We’re in the middle of summer now, which means that all eyes in the tech world are turning toward Apple (AAPL).
The company traditionally unveils and releases its new iPhone products in the fall of each year, and after disappointing numbers for the iPhone 5, the company has a lot riding on the next version of the device.
This will be the first new iPhone to come loaded with iOS7, the first operating system from new senior designer Jony Ive. However, speculation has abounded about whether we’ll see a whole new phone (an iPhone 6), or just a new iteration (an iPhone 5S).
As it turns out, the answer might be both.
Consumers and companies shifting more toward lower-margin, cheaper smartphones are a threat to Apple and its expensive, high-margin devices. And with Google’s (GOOG) Android constantly eating up market share, speculation is that Apple has been working on a new, cheaper iPhone that’s expected to play particularly well in emerging markets.
Apple is fervently denying rumors of the budget iPhone, but that hasn’t stopped the rumors from spreading. According to International Business Times, the iPhone 5S will actually be the budget version of the iPhone, and the new device will simply be called the new iPhone. Both devices would be launched at the same time, allowing Apple to capitalize on upgrades as well as new users.
So what’s going to be in these new iPhones? Tech Radar has a good roundup of rumored features, including near-field communication, eye tracking and 1080p HD screens. CNET also has a wish list of iPhone features that asks for a customizable home screen and an upgrade for voice-recognition software Siri.
We’ll have to wait to see how these rumors will play with news that Apple is stocking up on developers for its rumored iWatch. The iWatch seems to be on track for a much later debut, so the two probably won’t interfere. But it should be an interesting development to keep an eye on either way.
Adam Benjamin is an Assistant Editor at InvestorPlace. As of this writing, he did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities.