iPhone mini

What to Expect from Apple in 2013: Rumor Roundup

Unlike like the previous couple of years which were filled with dreams of tear-dropped iPhones, the start of 2013 has been pretty quiet for the normally busy Apple rumor mill. The end of 2012 put an end to some the biggest Apple rumors with the launch of the iPad 4, the iPad mini, and the long awaited iPhone 5. This is also why Wall Street is predicting a slow start to the new year for Apple, and why AAPL is down even after the company recently announced a record $54.5 billion in revenue.

2013 Apple Rumors

Apple CEO Tim Cook promised iOS fans some "amazing new products" in the company's quarterly earnings press release released yesterday. Here's what the rumor mill thinks they will be.

iPhone 5S:

Some analysts are promising a 2013 summer release for the iPhone 5S. Apple isn't expected to make any changes to the iPhone's form factor like it did with the iPhone 5, but purported photos of leaked iPhone 5S parts show minor changes to the aluminum chassis. It is also rumored that Apple will offer the iPhone in an iPod touch-like array of colors, and introduce a Home button fingerprint sensor system.

Will the New iPhone be Made of Plastic?

Apple's rumored low-cost iPhone could feature a "chassis mixed with plastic and metal" instead of the reinforced glass or unibody metal used for the current models, according to a report by the DigiTimes.

Bloomberg and the Wall Street Journal both claim Apple is working on a $99 to $149 “entry-level” iPhone to "attract customers in developing nations". It also believed the more affordable iPhone will be made available in the U.S. sometime this year.

iPhone Rumor

Previous rumors have suggested that the new iPhone will feature components from older models, a 5-inch display and a new exterior design. The possible older components and plastic body would help Apple keep the cost down for the new model.

Apple's Low-Cost iPhone Could Launch Later This Year [Rumor]

It looks like the media will have to pick a new name for Apple's rumored low-cost iPhone, which has been dubbed the "iPhone mini" by some analysts. According to a report by the DigiTimes, Apple is planning to launch a "low-cost version of the iPhone for China and other emerging markets in the second half of 2013". However, sources in the supply chain claim the new iPhone will feature a larger display, instead of being a smaller version of the iPhone 5. If the rumor is true, Apple could use older components, like it did with the iPad mini, to keep the cost down.

Low-Cost iPhone

Some analysts believe Apple needs to release an affordable iPhone to compete with Samsung, who is expected to see a 35% growth over the next 12 months, according to Strategy Analytics.

“We expect Samsung to slightly extend its lead over Apple this year because of its larger multitier product portfolio,” Neil Mawston, executive director at Strategy Analytics, told Reuters.

Brian J. White of Topeka Capital Markets said in a report that he believes Apple will release the iPhone 5S in May or June, but will not release the iPhone mini until next year.

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