Three new reports show the state of the nation for the iPhone

Photo: ibtimes.com

Photo: ibtimes.com

The latest numbers from IDCABI and Strategy Analytics (the latter not yet online) paint an interesting picture of where the smartphone business currently stands, and where the iPhone sits within it.

The overall picture for smartphones is, of course, strong. IDC reports:

In the worldwide smartphone market, vendors shipped 237.9 million units in 2Q13 compared to the 156.2 million units shipped in 2Q12. This represents 52.3% year-over-year-growth, the highest annual growth rate in five quarters. Second quarter shipments were up 10.0% when compared to the 216.3 million units shipped in 1Q13.

While ABI pegged the year-on-year growth at a significantly lower 44 percent, it’s clear that much of the traditional featurephone market is switching to smartphones.

The high-end also remains strong, with both the iPhone and Samsung S4 outpacing the smartphone market as a whole, though both sets of figures show iPhone growth at a long-time low …  Read more

Plastic iPhone shell compared to older plastic iPhones and iPod touch in new high-quality video

Michael Kukielka, otherwise known as the DetroitBorg, posted the excellent video above showcasing one of the plastic iPhone shells that has been leaking all over the web like crazy. Besides the focus on the thinner ‘iPhone’ font on the back, we’re not seeing too much in the way of new stuff here, but it is nice to see the comparison, especially with the iPod touch and the plastic iPhone 3GS (which was alluded to many months ago).

Check out our gallery of 10 different color options for the plastic iPhone here.

I have a feeling that these things, especially at a reduced price, are going to be very popular with the mid-tier set. Thanks Niels!

(Update: A similar video from TechExamined below) Read more

2013: The year of the personalized, colorful, mid-tier smartphone

plastic

Choosing a phone is pretty simple if you’re the kind of person who wants the latest & greatest handset and has the budget to pay for it. Even if you’re not sure what platform you want, you’re essentially choosing between a handful of flagship products and are currently likely to walk away with an iPhone 5Samsung S4 or HTC One.

There isn’t too much head-scratching at the bottom end of the market either: buyers there don’t care about the handset, and take whatever freebie their carrier pushes at them.

But the mid-market is where life gets complicated. You care enough about your handset to want something decent, both in specs and design, but you don’t want to take out a mortgage to buy it. It’s this market that is going to get incredibly colorful this fall …  Read more

Plastic iPhone case put together in high quality video/gallery

Screen Shot 2013-07-06 at 8.28.30 AMClick for higher quality images

We’ve been looking at plastic renderings of the highly anticipated plastic “budget” iPhone for almost 6 months now. Analysts, leakers, and reports from all over have pinpointed a plastic shell in a variety of colors. We even commissioned a ten-color rendering way back in April (above). Now Techdy shows us what it would look like if one of those shells was put on a screen and given a high quality video/image treatment.

As can be seen from the images above, all the rumors about the low-cost plastic iPhone seem to be true. The budget iPhone will be made substantially from plastic (we can feel it’s actually polycarbonate material). It will have a 4” screen, like the iPhone 5, and interestingly, the budget iPhone actually has a shape that’s similar to Apple’s original iPod. When we hold the budget iPhone in our hands, the plastic chassis does not feel cheap at all. Unlike the plastic build quality of the Samsung Galaxy phones, the plastic material used on the budget iPhone feels more sturdy.

And guess what, we were able to fit the display assembly into the new budget iPhone’s rear shell. The display assembly just seemed to fit perfectly inside of the rear shell.

Another video courtesy of @MTPFlyers:

And a third video from @DetroitBORG:

Thanks Cyril! More high quality images below:

Read more

More alleged leaked photos of plastic iPhone shells now show blue variety

iPhone-Plastique-Couleurs-Photo

French site Nowhereelse has posted what it claims are more leaked photos from China of casings for the long-rumored plastic iPhone.

We’re not entirely convinced these are the real deal and not just clones made based off of plastic iPhone rumors stretching back months. While the colors are  broadly consistent with those of the iPod touch/nano, and we’d expect to see differences between metal and plastic, those colors look rather garish even allowing for the poor lighting. Comparison after the break …  Read more

Will the Plastic iPhone knock the iPhone 4S out of this year’s free iPhone pattern?

Credit: Ferry Passchier

Credit: Ferry Passchier

We’ve seen a pretty consistent pattern when a new iPhone is released: the previous model gets significantly cheaper, and the model before that tends to be widely available on free-with-contract deals. We’ve already seen the process beginning in anticipation of the 5S, with AT&T cutting the on-contract price of the iPhone 5 to $99 and 4S to $49, with Walmart going a little further with a $39 deal for the 4S.

But with the prospect of the long-awaited low-cost (or lower-cost!) iPhone being released at the same time as the 5S, might we expect to see the plastic iPhone being offered as the freebie in the iPhone 4S’s place … ?  Read more