It seems like only yesterday the whole world was focused on
the possibility that Apple (NASDAQ:
) might be developing a watch.
Now that the enthusiasm has withered away, the rumor mill has
shifted its focus to a more common target: the release of the
next iPhone. Very few bloggers and analysts are convinced that
the iPhone 6 will arrive this year, prompting mountains of
speculation that an upgraded iPhone 5 (presumably titled the
iPhone 5S) will ship before the year's end.
In 2012, many rumors pointed to a winter 2013 release. Last
month there were reports of a spring or early summer release. Now
that winter is almost over, the release date has once again
shifted. According to
, the new date could be August 2013.
The Apple-centered publication also reported that Foxconn --
the manufacturer behind most of Apple's products -- will
exclusively produce the iPhone 5S.
Little is known about the iPhone 5S, but many expect it to be
a world phone that will allow Apple to produce one unit for a
multitude of carriers.
This could feasibly eliminate some of the carrier-specific
unit shortages that occurred in the United States, since AT&T
), Sprint (NYSE:
) and Verizon (NYSE:
) users would able to purchase the same model. It would also
allow Apple to manufacture one model for multiple carriers around
AppleInsider speculated that one of them could be China Mobile
), the largest cellular service provider in China. Many analysts
believe that Apple's growth will be severely limited until it is
able to sign a deal with China Mobile, which services nearly 700
Despite this assessment, Apple has successfully increased
sales of the iPhone during every fall quarter (reported as
Apple's fiscal first quarter) for the past four years. In the
fall of 2009, Apple sold
8.7 million iPhones
. The company sold
16.24 million units
during the same period in 2010.
One year later, Apple increased its sales by 128 percent,
37 million units
. In the fall of 2012, iPhone sales achieved another milestone,
47.8 million units
While those numbers have been enough to impress consumers,
they do not seem to be having a positive effect on the investor
community. Year-to-date, Apple is down more than 19 percent. The
company has experienced steady declines for six months, dropping
33 percent since August 31, 2012.
(c) 2013 Benzinga.com. Benzinga does not provide investment
advice. All rights reserved.
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