Here are your Apple rumors and AAPL news items for today:
Premium: According to one investment analyst, Apple (AAPL) plans to make consumers pay more for a bigger iPhone, AppleInsider notes. Jeffries analyst Peter Misek says that Apple has approached wireless carriers looking for them to support a $100 increase in the price of new flagship iPhone models. That would boost the starting price of an iPhone 6 to about $300 with a contract. While carriers are resistant to the demand, Misek expects Apple to extract some level of price hike from the carriers — who subsidize iPhones sold on contract — because the release of the iPhone 6 is likely to be the biggest smartphone launch of the year. If Apple succeeds in getting a $50 price increase, it would offset costs associated with producing a fresh iPhone design. That price increase could add 2% to Apple revenues and 11% to the iPhone-maker’s earnings per share. Apple is widely expected to release two iPhone models this year: one with a 4.7-inch screen, and a phablet-style iPhone with a 5.5-inch screen. Most analyst predict a September launch for at least the 4.7-inch iPhone 6, with the 5.5-inch iPhone 6 possibly launching some time later.
Upgrade: Apple’s CarPlay will be coming to aftermarket products later this year, Nikkei notes. Japanese electronics-maker Alpine Electronics will launch a standalone console with CarPlay compatibility in the fall. The console will connect to iPhones through a wire, permitting drivers to access their music libraries, make calls and view maps on the console’s 7-inch LCD screen. The Alpine console will support the iPhone 5 and subsequent iPhone models and will permit voice commands. Various major global automakers are incorporating CarPlay into the infotainment systems on new and upcoming models. Pioneer is also rumored to be exploring adding CarPlay compatibility to aftermarket car audio and information systems.
Recruitment: The CEO of branding agency Wolff Olins Global is departing the company to take a position at Apple, AdAge reports. Karl Heiselman had been employed by Wolff Olins Global for more than a decade and had served as CEO since 2006. He previously served as a design contractor for Apple during the 1990’s. Heiselman will take an unspecified marketing communications role at the iPhone-maker. Apple declined to comment to AdAge about Heiselman’s new role at the company. Heiselman has also served as creative directors at Swiss watch-maker The Swatch Group. His hiring comes as Apple is widely expected to launch its own smartwatch this fall and as a number of recent rumors point to Apple increasing its in-house marketing team.
For more about the company, check out our previous Apple Rumors stories.