Device operating systems

Here Comes the iPhone 5 (Rumors)

iPhone 5 rumors have run rampant as Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL) prepares to release the next version of its iconic handset this fall.

Verizon Wireless CEO Lowell McAdam is among those who expect the phone to drop in the fall months, something Apple COO Tim Cook all but confirmed on Apple's third-quarter earnings call. When asked about the quarter ahead, he referenced "a future product transition that [we] won't talk about," more than likely meaning the iPhone 5. (See Verizon CEO: We Expect iPhone 5 in the Fall and Apple iPhone: The Gateway Smartphone.)

They say
If you believe Boy Genius Report's "exclusive sources," the launch date for the smartphone will be in early September, with an official announcement occurring at the end of August. The tech blog reports that AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) is encouraging stores to wrap up employee training in time for the launch. MacRumors adds fuel to the fire, alleging that Apple is looking to hire more part-time staffers in the U.S. in time for the September launch. The site claims Apple is reaching out to former employees and asking them to come back as part-time workers Aug. 15 to Sept. 15 for the "holidays, new product launches and back to school time." September 5 is pegged as the exact launch date by Italian phone site Spin Blog.

The employee ramp-up will be necessary, too, if you believe the recent PriceGrabber survey findings that 35 percent of U.S. consumers will buy the iPhone 5. Of those, 51 percent said they'd get it within one year of coming out, and 7 percent plan to wait in line to get it the first week.

Some other iPhone 5 gossip and guesses making the media rounds include that:

  • Apple is testing voice control for the phone
  • Apple's iOS 5 operating system update will include facial recognition technology, so the iPhone 5 can identify faces through the phone's camera
  • AT&T employees are busy testing out iPhone 5 Betas Apple supplied them with earlier this month

We say
Analysts at our sister company UBM TechInsights believe the iPhone 5 will lack Long Term Evolution (LTE), but feature a lighter, thinner design, Qualcomm Inc. (Nasdaq: QCOM) baseband chip, Broadcom Corp. (Nasdaq: BRCM) component and an 8-megapixel camera. (See What'll Be Inside iPhone 5?)

Read more of our musings below.

— Sarah Reedy, Senior Reporter, Light Reading Mobile

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