Samsung's next flagship may have appeared in benchmarks
The newest version of Samsung's Galaxy S line of flagship devices may well have appeared in online benchmark tests. Fone Arena on Wednesday pointed to new results from GFXBench, showing an as-yet-unannounced Samsung device with the model number SM-G900S. If the device shown off were to prove to be Samsung's next flagship handset, it would signal a huge push on the part of the manufacturer to differentiate its gadgets, as the handset in the benchmarks appears to sport a 2K resolution screen.
Repeated reports may be an 'echo chamber' effect, or mirror actual trials
Rumors and other unconfirmed reports about Apple products -- particularly those that are only in an experimental prototype or testing phase -- are difficult to sort out. Readers who see similar reports on multiple sites or in various print and online outlets have a tendency to believe them after a while, even if the reports are just echoing each other. New reports have emerged recently from different sources claiming that Apple is at least probing the idea of larger iPad and iPhone models, but a healthy dose of skepticism is often required.
Integrated chip increase likely indicates iOS device ramp-up
Sometimes-accurate Taiwanese trade journal DigiTimes is reporting that Apple has recently doubled integrated chip component orders compared to the prior quarter, according to sources within its supply chain partners. If true, the move is not unexpected and would indicate that the ramp-up for production of the next iPhone and iPad models will begin shortly, aiming for an already-expected fall release. The site also reports on a rumor that Apple is talking to LG and AU Optronics about high-end 4K "Ultra HD" display panels.
Improved GPU, IGZO display, more RAM, NFC, new camera, more
A leak of alleged "iPhone 5S" photos posted to Sina Weibo (China's Twitter-like social service), if true, would confirm much of what has already been guessed about the upcoming next iPhone model, which is widely thought to be a significant but incremental update of the iPhone 5. The specs, supposedly leaked from sources in the Chinese supply chain, add little to other reports except for the claim of a near-field communication (NFC) antenna in the body of the device and that it will use a lower-power IGZO display to aid battery life.
Manufacturing ramp would put next iPad model in September
A report in the Taiwanese trade paper DigiTimes -- which has a mixed track record of accuracy -- claims that Apple will begin large-scale production of the fifth-generation iPad in July, with a possible launch in September. The new model is said to be significantly thinner than the previous full-size model, which was unveiled last September. The report also claims the unit will be a third lighter than the current model.
Unconfirmed Japanese sales form claims 13MP camera, iOS 7
An allegedly authentic sales sheet from a Japanese telecom purports to confirm that Apple's next iPhone will be called the 5S, and will begin preorders on June 20 with a formal launch sometime in July. The new phone is said from the document to also include iOS 7 and include a 13-megapixel rear camera. The timing appears to contradict statements by Apple CEO Tim Cook that new products would not be seen until at least the fall, but his carefully-chosen words leave room for some interpretation.
Previe of Ive-redesigned iOS, low-cost model possible
A new rumor from Japan echoes previous speculation that the next iPhone -- presumably the "iPhone 5S" -- may be formally announced at a special event on Thursday, June 20. MacFan, currently celebrating its 20th anniversary as a Mac enthusiast site, claims that the new model will go on sale in July, a few weeks after its introduction. According to the report, a "low-cost" version of the iPhone aimed at the larger larger pre-paid market in developing countries such as China and India may debut in August.
Host of new hardware features predicted, China model too
New speculation by KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has a new flagship iPhone "5S" model arriving in early summer, alongside a redesigned version often referred to as a "low cost" iPhone because it will be more affordable in instalment payments than the current price of a new iPhone model, and made of cheaper materials. The new iPhone models, he says, will also be compatible with China's TD-DLTE and TD-SCDMA networks, be offered by China Mobile, and will offer a host of new features -- reiterating his earlier predictions.
Report claims touch-enabled Chromebook going on sale by year's end
Google could be releasing a touchscreen version of its Chromebook before the end of the year, according to rumors. The report from the Wall Street Journal claims that the search giant is working with an unnamed hardware manufacturer to build the notebooks, which if true would directly compete with existing Chromebook offerings from Samsung and Acer.
Initial order said to be 5M units
Amazon has reportedly chosen Foxconn to produce the online retailer's rumored self-branded smartphone. Unnamed sources have told Taiwan Economic News the contract manufacturer "actively scrambled" to establish the exclusive supply deal, as some of its other clients—Nokia in particular—struggle to gain traction in the smartphone market.
Could boost stock price and avoid cap-gains increases
Based on the moves by several other companies including Costco -- or perhaps a bit of wishful thinking by shareholders -- Apple may be contemplating a special one-off dividend to help avoid any potential investor unrest in light of likely increases in the capital gains tax rate. Further reducing the company's enormous cash pile, which is growing faster than Apple can spend it on dividends or stock buybacks, might accomplish a hat trick of saving shareholders money, reducing its own tax liabilities and boosting its own share price.
Wi-Fi only models to top out at $529
When Apple unveils the iPad mini next week, it may be priced at a premium above the 7-inch tablets it is meant to compete against. News outlets are citing unnamed sources that say pricing for the smaller iPad will start at a minimum of $329, though information on the device's capabilities is as yet unavailable. These reports have the new smaller iPad topping out at $659, with the high-end models having the highest storage capacity as well as cellular connectivity.
Cases allegedly show up at Australian store
Corroborating recent rumors, several iPad mini cases have allegedly arrived ahead of schedule at a retailer in Australia. Although case leaks from small companies are typically dubious, Product Feedback claims to have received iPad mini cases produced and packaged by Cygnett, a relatively large company in the accessory business, rather than a prototype built by a startup.
Smaller iPad may be stalled until October
Although Apple has been rumored to be planning a single launch event for the next-generation iPhone and a smaller iPad, some believe the company may spread the announcements across two separate events. The idea was initially proposed by blogger John Gruber and then reposted by The Loop's Jim Dalrymple, both of whom have a history of accurate reports surrounding upcoming Apple products.
Front camera may be upgraded to HD-quality
KGI securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo predicts that Apple will make significant improvements to both the front and rear cameras on the next iPhone release. These advances are forced by the rumored decreased thickness of the device, and the desire to take full advantage of the alleged new 16:9 Retina Display the next iPhone may sport.
If true, would be one of four 2012 Canadian stores
Canada may get as many as four new Apple stores in 2012, but if reports from Nova Scotia are true, however, one store may go against Apple's trend of placing stores in the highest population centers and will instead land in Halifax, the provincial capital but home to only 400,000 people. The rumor, which has circulated in various forms for years, is recently supported by unusual renovations and unusual secrecy from the main mall in town, iPhoneinCanada claims.
Current iPad 2 would become 'consumer' iPad
Reviving rumors from last month that Apple was set to create a second tier of iPad with doubled resolution, HD cameras, a higher price tag and "pro" apps, analyst Ashok Kumar at Rodman & Renshaw has told his investors that he expects the "premium" iPad model to debut this quarter, claiming supply chain sources.
Bonus opportunity good for one month only
Apple may be looking to quickly expand its iCloud division if a recent rumor, reported by 9to5Mac and other outlets, turns out to be true. The company is allegedly offering existing employees a $10,000 bonus for each new candidate they put forth to the iCloud group that is hired. The prize is said to be only good for the next month, indicating that Apple wants the new hires on board quickly.
Prototype rumored to cost $10,000
Gawker Media founder Nick Denton has confirmed that Gizmodo procured an alleged iPhone HD prototype through a payment to the source, according to several Twitter posts. Although the publishing chief has yet to disclose how much the blog paid for to get its hands on the pre-release device, MobileCrunch points to rumors suggesting the price was set at $10,000.
Device expected to be shared by family members
Although a variety of reports suggest the rumored Apple tablet will offer digital versions of newspapers and magazines, sources familiar with the matter have told the Wall Street Journal that the company is also targeting classrooms and the gaming market. Apple is said to be exploring electronic-textbook technology, hoping that its device will beat the Kindle by offering advanced interactivity and superior presentation.
Tech utilizes positions and movement of full hand
Amid the growing rumors surrounding an Apple tablet, a patent has surfaced that involves hand gestures on a touchscreen much larger than the iPhone display. The technology, labeled as "Contact Tracking and Identification Module for Touch Sensing," appears to be an extension of the current Multi-Touch system, but integrates elements from two hands instead of several fingers.
Apple TV announcement at Sept event? Not quite yet
Despite analyst speculation that Apple might be preparing to launch an update to its Apple TV device at the upcoming media event, sources familiar with the matter claim the company will not diverge from its focus on music-oriented products. The "very reliable" sources told The Loop that Apple TV will definitely not be included in the announcements.
Snow Leopard Golden Master
The recent Mac OS X Snow Leopard build, 10A432, has allegedly reached the Golden Master stage, according to the French site Mac4Ever. Several "knowledgeable sources" claim the latest version seeded to developers is the final copy and ready for mass production on DVDs.
Sprint delay Instinct Mini
A new, previously unseen handset, the Samsung Instinct Mini, is coming to wireless provider Sprint, BGR says in a new leak. Little is known about the new phone, other than that it will be sold alongside current Instinct models and will be available in two colors: copper or graphite. The phone will only support EVDO Rev 0 data networks, however, and is due for a release at the carrier on April 19th. More information about the new phone is expected soon, and may surface as early as next week at Mobile World Congress in Spain.
Yahoo CEO to resign?
Yahoo's top executive, CEO Jerry Yang, could resign to avoid a forced departure ahead of a decisive shareholders meeting on August 1st, according to new rumors. Yang and one of Yahoo's most influential shareholders, Gordy Crawford, butted heads at a recent meeting, sources say, with the latter and his top analysts questioning Yang's arguments and demanding an update on Yahoo's near-term strategy. Crawford has expressed interest in Carl Icahn's proxy takeover for Yahoo, which would likely lead to Microsoft taking over the company.
T-Mobile Unlimited Plan
T-Mobile has announced an unlimited cellular plan to compete with similar offerings by AT&T and Verizon, both of which have already unveiled similar plans. The $100 monthly plan brings T-Mobile up to speed by offering its customers unlimited calling in the US, including roaming and long distance. Unlike the rival plans, the newest addition also includes text messaging without requiring an extension. T-Mobile offers the plan to customers for most of its phones as of Thursday.
Linkin Park secret concert
Linkin Park and Apple are putting together a "secret" concert in New York City, according to band member Mike Shinoda. He writes on his blog that the band had recently won its second German Echo award, and is preparing to play a sold-out show in Madison Square Gardens, before briefly mentioning the "secret" project. According to AppleInsider, this could potentially coincide with a highly rumored Apple event, but is unlikely, since Apple has not sent out invitations.
Akamai, Apple rumor false
Akamai, the company in charge on most of Apple’s content delivery for iTunes and most of its online services, was falsely reported to being dumped by the company, in favor of a switch to Google. Seeking Alpha writes that Swiss American subsidiary Credit Suisse, despite the fact that they are not Akamai’s financial representatives, was blamed for initiated the rumor. Swiss American later denied that they gave any information regarding Apple’s supposed plans, even though technologist Dan Rayburn received the update from several different analysts.
Apple, Jay-z record label?
Rumors had circulated that rap star Jay-Z and Apple would together launch a record label, but a new report from the Boy Genius Report "just about" confirms a deal. Citing a "high-up" source attached to Jay-Z, the deal is said be a go. Jay-Z is allegedly happy with the business model and wants to go ahead with the plan. The implications of Apple forging its own music label would likely send tension thundering through the already-tenuous relationships between the Cupertino-based company and its music label partners selling tracks via the iTunes Store.
Sprint Pulls LG Rumor
Sprint has pulled its LG Rumor messaging phone from shelves due to sheer demand and not technical flaws, the company announced on Wednesday. The carrier has acknowledged a problem with the slider phone which allowed users to accidentally wipe the phone's firmware clear through a debugging code but says it is an isolated incident; most models have not been affected and have already received a fix, Sprint says.