Today, WSJ offered up a new rumor, citing their “people familiar with the situation,” regarding the iPhone 5′s display and production schedule. The report, filed by Lorainne Luk and Juno Osawa, further support the wide-held belief that the new iPhone will feature a screen size increase somewhere in the 4-inch range. This may not come as big news to those who have been following iPhone 5 rumors for the past year or so, but the WSJ article’s claims regarding the production and order schedule for the iPhone 5′s new display is noteworthy:
“Production is set to begin next month for the screens, which measure at least 4 inches diagonally compared with 3.5 inches on the iPhone 4S, the latest phone from Apple, the people said.”
Assuming that WSJ has the story right, this news would obviously disqualify the iPhone 5 from making its debut at the WWDC this year, as it remains to be seen if there would be enough lead time between now and the actual launch of a post-WWDC-announced iPhone 5 to produce enough iPhone 5s for a launch in early July. Jonny Evans at Computerworld makes this point well, stating: “Given the need to stockpile millions of these displays in order to build millions of iPhones, commencing display production marries well with claims of a September launch for the device.”
Stalwart June iPhone 5 release date truthers will ask: how accurate and reliable is WSJ and their “people familiar with the situation?”
Pretty accurate and reliable.
I went back into WSJ’s archives to see what they were saying about iPhone 5 production last year. The most pertinent article I found was from Ms. Luk herself, who wrote this on July 7th, 2011 in her article, “Apple Orders Parts For iPhone Upgrade:
“Apple has placed orders for key components used in a next-generation iPhone it is preparing to launch sometime in the third quarter, according to people familiar with the situation.”
Later in this article, Luk gets predictions of the 2011 iPhone wrong, as it did not turn out to feature any form factor upgrades. However, tapping her Asian industry sources, she made a similar report last July that resulted in an iPhone 4S announcement in early October.
The same day, Ms. Luk also filed this report together with the oft-cited Yukari Iwatani Kane, noting: “Apple has ordered key components for a new iPhone it is aiming to launch by the end of September, said people familiar with the situation.” Luk and Kane’s prediction of a September launch was short by a month, but given the fact that Luk’s report today is pointing to a June production ramp-up (as opposed to July last year), her story fits together with Jonny Evans’ assertion.
“It’s the Week We’ve all Been Waiting For.”
The slogan for this year’s Worldwide Developer’s Conference, the event that Apple used to announce previous iPhone iterations up until last year, is “It’s the Week We’ve all Been Waiting For.” With the WSJ now asserting that iPhone 5 production has yet to officially begin, and a report from earlier in the week claiming that, according to the Foxconn CEO, the iTV will not see production commence until later in the year, it remains too be seen what Apple will release at this year’s WWDC that will live up to its own slogan.
iOS 6 and a new generation of MacBooks seems like a foregone conclusion, but it remains to be seen if these releases would “wow” Appledom to the level that would make WWDC week seem like “the week we’ve all been waiting for.”
By Michael Nace