The sport of Apple rumors is almost as old as the company itself, but now that the iPhone and the iPad are market leaders, every new piece of information is even more exhaustively parsed over. That's why the latest claims made by an analyst fresh from visiting Apple's suppliers in Asia are raising a few eyebrows.
Peter Misek, an analyst at Jefferies, released an note published earlier this week that claims that the next iPhone will feature a "new super HD camera/screen, a better battery and near field communications." The analyst goes on to assert that the phone will ship in June or July. The first two predictions related to a better display and better battery life are predictions that even the most casual Apple watchers already expect. But the notion that Apple will include NFC in its next model seems like a bit of a stretch. While NFC is huge in places like Japan and South Korea, the technology has yet to truly catch on in the mainstream of the U.S. Apple is known for its practice of deploying solutions that it feels it can mainstream with relative ease, making the idea of an NFC-enabled iPhone in the U.S. seem like an unlikely prospect.
The report also claims that Apple has a low-cost iPhone in the works. Misek said, "Our checks indicate a low-cost model would be a retooled iPhone 4 with a scaled-down modem, apps processor, etc. Foxconn... already has a supply chain for capacity scaling up to 200-300K units per day."
Misek has a hit and miss track record for predictions, but so far his results have mostly been on the mark. However, one of his favorite predictions, that Apple would release a smart television, has consistently failed to live up to his predictive abilities. Of course, if you keep predicting a relatively practical development, year after year, it's bound to come true eventually. This time the analyst is predicting that the Apple television will launch in September or October of 2013.