technology/bits-iphone5/bits-iphone5-blog480.jpg" alt="iPhone 5 case" />photo via bgr.com
We’re just weeks away from the announcement of the new Apple iPhone 5, according to an Apple employee who asked not to be named because he was not allowed to speak publicly for the company.
As the excitement for Apple’s latest product revs up, chatter about the phone is starting to fly around the Web at warp speeds.
On Thursday the technology blog Boy Genius Report posted images of a new iPhone case from the site of a company called Case-Mate. The images were visible on the company’s site for a short period of time before they were replaced with a curiously cryptic page that says, “We’ll have your cases when you have your new iPhone.”
From descriptions I’ve heard of the new iPhone from Apple employees, the images seemed potentially authentic. But it seems that Case-Mate might beÂ sneakilyÂ trying to take advantage of the excitement over the phone by posting and then unposting the images. These things rarely happen accidentally, especially when it comes to new Apple products.
Sneaky public relations tactics aside,Â an engineerÂ familiarÂ with the new iPhone said it would be fairly different from the iPhone 4 — including on the inside.
The new iPhone will come with an eight-megapixel camera, this person said, an upgrade from the five-megapixel camera in the iPhone 4. Earlier this year Howard Stringer, Sony’s chief executive, let it slip that the next iPhone would be updated with an eight-megapixel camera made by Sony. The Apple engineer also said the new phone would have a faster A5 dual-core processor.
Apple patents and recent new hires show that the company plans to add mobile payment functions to a future iPhone too â" although it is unclear if that will happen this year.
As I’ve written in the past, two people with knowledge of the inner workings of Apple’s next-generation iPhones say either the iPhone 5 or iPhone 6 will include a new chip that is made by Qualcomm. This chip will include near-field communication technology, known as N.F.C., that can be used to make mobile payments by waving the phone over an N.F.C. reader, just like swiping a credit card at a terminal.
When Apple does introduce a mobile-payment-ready iPhone, the company will immediately have an advantage over its competitors, including Google and Microsoft, which are trying to push payments on mobile devices too. One person familiar with Apple’s plans said the phoneâs payment information would be tied to customers’ iTunes accounts, which would make it simple for customers to set up a payment account on the iPhone by simply logging into iTunes.
According to Apple, 200 million people have stored their credit card information on iTunes.