According to two sources with ‘knowledge of the matter’ (I love that line), a cheaper 8GB iPhone 4 has already undergone manufacturing by Apple’s Asian suppliers, with the flash drive being manufactured by a Korean company (Samsung??), and is expected to ‘launch within weeks’.
Asian suppliers to Apple Inc have begun manufacturing a lower-priced version of its hot-selling iPhone 4 with a smaller 8 gigabyte flash drive, according to two people with knowledge of the matter.
The flash drive for the 8GB iPhone 4 is being manufactured by a Korean company, one of the people said Tuesday, declining to name the company. Apple currently sources its flash drives from Japan’s Toshiba and South Korea’s Samsung Electronics.
The point of a cheaper iPhone 4 is to launch Apple’s push into emerging markets, where Android phones and BlackBerrys tend to dominate the low/mid range. An iPhone 4 below $200 would most likely be redesigned with lower specs to accommodate the price, according to Yuanta Securities analyst, Bonnie Chang.
The iPhone 5 is Coming By the End of September?
As for the iPhone 5, sources mention to Reuters it’s slated for an end of September launch, and will look identical to the iPhone 4 but have a larger screen, better antenna, and 8 megapixel camera. Manufacturers have had orders for up to 45 million units with Hon Hai and Pegatron making the phone.
Previously we’ve heard of a cheaper iPhone from the WSJ, an October launch date via TiPB, and Digitimes reports mentioning Pegatron manufacturing the iPhone 5. With iOS 5 beta 6 released just last week, I’d expect an Apple event for September to come soon to announce iOS 5 GM and the next iPhone models.