Apple roadmap leak reveals plan for budget iPhone, iPad mini 2, and new iMacs

By Graeme Burton
22 Jan 2013 View Comments
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Ming-Chi Kuo, a financial analyst with KGI Securities with a track record for forecasting Apple's product plans, has published what is believed to be a leaked roadmap of Apple products for the next year.

The plans suggest that rumours of a budget iPhone are correct, but suggest that the mooted iPhone 5s - an incremental upgrade to the current top-of-the-range iPhone 5 - will not appear before the autumn. Some speculation had suggested that Apple was already clearing the decks for a spring 2013 iPhone 5s launch.

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Likewise, the budget iPhone will also appear in the autumn. This will be the same size and shape as an iPhone 5 and encased in plastic, rather than metal, but will be heavier than the current iPhone 5. The budget iPhone ought to be available for free on a 24-month contract.

At around the same time, the new iPhone 5s will also launch, and will feature a new A7-series system-on-a-chip.

However, first up this year for Apple will be an Apple TV "refresh", implying that the long-awaited major launch of an Apple-branded television is still some way off. Steve Jobs had reportedly said shortly before his death that he had "cracked" the challenge of designing a slick and efficient interface for televisions.

A bigger challenge, though, is persuading television companies and programme makers to sign-up to become content providers to the television, which would connect over Wi-Fi to the internet. They are no doubt mindful of how the popularity of the Apple iPod and iTunes, in particular, marginalised the record business.

In June, a new MacBook Air will be launched, followed by a "Retina" MacBook Pro. The year will be complete with new releases of the Apple iMac and Mac mini.

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