Rumours Suggest 5-Megapixel iPhone In June

Peter Judge has been involved with tech B2B publishing in the UK for many years, working at Ziff-Davis, ZDNet, IDG and Reed. His main interests are networking security, mobility and cloud

A conference hall booking and an order for camera units – does this add up to Apple’s iPhone 4G?

Rumours have surfaced on the Internet that Apple could be launching a next-generation iPhone, with a much-improved camera, in June.

The MacRumors site has reported that some websites are already getting hits from devices running “version 4.0” of the Apple iPhone OS, suggesting the new version is in use by testers. Meanwhile, the Moscone Centre in San Francisco has been booked out from June 28 to July 2, the likely dates for Apple’s Worldwide Developer Conference, for a “corporate event”.

The rumour of a 5Mpixel camera comes from an unconfirmed report, in Digitimes, that Apple has ordered 40 to 45 million 5Mpixel camera components. That would be a sensible upgrade, as the iPhone’s camera has been criticised in reviews of current models.

However, the Register points out that this would more than double this year’s iPhone volumes, and suggests some or all of these cameras are destined for the other big fumoured Apple device – the Tablet.

No-one has much idea what will be in the new iPhone. although the sensible money would be on a repeat of this years 3GS. This would mean a moderate, not earth-shaking improvement in functions, enough to allow Apple to keep the device’s high price a little longer, and ride the curve downwards, maximising profits while it gradually becomes a mass market item.

The iPhone is still very successful, despite the growing likelihood of serious competition from Google’s Android, and rumours of the Google-branded Nexus One. Analysts have predicted price cuts and moderate improvements for the iPhone in 2010.

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In the UK, Tesco has brought the price of existing iPhones down a little, but Orange and Vodafone, picking up the device for the first time, have not brought its price down.