We learned yesterday that Thailand’s National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission has approved the sale of two unreleased iPhones, specifically with the model numbers A1524 & A1586, ahead of the expected announcement on September 9th. Confirmation of the approval for the new iPhone models was even publicized via Twitter by the NBTC’s Secretary General in addition to being discussed on video.
Whether or not the two new model numbers point to the 4.7-inch and 5.5-inch versions of the next generation iPhone or simply changes to existing iPhone models sold in Thailand isn’t certain until the devices hit the market, but a local report filed from Thai Rath claims that Apple South Asia has “requested a meeting to discuss the case of the NBTC,” suggesting these model numbers are more than just changes to existing devices…
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According to the report, Apple expressed concern that confidential information including device specifications would surface out of the National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission following the disclosure and approval before the company is prepared to bring the device to market next month, but the NBTC Secretary General apparently insisted that Thailand’s disclosure process fit with the laws of the nation as device specifications were not revealed.
The report also notes that Apple could decide to not sale the new iPhone models in Thailand following this episode, but that would not be expected considering the business implications that would have, of course. While the publicity of the disclosure of the two model numbers’ approval in Thailand may not have an impact on the device sales in the country, it seems the model numbers going public skated close enough to the edge to become an issue for the Cupertino company, regardless, which may further validate these as new models rather than updated existing hardware.
Apple is expected to reveal the next generation of iPhone hardware at an unannounced event scheduled for September 9th.