New iPhone headed to production, reports say
Deliveries of the just-released iPhone 5 have been painfully slow, and now a Chinese-language newspaper reports that Apple is pushing ahead with a successor.
The world's most valuable company is running into problems with its most important product. It can't make enough. Yes, demand is high, but there's more to the story. Apple's manufacturing partner, Foxconn, is having a bunch of production issues.
"The iPhone 5 is the most difficult device that Foxconn has ever assembled," an anonymous official at the company told The Wall Street Journal last month. "To make it light and thin, the design is very complicated."
Critics say the phone is absolutely amazing. "This is without a doubt the best iPhone yet," Engadget raves. "This is a hallmark of design. This is the one you've been waiting for."
And waiting for . . . and waiting for. A phone is not worth that wait. Not when plenty of competing phones built on Google's (GOOG) Android platform are available. Apple has a real problem on its hands -- one that could dent its revenue this holiday quarter. Apple sold more than 5 million iPhone 5 units in the first three days, but analysts were expecting as many as 10 million.
"We believe that sales could have potentially been much higher if not for supply constraints," William Power, an analyst with Baird Equity Research, wrote in a client note, according to Reuters.
So it's not that surprising to read rumors that Apple is basically moving full speed ahead with the next version of the iPhone, unofficially named the iPhone 5S. Digitimes reports that Apple is expected to begin production on a small batch of iPhone 5S phones in December, likely only 50,000 to 100,000 units.
"Facing low yield rates in the production of iPhone 5, Apple has accelerated the certification processes for related parts and components for the iPhone 5S," reports the Chinese-language Commercial Times, according to Digitimes. The Commercial Times also says the iPhone 5S will enter mass production in the first quarter of next year.
That timing would be highly extraordinary, since the iPhone 5 just launched in September. "If this new report from China turns out to be accurate, it could represent a dramatic shift in product release strategy for Apple, perhaps spurred on by increased competition from the likes of Samsung, and a raft of other Android-based smartphone competitors," PC Magazine writes.
What about this theory? The iPhone 5 is so tough to make, forcing the normally reliable Foxconn into hardware scratches and other production issues, that Apple is essentially moving on to the next version, which it will ensure has none of those problems.
Of course, this could all be an empty rumor. Digitimes is not known for its sterling accuracy. But even a rumor could hurt Apple's bottom line. If enough people think a new iPhone 5S is coming out early next year, then current sales of the iPhone 5 will take a hit. Rumors have dinged Apple's revenue plenty in the past.
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I have never seen a droid user who is ever truly happy with their phone either. You may say Apple users are iSheep, or snobs, whatever you want to call us, but while I have had the same iPhone 4 from it's release, I have seen droid users go from phone to phone to phone. Why? Because they are no different, always going from upgrade to upgrade. I love my iPhone, and you may love your droid, so stay with droid, and you wont sell me on your awesome galaxy3, then 4, then 5...whatever. We'll just have to learn to live together...trust me, we can do this...
Does no body understand the concept of panned obsolescent. This was pioneered by Polaroid years ago. They already have the next 5 versions designed and in a safe. They have researched and found they can make more money off of frequent upgrades instead of lesser upgrades with more content.
Disingenuous story fails to note that the GS3 has been taking honors over the iP5, particularly in Consumer Reports.
If these companies don't tighten-up, their workers will start becoming bums - jusit like "us" American workers - at least THAT is what Romney and his pals at FOX News would lead you to believe.
What will I do now with the half-cord of "old" iPhones I have
stacked up in the backyard that still work but are "outdated?"
Are you GETTING IT YET, Wall Street? YOU are done in America.
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