The world has been waiting for the iPhone 5 for over a year now (as it was expected instead of the iPhone 4S), and it has already become one of the most hotly anticipated gadgets of all time. It has been predicted that the iPhone 5 will sell well over 250 million units and will very easily knock the Samsung Galaxy S3 from its position of most pre-ordered gadget of all time.
In fact, some retailers in China have already started accepting pre-orders for this phone – a phone that has not even been announced yet.
The official unveiling is due to take place on September 12th at an event where Apple is expected to also release a smaller iPad. Based on previous iPhone launches, Apple is also expected to start selling the iPhone 5 during the following week, most likely Friday 21st September.
But what is known of the phone so far? Are these Chinese retailers jumping the gun?
The iPhone 5 could potentially be a complete flop; but of course, we all know this will not be the case. Even if the phone turns out to be a huge disappointment it will still sell by the millions – there is no indication that the iPhone craze is dying off any time soon.
In many peoples’ eyes the iPhone 4S was a disappointment due to its lack of redesign, but it still went on to become the biggest selling iPhone of all time.
One thing we do know is that, unlike the iPhone 4S, the iPhone 5 will feature a new design. Physically it is speculated that it will look quite similar to the iPhone 4S, but it will be noticeably taller due to a larger 4 inch screen. This rumor has been backed up by numerous leaked images, leaked components and reliable tips to reputable news outlets and tech blogs.
Tech blog 9to5Mac recently confirmed that Apple has specifically tweaked iOS 6 to work with an increase 640 x 1136 resolution, 176 pixels taller than the iPhone 4S. Forcing iOS to run at this resolution resulted in an extra row of app icons appearing in iOS 6 but not in iOS 5, and this effect was experienced only at this precise resolution. Apple could have only added support for this resolution for one reason, and that is if it intends to use it on an upcoming device.
The iPhone 5 will also come with a new dock connector that will either have 19 pins, 9 pins, or 8 pins depending on your source, but will be much smaller than the current 30 pin design. This will result in some accessories becoming obsolete but will also allow Apple to place the headphone socket on the bottom of the iPhone for the first time.
According to leaked internal components appearing this week, the iPhone 5 will also be the first phone to make use of the new ETSI approved Nano SIM card design. Nano SIM’s are 40% smaller than the Micro SIM cards used in the iPhone 4 and 4S. Nano SIM has only just been accepted as an industry standard by ETSI (European Telecommunications Standards Institute) which is one of the main organizations to determine industry standards between phone manufacturers.
Due to this being a recent decision by ETSI it was assumed that Nano SIM would not make it to the iPhone 5, but the recent leaks suggest otherwise.
iOS Updates & Facebook:
On the software side of things, Apple will introduce Passbook so that people can store coupons and travel tickets on their iPhone, as well as new Maps app that includes a 3D flyover mode. Siri will also see improvements and it will now be possible to use Face Time over 3G and, if it is present, LTE.
Facebook will also be integrated with iOS, allowing users to like content in iTunes and the App Store, share things with Facebook friends directly from the phone, and easily update their Facebook status from the iPhone’s notification center.
Although it will most likely share a lot of design principles with the iPhone 4 and 4S this will be the first iPhone for over two years to come with a distinctive appearance. The larger screen is something that many iPhone users have been demanding for a few years now and the Facebook integration will make the iPhone 5 the best phone with which to use the popular social network.
The iPhone 5 will be unveiled on September 12th when all of the details regarding the phone will become clear. However, at present even the name is not certain as it has been suggested that the phone could be called the iPhone 6, new iPhone or even the iPhone SJ in memory of the late Steve Jobs. Whatever Apple ends up calling the phone, as long as it includes the word “iPhone” it is guaranteed to be phenomenally successful.
Simon writes for Best Mobile Contracts, a leading mobile comparison website in the UK and the best place to compare iPhone 5 deals when the phone is released next month.