The iPhone 4 has honestly, run its course. In terms of numbers, it did extremely well. As per Apple’s norm, it has become the most widely sold Smartphone is existence. However, it had its share of issues. Antenna troubles, call failures and network issues. A lot has changed in Smartphone marketplace the last year with AT&T losing their monopoly on Apple’s biggest seller and the rise of Android (though that has been building for years), it is clearly time for a new Apple device or two.
I believe today’s announcement by Apple will likely reveal not one, but two devices. The widely rumored iPhone 5 is sure to be on display. That device will likely have an improved camera, processor, and possibly a larger screen size (although not much bigger). It will also look quite a bit different than the iPhone 4; a device that while impressive had its share of problems based on the design alone. Apple is likely going to want to move away from that design and show us something different. In fact, I could see the default color being white instead of the ubiquitous black Apple has produced over the last few versions. The white would signify an entirely new approach to design or something to that effect.
Another device could possibly be named as well, a version of the iPhone 4 that is just for Sprint. The iPhone 4S(?) will have all of the same functionality as the other iPhone 4’s. I will say that if I am right and this product is announced, then someone at Sprint needs to be fired if they paid a ton of money for a Sprint specific iPhone 4. While the phone will undoubtedly sell, it is unlikely that it will have any more traction for Sprint than their Android phones. It certainly wouldn’t make people flock to their service.
Moving back to the new phone, the iPhone 5 will likely not be ‘4G’ based. There simply isn’t a large enough ‘4G’ network to offer it for a phone that would thirst for bandwidth. It will likely have the same sized hard drive (or possibly even a smaller one than the iPhone 4). After all, space is going to the cloud. Of course, all of that cloud downloading works to the benefit of AT&T and Verizon and all of the other networks that charge to download data off of their network.
Finally, the phone will be released for a bunch of networks, at least it should be. Apple made a great play by being exclusive to AT&T the first few years they created the device. They made another good move to add Verizon support. At this point, in order to compete with the entire Android marketplace (because with Apple is truly is their device vs. the world) they will need to really open up their phone to all of the major networks. Maybe we will see that today. I’m not sure though. Apple has a way to always surprise me and I don’t say that as a fanboy in that, ‘ah shucks, they are so great‘ way. The surprises aren’t always good ones. Hopefully today, they will be.