The inside scoop: what happened to the iPhone 5?

Since CNET posted the iPhone 5 story this weekend…

…the iPhone 5 is a “complete redesign. This is a very large project that Steve dedicated all of his time to. He was not that involved in the 4S because his time was limited.”

…we thought it would be a good time to tell you what our sources think happened to the iPhone 5 that some were expecting. We’ve heard from Foxconn managers as well as Apple employees and carrier partners on this and have tried to piece together the full story.

The iPhone 4S as you see it was originally planned to be released at WWDC with iOS 5, like every iPhone before it.

But something happened around February of this year that threw everything off. Apple was still integrating the Siri team and code into iOS and it was going much slower than planned. In February, Apple knew they weren’t going to be able to get an iOS 5 Beta to developers in April and they sure weren’t going to have a stable version by WWDC. They would be lucky to get a final version of Siri into customers’ hands by the holiday shopping season (Siri is currently in Beta in three languages).

At the same time, Apple’s iPhone 5 (teardrop) plans were moving along on or ahead of schedule and the first prototypes were testing well. CNET says that Steve Jobs was overseeing this project which sounds about right.

With mid-October being the earliest possible date of a Siri-fied iOS being ready – with “Apple-levels” of polish –Apple had to look at its options. Would they release the iPhone 4S at WWDC with a modified version of iOS 4? Without Siri and the other iOS 5 improvements, the update might have seemed a little bland to the average customer.

Instead Apple chose a different route.

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800MHz iPhone 4S browser powers past the 1.5GHz Samsung Galaxy S II

Slashgear ran the browser on the dual-core 800MHz A5 iPhone 4S against the latest and greatest Galaxy S II with dual-core 1.5GHz Qualcomm processor (skip ahead 4:30). From the video it looks like the iPhone 4S was faster (as expected). However, in their words…

…from initial results the iPhone 4S performs quite well, I’m sure everyone expected that as the original held its own pretty well too. One of the fastest processors around currently, the 1.5 GHz Qualcomm in the Galaxy S II performs very well but is just barely by a hair beat by the new A5 dual-core iPhone 4S in most tests. We could argue about this all day, or try other sites but when it really comes down to it iOS is highly efficient — not to mention many many websites are designed with iOS in mind.

Damn that is a huge screen.

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Facebook for iPad app goes live, we go hands-on: Chat, AirPlay, full-screen games and photos

Update: It is live, we’ve taken a walkthrough below.

According to The Verge (formerly known as This is my next), the elusive Facebook for iPad app is about to go live “momentarily” on the App Store. The iPhone app will also get updated, the publication has it, with bookmarks to apps, a new Requests dialog that will display app notifications, and support for Facebook Credits for in-app payments. VentureBeat quoted Facebook engineer Leon Dubinsky as describing the software on the Facebook blog, but no such post had gone live at press time. While the social networking giant has yet to formally announce the program, they already have a dedicated URL up and running at facebook.com/mobile/ipad.

The page invites users to download the free Facebook for iPad app here. That URL actually leads to the existing iPhone app, which indicates that both the new iPad app and the existing iPhone client have been merged into a universal binary. The official list of features doesn’t disappoint: You can chat on the iPad’s beautiful 9.7-inch canvas, browse and flip through your friends’ photos, as well as play games and watch high-definition movies in full screen mode.

What’s best, it supports AirPlay technology so you can easily and wirelessly beam your videos and snaps to that big telly in your living room through the Apple TV set-top box, which is also up for an update with 1080p video output via the A5 chip. At post time, the US App Store still had the iPhone app hosted at the URL, but it shouldn’t take too long before changes propagate throughout regional App Stores. Go past the break for release notes, more screenies and a hands on video.

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Fake iPhones (made from real parts) ring busted in Shanghai

What’s most interesting about these fake iPhones is that they were made from real iPhone parts.  The assumption is that the companies that made supplies for Apple would make additional parts and sell them to third parties who would somehow assemble a Frankenstein of iPhone and non-iPhone parts together and sell them at double the cost.

The cost to make one fake iPhone, which used some genuine parts, was around 2,000 yuan ($313). It was sold on unauthorized markets and on the Internet for around 4,000 yuan, only a few hundred yuan cheaper than the real iPhone, the newspaper said.

The fake iPhones had the same functions as the genuine ones but had a shorter battery life, it quoted the police as saying.

It would be interesting and surprising if they got iOS working on these.  I’m guessing a flavor of Android with a iOS-like skin was used. Apple would have a big problem on their hands if iOS was being pirated.

Updated with video of one of these fakes:

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The new iPhone…

Update Sep 27 – Apple has sent “Let’s Talk, iPhone” ;) invites to the event.

It’s time to show our cards.

If you crack open the casing of the new iPhone, you will find significant upgrades from the iPhone 4. The new iPhone features Apple’s dual-core A5 processor like the iPad 2 for even faster performance, better gaming, and drastically improved graphics. Apple didn’t stop there though. Unlike the iPad 2, the new iPhone packs 1GB of RAM, according to a source familiar with the SOC’s manufacturing. That not only means better web browsing, but more importantly, new background tasks that Apple will introduce in the new iPhone’s software will perform much better.

The new iPhone will also feature an upgraded camera system. In terms of hardware, the new camera is an 8 megapixel sensor that takes incredibly high-resolution and clear shots, even in low light conditions because it has a backlit sensor. Also, panorama photography references have been found in the iOS SDK on multiple occasions which means we’ll likely see that feature. Other than that, the camera front-end system is reportedly mostly the same.

The new iPhone also contains Qualcomm Gobi Baseband chips that allow it to operate on both GSM and CDMA networks. We can’t yet confirm or deny the rumors that Apple was building a virtual SIM card system or if it has an NFC chip yet, however.

Although some may be happy with the new iPhone’s substantial internal hardware boosts, the new device’s biggest selling point is actually a software feature called Assistant. As we first revealed, Assistant is Apple’s Siri-inspired, system-wide voice navigation system. It so far appears that iPhone 4 and iPhone 3GS users will be left out in the fun, unfortunately, because the feature requires the A5 CPU and additional RAM.

Everything you could possibly want to know about Assistant is after the break…

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iPhone 4S cases showing up in retail channels?

Adding some validity to the possibility of a new iPhone branded “4S”, @chronicwire has just posted the images below showing the iPhone 4S branding on what looks like legit packaging for a new Otter Box iPhone case.

Another couple if you head down south. Notice the changed volume buttons that may or may not be indicative of a volume button to camera shutter feature.

LEAK: Photo of the back of the package showing the iPhone 4S case, depicting new volume buttons, and on the right side. New soft-looking volume buttons being on right side of iPhone 4S can probably be attributed to the “volume button to take pic” iOS5 feature

Update (Sept 23rd): TUAW talked to Otterbox who clarified:

She explained that the ad reflected the current conversations going on in the blogosphere. “Like many, we are watching the rumor sites and using information to plan ahead as much as we can.” Otterbox promises support for whatever iPhone debuts, but they’re emphatically not stating or leaking anything further. “We do not have any confidentiality agreements with Apple,” Richardson told TUAW.

As for those iPhone 4S Otterbox packaging photos that leaked yesterday, she explained, “What was circulating yesterday was not a case image for the iPhone 4S but a packaging design.” Otterbox has not identified the source of the photos.
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AllThingsD: Apple CEO Tim Cook to unveil iPhone 5 at October 4 media event


Apple CEO Tim Cook at the January 11 Verizon iPhone presser

We received an interesting tip in July that AT&T would be changing its iPhone tiers on October 4th. At the time, we said,

AT&T raises iPhone device tier on October 4th, perhaps signaling launch date?

Fast forward to today. AllThingsD reports that Apple CEO Tim Cook will unveil a fifth-generation iPhone at a media event scheduled for Tuesday, October 4:

Tuesday, October 4. That’s the day Apple is currently expected to hold its next big media event, according to sources close to the situation, where the tech giant will unveil the next iteration of its popular iPhone.

Author John Paczkowski mentions Apple could change plans at any time. The time frame jibes with the publication’s previous report calling for a mid-October launch of the next iPhone. Kara Swisher, another author with AllThingsD, wrote on Twitter last month that there will be no iPhone event “until Oc … to … ber”.

This will obviously be a huge event for Tim Cook, his first in the CEO role. AllThingsD notes that pressure is on Tim Cook to perform well.

Cook is certain to preside over the iPhone 5 rollout. He has to, of course. To pass the presentation on to anyone else — even one of Apple’s key executives such as Phil Schiller, who has handled the Macworld and Worldwide Developers Conference keynotes in 2009 — would undercut Cook’s new role and reinforce public perception that its legendary outgoing CEO and co-founder Steve Jobs is Apple and that it will be a different company without him.

Canon PIXMA wireless printers get AirPrint support

Today Canon announced AirPrint support for their PIXMA series of Wireless Photo All-In-One inkjet printers, enabling wireless printing from iOS devices to the PIXMA MG8220, MG6220 and MG5320.

Along with the announcement, the company also confirmed the majority of their new Canon PIXMA lineup will get AirPrint support going forward. The PIXMA MG8220 goes for $299.99 on Amazon, the MG6220 for $199, and the MG5320 for $149. There’s a new Canon website for AirPrint as well.

A few months back HP also pushed out an update enabling AirPrint support for thirteen printers in their LaserJet series. Epson did the same a few weeks ago.

For the release head south V.

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‘iPhone 4S’ prototype isn’t likely from Apple


(flipped)

MacPost..posts..another image of today’s earlier ‘iPhone leak’ which shows much more of the front of the device.  In the time since our original post this morning the iPhone 4 repair experts at iFixyouri have chimed in to note that the grill on the white iPhone front plate is a non-OEM version which likely indicates that this isn’t from Apple.

Apple removed the grated grill during the white iPhone redesign to help with the proximity sensor issues.

Perhaps this one is built from parts floating around Asia, but it isn’t one that Apple would have put together itself – recently anyway.

More below:

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Hackers slap Lion overlay onto iOS, with surprisingly good results

Not, “put this on my iPhone now” good but “wow, that’s interesting and must’ve taken a lot of hard work” good. Lifehacker explains:

You can now grab the theme via an app on Theme Outlet. Here’s how. (And make sure you have Dreamboard installed, as this is a Dreamboard theme and requires it.)

  1. Open Cydia
  2. Tap Manage Sources
  3. Tap Edit, then Add, then add source fnetdesigns.com/cydia/repo
  4. Go to the Changes section and install Theme Outlet
  5. Close Cydia, go to your home screen, and open Theme Outlet
  6. Browse for OS X Ultimatum and download it from there
  7. Open up Dreamboard, browse for the OS X Lion Ultimatum theme, and install it.


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Code strings indicate iMessage might eventually integrate with iChat

(Concept video via MacStories)

Could Apple have plans to integrate iMessage, the new all-in-one messaging app in iOS 5, into OS Lion’s iChat, an app that is indeed in need of desperate attention? Perhaps.

The evidence comes from a developer who provided the following hints found in iChat’s framework in Lion. Of course it is only speculation at this point, but MacRumors guesses these elements have been added to provide cross-platform support for the iMessage protocol in iChat.

MacRumors reports:

Buried in the framework of OS X Lion’s iChat, are two new properties – The “timeDelivered” and “timeRead’ fields that indicate the tracking of delivery and read receipts for instant messages. These features, however, are not supported in any of iChat’s native messaging protocols, while the same features are offered in Apple’s iMessage protocol. These properties were also not present in previous versions of iChat prior to OS X Lion.


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