Following yesterday’s predictions that I made, we now know what Apple will be launching later this month. Were my predictions correct?
New iPhone models
I was pretty-much bang on about the two new iPhones – the cheaper 5C and the premium 5S. There were so many leaks of information that these were expected by many, and so it was a bit of let-down when Apple were unable to surprise us. As predicted there would be a new processor, which was indeed the A7, although the M7 co-processor to manage the motion sensors was a surprise. And as expected the iPhone 5S will ship with a fingerprint scanner on the home button.
The iPhone 5C is, as expected, a cheaper plastic phone, but it’s not significantly cheaper than the iPhone 5 was. Unless Apple will be selling it more cheaply in emerging markets and then pricing it higher in the more lucrative Western markets.
Both handsets will actually come in five versions (so ten in total), with different models for different networks, due to the big variation in frequency bands for 4G LTE. Vodafone is listed in the UK, meaning that the 5S and 5C will work on its 4G network. The iPhone 5 didn’t because Vodafone and O2 will be using the frequency bands that were freed up when analogue terrestrial television broadcasts were turned off last year. Whilst O2 isn’t listed, as the original launch partner for the iPhone in the UK I expect this is an oversight and that they will offer 4G services on the new handsets, and I expect 3 will do as they will offer 4G on the existing iPhone 5 last this year.
Apple have unexpectedly returned to the case market with new cases for both models. There’s also a new docks – one for the 5 and 5S, and one for the 5C.
Retiring of the old models.
Nope. Got this wrong. The iPad 2 and iPhone 4S are still on sale, and even the iPhone 4 will be available in China. Apple did kill off one its phones though, and surprisingly it was the iPhone 5. The 5C and 5S will therefore completely replace it. Normally Apple keep at least the previous two models on sale, although the third-generation iPad with retina display was retired after 8 months so it’s not completely unheard of.
The iPod Classic gets a stay of execution
I fully expected Apple to finally give the iPod Classic the Old Yeller treatment, but it’s still on sale, surprisingly. There were no major changes to the iPod range yesterday (with one exception, see below) and my hope of a 128 GB iPod Touch didn’t become a reality.
As expected, Apple have not added support for NFC to their phones. I agree with Apple that Bluetooth SMART has more potential than NFC.
No Apple TV changes
Sadly there are no changes coming to the Apple TV, despite my hopes. Apple needs to offer more services on the platform if it hopes to be competitive against rivals like Roku, particularly outside of the US.
And everything else
We didn’t get to see the much-rumoured smart watch yesterday. I imagine Apple are working on one but are waiting until they can offer something significantly better than the competition. Samsung released its Galaxy Gear smartwatch to very mixed reviews last week and I’ve heard quite a few people have been underwhelmed by the Pebble smartwatch. Maybe next time.
Apple made a very slight change to the iPod range; the ‘space grey’ colour was added to the existing models. Other than that, there were no changes to the iPod line-up.
After two years, the Cards app for iOS, which allowed you turn your pictures into greetings cards, was discontinued. I don’t know anyone who used this so this isn’t surprising. That being said, I don’t know anyone who uses the ‘Stocks’ app that comes with every iPhone and can’t be deleted, yet it’s still there in iOS 7.