File this one under the Unlikely category. According to an otherwise pretty credible Japanese blog, citing “reliable Chinese sources”, Apple is working on a brand new mobile device featuring a five-inch Retina display. Specifically, it should have a screen resolution of either 1,600-by-960 pixels or 1,280-by-960 pixels. The gizmo is said to be released some time in 2013.

This sounds a lot like a blown-up iPod touch of sorts, which in its current incarnation incorporates a 3.5-inch Retina display with a 640-by-960 pixel resolution. Apple isn’t the one to follow market trends – it dictates them instead.

That being said, however, surely club Cupertino must have been paying attention to the five million shipment milestone of Samsung’s Galaxy Note phablet…

According to the machine-translated Macotakara article (Google translation):

Apple seems to have a plan of five-inch Retina display device in 2013. According to Chinese reliable source, Apple LCD seems to be developing supplior of 5-inch Retina display. The 5-inch Retina display product has which is expected to be released in 2013, and resolution of this LCD will be 1,600 x 960 pixel (800 x 480 by legacy majour) or 1,280 x 960 pixel (640 x 480).

Maybe it’s that iPad mini we’ve been hearing about or perhaps Apple is developing a brand new product aimed squarely at the portable gaming market. Yes, I’m looking at you, Sony and Nintendo.

Conveniently, that’s where the Foxconn-Sharp deal could prove handy as Apple is thought to be very much interested in Sharp’s Indium Gallium Zinc Oxide (IGZO) display technology.

The benefits of IGZO panels over the traditional LCD screens include sharp colors, lower power consumption and pixel densities of as high as 330ppi – enough to justify the Apple-coined Retina moniker.

IGZO panels don’t need dual LED bars to illuminate the pixels and allow for wide viewing angles, negating the need for a premium display technology called In-Plane Switching.

Not sure about you, but I for change would love to be able to enjoy graphics-intensive games on something akin to an oversized iPod touch.

Is Apple spreading itself thin here? Is a five-inch Retina device atypical of Apple’s otherwise compact product matrix? And while we’re at it, what about platform fragmentation? Meet us in comments.

  • Anonymous

    I could possibly see this in two form. The iPod touch hasn’t seen any major improvements. Samsung had that music player thing with 4 + inch screen. As for a new iPhone i really doubt 5 inch screen. I really think 4 inch retina display is more likely.

  • 2013? Really? Screw waiting – I’m buying iPod Touch 4 now.

  • It’s maybe the iTV remote?

    • What would be the point of that I can already use my iPad and iPhone as an apple tv remote….

      • that mean that those who might buy the tv and dont have an iphone or ipad need to buy one of those too? every tv has a remote…

  • Anonymous

    So we’re going to have the iPhone 4S at 3.5″, the iPad, a rumored 7″ iPad, the rumored 4.6″ iPhone you reported and now a 5″ retina device. Ok, I’ll bite. Not.

    I just want confirmed details on the new iPhone. And LTE is guaranteed. It’s not a maybe or a rumor. It is 100% going to be in the next iPhone (in America lol)

    • I am surprised it took them this long!

  • I do not want anything bigger than a 4 inch screen on an iPhone!

  • hmm if Apple  Bring out a new iphone with a display BIGGER than a 4in, I will deffo be dropping Apple….I mean Cmon I for 1 need a “Phone” in my pocket NOT a Tablet, I got my ipad for that!!
    Just Saying!!

    • Anonymous

      You don’t have your iPad with you as often as you would your iPhone .. so we shouldn’t have to put up with the 3.5″ screens when they can fit at least 4″ in the same chassis with a little rejigging of the home button and space above screen

      And no I want go Android then over the screen, I had that choice with S2 when my IP4 died, chose iOS over bigger screen
      Just saying!!

  • Anonymous

    if new ipod touch look lıke thıs I am okay with it …. but ı am waiting for iphone 5 and ı dont want 5 ınc that is the reason ı dont buy galaxy note because my hand not capable in 5ıch in operate one hand and 4.2 ich is the lımıt ı cant reach to upper side with my hand on nexus 4.6 ich and thıs ıs not usefully on mobile phone at all

    • So you’re saying, you can’t handle 5inchs in your hand?
      Think you’re on the wrong blog mate…

  • That’s an iPod touch

  • I really want the bigger screen in iphone but 5 inch is too much. 4.5 would be perfect.

  • Why does this extremely resemble the iPod touch 4G?

  • Ben

    When the first iPad was being rumored I was hoping it would be two iPod 4g touches melded together making it 1280×960. I imagined it like holding an iPod touch landscape but twice as tall, and Idealy with the border outside the screen greatly reduced and just as thin as an iPod touch as well. In my mind I afectionately refered to it as the ‘iPod touch double-wide’ ha. I can hold a 4g iPod touch landscape all day.. So light with retina goodness.

    Also had some derivative ideas for the double-wide.. Make it square so it didnt matter whatsoever which way you happened to be holding it when you picked it up. Could watch widescreen movies in full resolution and still have screen real estate left over control buttons or a messaging text box below. Messaging dorky friends while watching movies on you phone… I know what people want.

  • Marc Baumann

    I definitely do not believe that. Is Apple becoming a second Samsung or what?? It has always been the goal of apple to focus on just a few products, and thats:

    – the Mac
    – the iPad
    – the iPhone
    – the iPod

    I’m highly doubting that there will be new product categories in the future that are quite similar to the existing ones, and if so, it would be the beginning of Apple’s end. Nevertheless, a iTV seems quite likely to me as it represents a brand new category.

  • I hope that apple continues its trend after Steve’s death… Please apple don’t ruin it all

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  • Apple don’t dictate, they improve . . . sometimes. I’m kind of happy with my iPhone but a little larger screen would be nice, not 5inchs though, not for a phone. Personally I would prefer a 4inch screen on my phone. Maybe they think the Samsung note thing is not a bad idea after all and apple want a part of that too. Seems they have sold quite a lot of them so far.
    Anyway, who knows.

  • It´s not for ipod or iphone unless these products will get squeezed to remain at the actual body size, wich i believe it´s unlikely. I´ll bet that this device is the remote for the iTV. Also i believe that there will be an apps to turn your iphone, ipad and ipod acting as an iTV remote, however not with the same easiness as if they were the iTV remote.