According to Jeffries analyst Peter Misek, Cupertino could roll out the iPhone 5S in June, bringing the launch forward by a few months. The iPhone 5 was released in September, so it will have a somewhat shorter shelf life than expected. Misek believes the iPhone 5S will feature an improved screen, camera and battery, along with NFC and a 128GB storage option. In addition, the iPhone 5S could appear in multiple colour options.
What’s more, Misek believes there is a good chance Apple will also introduce a cheaper iPhone for emerging markets and consumers who prefer going prepaid. The cheaper version should be based on a retooled iPhone 4, with a scaled down modem and processor. The iPhone 4/4S still has an eye catching design and if Apple manages to cut component costs it could have what it takes to take on cheap Android handsets.
However, if this all sounds familiar, it is because we’ve been hearing rumours of a cheaper iPhone for years. Sadly, the baby iPhone never materialized. Of course, a cheaper iPhone would cannibalize the 5S, but then again it could increase Apple’s unit market share, at somewhat lower prices.
In the past we were a bit more skeptical when it comes to prepaid iPhone rumours. However, this time we need to factor in the iPad mini into the equation. If Apple could successfully introduce a cheaper iPad with an unimpressive spec, what’s to stop it from taking the same approach with the iPhone?