Tomorrow, Apple is expected to announce their new line of iPhones at a media event in Cupertino. New CEO Tim Cook will likely take the stage to introduce Apple's newest smartphone(s). Rumor has it that the company could unveil two devices, the iPhone 5 and a lower-cost version of the iPhone 4 called the iPhone 4S.
Though tech journalists and bloggers have been pretty responsible in restraining themselves from mindless speculation (cough), there are a whole bunch of rumors out there about what to expect from Apple's next-generation smartphones. We've been following the rumors all summer and into the fall; here's our collection of everything we might reasonably expect out of the Apple media event on Tuesday.
The iPhone 5
Apple might not break out this bad boy tomorrow and may opt, instead, to introduce only a low-cost iPhone 4S. Let's assume they will, however, and tell you everything we know about it.
The iPhone 5 COULD have:
-A teardrop design, rather than the more squarish one of the iPhone 4. Imagine the curves of the MacBook Air scaled down to the Apple phone.
-Apple's dual-core A5 processor, which currently powers the iPad 2. This chip would give the iPhone considerably higher-processing power than the iPhone 4 (which is built around--you guessed it--the A4), improving its suitability for graphics-intensive smartphone gaming, among other things. For a nice breakdown of the current leaders in smartphone processors, check out this helpful survey done by AnandTech.
-An 8 megapixel camera rear-facing camera, up from 5 megapixels on the iPhone 4. Several other smartphone cameras have been bumped up to 8 megapixels, and a few even have 12 megapixels.
-A slightly larger screen, somewhere in the neighborhood of four inches. By contrast, the iPhone 4 features a display measuring 3.5 inches.
-Thinner body. A lot of the cases popping up have indicated a slimmed-down iPhone 5.
-A redesigned home button. At least two supposed design leaks showed an elongated oval for the home button. The iPhone 4's sports a circular button.
-The ability to operate on the GSM and CDMA networks, making it more suitable for international travelers.
-Expanded voice command integration. Stevie Wonder loves the current iPhone, and if the big report from 9to5mac is true, he's going to love the next one even more. Apple is expected to include extended voice command integration into its new phones; expected features include ability to dictate text messages, ask for directions and schedule events on the calendar.
-iOS 5, Apple's latest version of its mobile software, which is supposed to roll out this fall.
-The option for a prepaid contract. Rather than paying a monthly service contract from mobile carriers, customers might be able to "pay-as-they-go" for minutes.
-NFC capability for smartphone payments, tied into the credit card information stored on iTunes.
-A 64GB option. This would give it twice the storage of the most spacious iPhone 4 offering.
The iPhone 4S
The iPhone 4S is rumored to be an Apple smartphone for budget shoppers and is said to be quite similar to the current iPhone 4 in appearance.
The iPhone 4S COULD have:
-A $99 price tag. If Apple really is going after budget smartphone shoppers, this might go a long way toward enticing them.
-An 8GB hard drive. Less storage space = lower cost.
-The 8 megapixel camera.
-The A5 processor.
- iOS 5.
-An identical form factor to the iPhone 4, but with cheaper parts on the inside.
-Glass front and back.
-An option to get it in white.
The long-awaited update to Apple's mobile operating system should be announced at the media event as well.
Apple's iOS 5 COULD have:
-A 'Find My Friends' service. If iPhone users agree to let Apple track their locations, friends with iPhones would be able to see where they are on a map, similar to the way they can on Googles Latitude.
-Increased Voice Command capabilities. 9to5mac has the full report, but highlights include the ability to dictate text messages, file calendar entries, ask for and receive directions and integration with computation search engine Wolfram Alpha, which would allow iPhone owners to ask their phone factual and mathematical questions. Check out Wolfram Alpha's online search engine to get an idea of what kind of computing it can do.
-Wireless mirroring. Right now, you can buy adapters that will send whatever is on your iPad or iPhone screen to your television or monitor without a cable, but "wireless mirroring," as it is called, is currently unavailable on Apple's gadgets. Expect this to change with iOS 5. Apple showed this off in July, so it's definitely coming.
VARIOUS OTHER STUFF
There are also whispers of:
-A Facebook app for iPad. This has been rumored for so, so long, but there is at least the possibility that Apple and Facebook could finally play nice and put out a Facebook app designed for the Apple tablet.
-New MacBooks and iMacs. Macotakara reported that Apple is gearing up to release a whole new line of MacBooks in time for Christmas; AppleInsider agrees and adds that Apple might also refresh its iMacs. It is unlikely that they would announce them simultaneously with their new iPhones, but it is a possibility.
-The death of the iPod Classic. Evidence is pointing to the discontinuation of both the iPod Classic (and its iconic track wheel) and the iPod Shuffle.
-A 3G capable iPod Touch. This one doesn't have much steam behind it, but AppleNApps reported on September 7 that a 3G iPod Touch was coming out "this month," or whenever the Apple media event was. Now we'll find it how good their source was.
-An appearance by Steve Jobs. "One more thing..."
-An 8GB iPod 4. Rather than roll out the iPhone 4S with an 8GB option, Apple might choose to just offer an 8GB iPhone 4 for $99.
Phew! We're going to start finding out which of these are true and which are phony bologna on Tuesday afternoon. The Apple media event is scheduled for 1 P.M. EST/10AM PST, and HuffPost will be covering the whole thing for your edification and your pleasure.
For a look at some of last week's hottest Apple rumors, take a look at the slideshow (below).