It has come to our attention that Apple is planning to combine iOS 5 and iCloud of hardware internally referred to as the iCloud iPhone,” according to Applenapps, citing sources ‘familar with the matter.’
So, is this iPhone 5? Well, apparently not.
There are two models in the making – which we knew already – iPhone 5 and a rumoured iPhone 4 cheapie, which now appears to be the smartphone getting the iCloud treatment.
iCloud, Apple’s free cloud storage service, launched in June, carries “the centre of our digital lives into the cloud,” said Steve Jobs at the launch.
“iCloud iPhone will rely heavily on Apple’s new cloud based offering, and less on internal storage,” say Applenapps sources.
Previously, Apple did say there was ‘transition’ in store for its new phones, so this could well be the change described.
This move would allow Apple cut its production costs by farming out internal storage to its fledgling iCloud and having less Flash memory on board. Bingo.
This news comes as iPhone has come under increasing pressure from cheaper Androids hitting the market a dime a dozen. Apple could have well woken up to the fact that its elitist device needs to get some mainstream pricing to fend off rivals.
Other changes to our beloved iPhone 4 will include mostly external redesigns – which will be different to the current version – and will wear an an aluminum back panel the same as the iPad 2, shying away from the glass encasing. (And run iOS 5, bien sur.)
And the differences will be quiet noticeable, say sources, and is said to look like an iPad at first glance (can’t wait).
Like the iPad 2, ‘5’ will indeed be thinner, faster, and lighter sporting the same A5 chip for fast processing, as well as design changes to address previous antennae issues with ‘4’, but “the real star of the show will be the iCloud iPhone,” the sources indicate.
And another thing, iPhone 5 is said to be lacking 4G LTE technology, giving its understudy, the iCloud iPhone, another reason to steal its thunder.
Prices of the iPhone 4 are already being slashed stateside as retailers prepare for the new inventory.
So, how much will the cheapie version be? Apple are said to be ‘aiming’ for US$400 outright and free on a two year contract, while the new 5 will be $199 on contract.
This report appears to have legs, coming from three reliable sources from various levels of Cupertino.
iOS 5 and iCloud are due to launch in the “fall” (i.e. spring Down Under) – an ideal time to roll out the spanking new iPhones also, we do think.
Oh, and one additional footnote: iPhone 5 is said to feature Qualcomm’s wireless chip meaning GSM and CDMA version will be mashed into the one model.