by Bill Palmer
So much for the head fake. If Apple was attempting to get would-be iPhone 4 buyers to go ahead and take the plunge by creating the illusion that the iPhone 5 could be delayed, it may have worked in at least some instances – but the gig appears to be up. Here are five reasons why the iPhone 5 looks headed toward a spring – that’s right, spring, not summer – 2011 release. And of course by “spring” we mean early June:
- AT&T just raised early upgrade fees. There’s no reason for the original iPhone carrier to make that move right now unless it expects the iPhone 5 is coming soon and wanted to sneak the fee hike in under the radar before the iPhone 5 makes its debut.
- Apple recently admitted the white iPhone is coming this spring. Common sense says it wasn’t referring to the bizarre notion of releasing a white iPhone 4 so close to the end of the iPhone 4 era. Apple was more likely referring to a white iPhone 5, and “spring” simply means “sometime before June 22nd.”
- WWDC teases a preview of the future of iOS in early June, but doesn’t make clear which version it’s referring to. “The future of iOS 5″ would mean that iOS 5 isn’t coming in June. But “the future of iOS” could mean anything – and as we’ve seen, Apple has been fond of dropping hints with the number “5″ left out so as to create vagueness.
- The Verizon iPhone 4 is selling well but wasn’t the answer in terms of getting the Verizon customer base to stop settling for the Android phones they don’t want. The catch-22 with the late arriving Verizon iPhone 4 all along has been that all but the least informed of Verizon customers have known that the iPhone 5 is an option; all they have to do is wait a bit longer. If Apple was originally leaning toward a later iPhone 5, the non-sparkling results of the Verizon iPhone 4 could well have pushed the company away from the notion. The clock is ticking for a Verizon iPhone 5.
- Look around at both Verizon and AT&T, and it’s clear that 4G isn’t happening any time soon. Verizon has 4G available in about four city blocks nationwide, and that’s impressive compared to AT&T’s imaginary 4G network. If Apple were to wait for the nation’s two largest carriers to get their 4G act together, we might not see it until 2012. At this rate Apple is better off simply doing a non-4G iPhone 5 now and worrying about future 4G networks in the future. And Apple knows that.
And then there’s this from a Beatweek reader:
“I believe Apple will stick to their schedule of releasing iphone 5 in June for one simple reason – they are masters at marketing – and they are well aware of the pains they will have to endure by dampening their momentum. missing or disrupting their very successful cycle could all but end their win streak or at the very least cost them considerably in lost sales and disoriented, disillusioned customers who will be flooded with high end product from the competition who will show no mercy. There is no way Apple would tinker with this model.” Enough said. Here’s more on the iPhone 5.