Over the past several months, there has been widespread speculation over the possibility of a fourth-generation iPhone being released this summer. There’s been quite a few stories with rumors regarding things like a Verizon and T-Mobile iPhone, but how much can you read and listen to until it has your head spinning? As it stands right now, there’s no guarantee that a fourth-generation iPhone is even in development right now.
Today, I want to distinguish fact from fiction and share my insights on what you can expect in regards to a new iPhone model, based on research and information I’ve been provided with.
- Multiple Carrier Support – There’s been a lot of discussion about Apple breaking the iPhone’s AT&T exclusiveness and creating an iPhone specifically for Verizon Wireless, T-Mobile, and even Sprint. I haven’t been able to confirm or discuss the carrier aspect of stories with any sources, AT&T or Apple, but it seems likely that a Verizon model is likely, and as usual, GeoHot or other iPhone hackers will find some sort of unlock for whatever is released.
- Hardware and Feature Additions – With the upcoming release of iPhone OS 4 this summer, many people speculate this is why June is the expected release time of a 4th generation iPhone. In addition to coming bundled with the latest firmware improvements and feature updates, the internal hardware is expected to receive some upgrades, too. An LCD screen, improved camera and video, improved battery and a faster processor are just some of the many improvements rumored. A camera update is imminent, as is an improved processor. Many consumers are hoping for a battery improvement, but based on the size of the iPhone, I’ve heard not a whole lot can be done to improve battery life.
- iPhone HD – This is something that has only recently gained the attention of speculators, and it seems to be a fair rumor. The iPhone HD may be the name of the newest iPhone, rather than the iPhone 4G (to avoid confusion that the phone will work on a 4G network AT&T may launch in the future).
- Other Rumors – The rumor mill for a new iPhone is always huge, so it’s difficult to cover everything you hear. One rumor I’ve heard that hasn’t been publicized is that the new iPhone will be factory unlocked, regardless of how you purchase it, though I’m not going to give this one a whole lot of credibility. The June/July release date speculation seems to be the most reliable thus far, and if it is true, the phone will be announced in late May or early June.
- Employee Vacations Blocked – Just yesterday, April 16, Boy Genius Report posted a story in which they confirmed from multiple sources that AT&T would be blocking employee vacations in June, which has only been done previously when a new iPhone model was to be released.
- Previous History – If you’re a statistical sort of person, you’d know that the iPhone 3G was released in June 2008, followed by the release of the 3G S in June 2009. If history is to repeat itself, June 2010 sounds realistic, as does a new date I’ve come across: June 22, 2010, according to a source I just received an email from. History is a fact, but whether or not it’ll repeat itself is never certain or based on fact.
The iPhone 4G is riding the hype train right now, and nobody is expecting anything less than an extraordinary product that will revolutionize the iPhone product line all over again and change our perspective on mobile phones forever.