While early speculation suggested the device would be more a refinement of the iPhone 4 than an overhaul, recent supply chain chatter indicates it might turn out to be quite a bit more. In addition to the expected under-the-hood improvements — the faster A5 processor on which the iPad 2 runs and a higher resolution 8 megapixel rear camera — supply chain sources tell Sterne Agee analyst Shaw Wu the iPhone 5 will feature a thinner design with a wider display.
“We are picking up that this ‘interim’ iPhone refresh in the Fall timeframe could be a bigger upgrade than we expected,” Wu says. “In addition to a dual- core processor that we have talked about before, our supply chain sources indicate that it will sport a slightly larger display than the current 3.5-inch retina display that is already industry leading. We are picking up that it will retain a similar form factor and size but with thinner bezel. … We believe this keeps the iPhone fresh and competitive and helps maintain its leadership position.”
One thing Wu says the iPhone 5 won’t feature: An LTE chipset.
“[The handset] will not likely incorporate 4G LTE due to battery life issues and spotty network coverage,” says Wu adding, “ironically, if anyone is in a position to fix these weaknesses, it would be Apple.”