, and my fingers are still crossed that Apple has a few tricks up its sleeve.
I’m really not sure what this could be. Speculation about an Apple branded TV won’t go away, though I’m far from convinced that is on the cards.
Who knows, maybe the ‘one more thing’ approach will leave with Steve Jobs?
I’m hoping that the “one more thing” will be important. I think that it will be the new iPod touch. Apple always surprises us, and this might be it. It also makes sense for Apple to release a new iPod touch. The upcoming Christmas Shopping season and the fact that a hot item among teenagers and kids is the iPod touch just adds up. If Apple were to come out with a new iPod touch that has an A5 processor and better cameras, people would buy it. One of the biggest complaints about the iPod touch is the cameras. If Apple could improve on that, more people would buy for sure.
I also think that the iPod touch will come in a white option. Parts for the screen have already leaked and it was shown that it will come in that option. This also makes sense because Apple offers white as an option for the iPhone 4 and the iPad 2.
I also think that Apple is going to talk about sales figures, maybe some updates to current software, and of course iTunes 11!
Now that we’ve given you our opinions, what are your predictions for tomorrow’s event?