San Fransisco: October 4
Are you ready for iPhone 5? The wait will be over soon as Apple Inc will unveil the new version of iPhone after the break of 15 months which will be faster, lighter, thinner and larger-screened.
This time the responsibility is on new CEO Tim Cook who is eager to prove his capabilities as this will his first major launch after Steve Jobs who took Apple to new heights. New Apple iPhone will challenge the competition given by Google Inc’s Android and closest rival Samsung Electronics’ Galaxy phones and try to sustain top position with the fifth incarnation of this revolutionary gadget. iPhone 4 has gone to more than 20 million hands and it will be a challenge for Cook to surpass such popularity.
Apple launches are some of the hottest events on the tech calendar, scrutinized by fans, investors, the media and industry insiders alike. Tuesday’s “Let’s talk iPhone” show, starting at 1 pm Eastern time, will mark Cook’s unofficial debut since taking over from co-founder Jobs in August.
Some shareholders and analysts expect a cameo appearance by Jobs, now chairman, though a no-show would not be a major disappointment.
Some on Wall Street also expect the company to unveil a cheaper model tailor-made for the fast-growing Asian market, one of the few arenas where Apple can accelerate its growth.
“We expect improved processing power and camera capabilities, with a potential bump in RAM, though that may not be needed with iCloud,” said William Power, analyst with Baird Equity Research.
“Various sources have suggested that Apple will debut more robust voice control functionality,” he added.
The new iPhone is also expected to come loaded with the updated iOS5 software that Apple unveiled in June. Some of the new features include improved notification functions and better Twitter integration.
The iPhone — still the gold standard in the smartphone market — has been a huge success since it debuted in 2007, transforming it into one of the world’s leading consumer electronics powerhouses.
But it faces stiff competition from phones based on Google’s Android operating system, which led the U.S. market with a 43 per cent share, Nielsen data show. The iPhone was No. 2 with 28 per cent.
Globally, according to IHS iSuppli, iPhone shipments climbed 9.1 per cent in the second quarter while Nokia’s plummeted more than 30 per cent, handing the top spot to Apple with a market share of 18.4 per cent. Samsung, whose shipments grew even faster, is coming on strong with a global market share of 17.8 per cent.
The iPhone 4 pricing starts at $199 and is available on the networks of AT&T Inc and Verizon Wireless, a venture of Verizon Communications Inc and Vodafone Group Plc. Many analysts expect Sprint will become the third US operator to sell the iPhone when the next version is launched.
(with inputs from TOI)