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Rumor: Alleged cheaper iPhone may feature U.S.-made chassis with "see-through" design

post #1 of 88
Thread Starter 
As rumors of an inexpensive iPhone model bound for a 2013 release gain momentum, fresh reports from upstream supply chain sources claim the purported handset's enclosure will be made of plastic by a company based in the U.S.

iPhone 3G
Apple's iPhone 3G and 3GS featured polycarbonate shell backings.


Citing people familiar with Apple's supply chain, the sometimes reliable DigiTimes reports the entry-level iPhone's chassis could be sourced from an unnamed U.S. electronic manufacturing service provider. According to these sources, the casing will use plastic instead of the current aluminum-and-glass theme seen on the iPhone 5.

The publication goes further, claiming that separate rumors point to a new design in which the internal metal sub-structure is visible through a "special design," alluding to a type of "see-through" aesthetic. While Apple has used Corning's Gorilla Glass as a backing to the iPhone 4 and 4S, the substrate has always been layered with opaque paint.

It remains unclear whether the supposed design will be adopted, but a "see-through" casing seems unlikely given the lengths to which Apple went to fight light leakage that negatively affected the iPhone 4's camera sensor.

Sources say the components required for the rumored handset are currently undergoing a validation process ahead of an expected launch date in the second half of 2013.

Monday's report elaborates on rumors from last week that proposed Apple would add an inexpensive handset to its lineup sometime this year. The rumors caused quite a stir with mainstream media outlets, which cited their own sources as saying the launch of a more affordable iPhone was imminent. In one case, Reuters withdrew a story that claimed Apple marketing chief Phil Schiller said his company is not in the business of making cheap, low-cost products after "substantial changes" were made to the original report.
post #2 of 88

Introducing the iPhone Mini:

 

post #3 of 88
iMac 15-year anniversary edition!
post #4 of 88

NOT SURE IF SERIOUS

 

"DigiTimes reports..."

 

HAHAHAHAH! Now I'm sure you're not.

"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

John C. Dvorak, 2007
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"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

John C. Dvorak, 2007
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post #5 of 88

This is being done to death enough that I almost believe it.

 

I don't like it at all, they certainly don't need to waste millions on crap when they can just cut the price of the actually good devices they already make, but whatever. 

Originally Posted by Slurpy

There's just a TINY chance that Apple will also be able to figure out payments. Oh wait, they did already… …and you’re already fucked.

 

Reply

Originally Posted by Slurpy

There's just a TINY chance that Apple will also be able to figure out payments. Oh wait, they did already… …and you’re already fucked.

 

Reply
post #6 of 88

Actually, the first thing I thought of was the mid-2000s mouse.  I still use mine as a backup, here on my desk.
 

Quality isn't expensive... it's priceless.

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Quality isn't expensive... it's priceless.

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post #7 of 88
{ = if content =*DigiTimes* ;
do Cmd-W;

end do;}


...or something like that
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post #8 of 88
I'm fairly certain this will never happen...

but wouldn't it be a little cool if Apple jammed a cell radio and bigger battery in an ipod nano w/iOS 6?
post #9 of 88
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

This is being done to death enough that I almost believe it.

I don't like it at all, they certainly don't need to waste millions on crap when they can just cut the price of the actually good devices they already make, but whatever. 

Next thing they'll say is that the new Mac Pro will have its case made of plastic in order to cut down on the shipping costs. Gotta stay away from these DT articles.
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post #10 of 88
Quote:
Originally Posted by DeanSolecki View Post

I'm fairly certain this will never happen...

but wouldn't it be a little cool if Apple jammed a cell radio and bigger battery in an ipod nano w/iOS 6?

I don't think they'll do that; the iPhone has a radio in it but they didn't make any software for it.

FM radio for iPhone!, FM radio for iPhone!
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post #11 of 88
Quote:
Originally Posted by Suddenly Newton View Post

NOT SURE IF SERIOUS

 

"DigiTimes reports..."

 

HAHAHAHAH! Now I'm sure you're not.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilBoogie View Post


Next thing they'll say is that the new Mac Pro will have its case made of plastic in order to cut down on the shipping costs. Gotta stay away from these DT articles.

 

What got me was this line:

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

...the sometimes reliable DigiTimes reports...

 

When has DT ever even been sometimes reliable?

post #12 of 88
Quote:
Originally Posted by DeanSolecki View Post

I'm fairly certain this will never happen...

but wouldn't it be a little cool if Apple jammed a cell radio and bigger battery in an ipod nano w/iOS 6?

I personally think the current Nano form factor should have been for an iPhone and the iPod Nano should have remained a wrist watch. 

post #13 of 88
Originally Posted by PhilBoogie View Post
FM radio for iPhone!, FM radio for iPhone!

 

~Thirty inches, eh? I have a head-worn accessory from, oh, 199…8? that would beg to differ. I'll find it sometime tomorrow.


Originally Posted by blackbook View Post
When has DT ever even been sometimes reliable?

 

Well, in the past they've stated that Apple will make new products. 

 

… So… so they got that right.

Originally Posted by Slurpy

There's just a TINY chance that Apple will also be able to figure out payments. Oh wait, they did already… …and you’re already fucked.

 

Reply

Originally Posted by Slurpy

There's just a TINY chance that Apple will also be able to figure out payments. Oh wait, they did already… …and you’re already fucked.

 

Reply
post #14 of 88
Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilBoogie View Post


I don't think they'll do that; the iPhone has a radio in it but they didn't make any software for it.

FM radio for iPhone!, FM radio for iPhone!

He's saying a cell radio, meaning the iPod Nano would make phone calls, text, 3g, etc.

post #15 of 88
Originally Posted by mrrodriguez View Post
He's saying a cell radio, meaning the iPod Nano would make phone calls, text, 3g, etc.

 

Oh, was he thinking FM radio? Because there's already one in the iPod nano. I thought he was just offering an example of the opposite; putting cellular tech in an iPod vs activating FM in an iPhone… but now I'm not sure.

Originally Posted by Slurpy

There's just a TINY chance that Apple will also be able to figure out payments. Oh wait, they did already… …and you’re already fucked.

 

Reply

Originally Posted by Slurpy

There's just a TINY chance that Apple will also be able to figure out payments. Oh wait, they did already… …and you’re already fucked.

 

Reply
post #16 of 88
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

 

Oh, was he thinking FM radio? Because there's already one in the iPod nano. I thought he was just offering an example of the opposite; putting cellular tech in an iPod vs activating FM in an iPhone… but now I'm not sure.

The guy he was quoting was saying how cool it would be to put a cell radio and iOS 6 on an iPod Nano. He thought the guy meant fm radio, but I was just pointing to the fact he probably meant putting cell phone communication frequency chips to make the iPod Nano be able to make phone calls, access the web, send text messages.

 

Basically the guy was thinking it would be cool if instead of making a cheap iPhone, they make an iPhone Nano. A tiny little device that cost as little as the Nano, but it's a portable music player, has some features of iOS, has GPS for the Nike running program, etc.

 

It's actually not a bad thought.

post #17 of 88
Quote:
Originally Posted by blackbook View Post

When has DT ever even been sometimes reliable?

 

The only thing worse than a boy who cries "wolf!" is a boy who cries "wolf!" sometimes.

"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

John C. Dvorak, 2007
Reply

"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

John C. Dvorak, 2007
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post #18 of 88
Did I dream that phill Schiller came out and said apple wouldn't make a cheap iphone. They didnt make a cheap ipad. The mini is still expensive. Why is this still a story??
post #19 of 88

Calling DigiTimes sometimes reliable is like calling an alcoholic sometimes sober.

post #20 of 88
Quote:
Originally Posted by mrrodriguez View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

Oh, was he thinking FM radio? Because there's already one in the iPod nano. I thought he was just offering an example of the opposite; putting cellular tech in an iPod vs activating FM in an iPhone… but now I'm not sure.
The guy he was quoting was saying how cool it would be to put a cell radio and iOS 6 on an iPod Nano. He thought the guy meant fm radio, but I was just pointing to the fact he probably meant putting cell phone communication frequency chips to make the iPod Nano be able to make phone calls, access the web, send text messages.

Basically the guy was thinking it would be cool if instead of making a cheap iPhone, they make an iPhone Nano. A tiny little device that cost as little as the Nano, but it's a portable music player, has some features of iOS, has GPS for the Nike running program, etc.

It's actually not a bad thought.

I don't think Apple will go there ("we don't want to go there, so we don't" SJ on pr0n) because they create differentiating products. Yes, there's an iPod with radio, something we might never thought they would do. Then again, the 2nd FF iPod reduced it's storage size whilst hardly becoming cheaper. No one would think it would sell, yet it sold better than the 1st FF.

A radio on in iPhone? I don't think it'll happen. I do think that people who want that think that will happen, but it needs an antenna added.

The thought of an iPod nano with cellular options is a no-go, if history is any indication on where Apple shoots the puck to.
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post #21 of 88
DigiTimes is such a fountain of misinformation one would almost think it was run by Rob Enderle.
post #22 of 88
Quote:
Originally Posted by blackbook View Post

When has DT ever even been sometimes reliable?

The iPad mini, long before anyone else, and precise 7.85" display dimensions too. Also the iPad 4 with exact details of changes that were correct. Both at the beginning of last year.

post #23 of 88

I think this rumor has some validity to it. When the iPad Mini was a rumor, people thought the same thing because of what Steve Jobs said. Now the same is happening with this rumor, people are getting hung up on what Schiller said. These guys used their words carefully.

 

Phil didn't say no, he didn't deny the rumors, he stated that Apple doesn't make cheap products. Cheap in this definition is not in price. The lowest priced Apple product at the moment is the iPod Shuffle, at $49. The iPod Touch is $199, and it closely resembels the iPhone in terms of usability, only difference is it doesn't have a cell radio.

 

The point is there is a market for a LOW COST phone, and if Apple can deliver a phone that can access the web, access facebook and twitter, and integrates with the Apple ecosystem, then the phone will be a winner. It's a stepping stone for an iPhone.

 

I remember when I got an iPod Touch because I couldn't afford an iPhone. I think some people in third world countries might feel the same, where maybe they can't afford an iPhone yet, but they can get the highest quality "budget" phone, the iPhone mini (or nano)

post #24 of 88
For some strange reason you make a good point, Mr. Rodiguez

edit: there are iPhone nano mockups everywhere




Edited by PhilBoogie - 1/14/13 at 10:35pm
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post #25 of 88
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

According to these sources, the casing will use plastic instead of the current aluminum-and-glass theme seen on the iPhone 5.

The publication goes further, claiming that separate rumors point to a new design in which the internal metal sub-structure is visible through the plastic enclosure, alluding to a type of "see-through" aesthetic.

Does DT mean this?

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post #26 of 88
I'll go to the end of absurd and call it, ``TRANSPARENT ALUMINUM.'' They'll call it their Greenpeace Model and it'll allow one to fold spacetime in the 5th dimension.
post #27 of 88
Quote:
Originally Posted by blackbook View Post

Introducing the iPhone Mini:

 

Good idea! Not sure if you are being sarcastic, but it makes sense to me. An iphone with colored plastic would be new, 'cool', and cheaper to make, while still being a quality product (iphone5 screen with iphone4 internals). Also, it would preserve (or even enhance) the elegance and premium feel of the iphone5s.

   

Reply

   

Reply
post #28 of 88
Quote:
Originally Posted by blackbook View Post

 

 

What got me was this line:

 

 

 

When has DT ever even been sometimes reliable?

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by retroneo View Post

The iPad mini, long before anyone else, and precise 7.85" display dimensions too. Also the iPad 4 with exact details of changes that were correct. Both at the beginning of last year.


 And how many times was DT wrong?

"A common mistake that people make when trying to design something completely foolproof is to underestimate the ingenuity of complete fools." Douglas Adams

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post #29 of 88
Quote:
Originally Posted by mdriftmeyer View Post

I'll go to the end of absurd and call it, ``TRANSPARENT ALUMINUM.'' They'll call it their Greenpeace Model and it'll allow one to fold spacetime in the 5th dimension.

 

http://www.ohgizmo.com/2012/05/09/did-you-know-that-transparent-aluminum-exists/

post #30 of 88
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sector7G View Post

Did I dream that phill Schiller came out and said apple wouldn't make a cheap iphone. They didnt make a cheap ipad. The mini is still expensive. Why is this still a story??

 

Because AppleInsider can't let a DigiTimes rumor go unrepeated.

"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

John C. Dvorak, 2007
Reply

"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

John C. Dvorak, 2007
Reply
post #31 of 88

 

Already knew a variant existed, but alas its lattice structure doesn't compare to the science fiction of Star Trek IV. Imagine the press statement talking about the ability to withstand the volumetric force per cubic centimeter akin to that in ST IV by demoing its ability on a scaled down geometry with two sumos standing on an apparatus that applies their combined line of force on the phone, without any compression issues and the phone still dialing.

 

Meanwhile, the WSJ complains that the screen size is too small and shortages of the material makes it a long waiting period for potential customers.

post #32 of 88
The idea of a see-through plastic back is so weird that it has the ring of plausibility about it. Did they say colors this time too?

It would allow the use of plastic for the back without saying "cheap."

Too bad DigiTimes spilled the beans on this one. They'll be working overtime at Samsung's plastic case division.

This is why Apple would source the plastic from a trusted U.S. supplier: better secrecy.
Edited by Flaneur - 1/15/13 at 12:37am
post #33 of 88
Quote:
Originally Posted by Flaneur View Post

It would allow the use of plastic for the back without saying "cheap."

I agree, though am afraid trolls will call it "Tss sheep!"
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post #34 of 88
Yes, there will be mockery.

"Eye candy for iSheep."

"Apple has just one word for you: Plastics."

and

"Apple jumps the shark."
post #35 of 88
Quote:
Originally Posted by Flaneur View Post

Yes, there will be mockery.

"Eye candy for iSheep."

"Apple has just one word for you: Plastics."

and

"Apple jumps the shark."

Good ones! Keep 'em coming! Also, post them in the Rules of the Troll thread. Too funny.
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post #36 of 88
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

This is being done to death enough that I almost believe it.

 

I don't like it at all, they certainly don't need to waste millions on crap when they can just cut the price of the actually good devices they already make, but whatever. 

TS, I don't think it's that easy. One thing they would not want to do is to risk lowering their margins. If you're talking about a phone for India, for example .... how could you release an existing model cheap enough to compete and not have it cannibalize other iPhone models. That would be walking a very tight line ... not sure it would be worth it. just my 2¢ worth.

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post #37 of 88

BAHAHAHAHA, now that's the funniest thing i've seen in quite a while... why don't these ANALysts get that Apple doesn't do CHEAP?  If you can't afford an iPhone get a Droid, it's that simple. I mean, you can get a 4 for 99 cents.. a 4s for $99... how much cheaper do they need them to be?  I know your paying for it in the plan but really.  

post #38 of 88
Quote:
Originally Posted by newbee View Post

TS, I don't think it's that easy. One thing they would not want to do is to risk lowering their margins. If you're talking about a phone for India, for example .... how could you release an existing model cheap enough to compete and not have it cannibalize other iPhone models. That would be walking a very tight line ... not sure it would be worth it. just my 2¢ worth.

Also, I can't see them issuing a glass-backed phone for the hard-working masses. Too uptown, too fragile.

Polycarbonate is bullet-proof if it's thick enough.
post #39 of 88
Quote:
Originally Posted by ytseman3 View Post

BAHAHAHAHA, now that's the funniest thing i've seen in quite a while... why don't these ANALysts get that Apple doesn't do CHEAP?  If you can't afford an iPhone get a Droid, it's that simple. I mean, you can get a 4 for 99 cents.. a 4s for $99... how much cheaper do they need them to be?  I know your paying for it in the plan but really.  

Do you have any sort of cognitive problem?

Do you see a 450 € 2 year old phone (4) where most people earn 500 to 1000€ per month as "cheap"?

 

Anyway, I don't like this idea. Apple's "problem" is related with screen size (they would sell a lot of 5 inch phones) and stupid people that think that the iphone is less powerful than most other phones because it is dual core. Basically that's it.

post #40 of 88
For this to make sense, at least to me, the introduction of this cheaper iPhone should happen this summer, alongside the introduction of the iPhone 5S. And furthermore, the introduction will introduce a new iPhone strategy for Apple whereby as they bring out their new high end model each year they drop all older models of the iPhone completely and have the cheaper iPhone available alongside it.

So at any one time you've got the 1 latest and greatest in a few storage sizes, and one latest and cheapest in one small size. This would simplify the product lineup for people, in my mind. Do you want the 5S or the cheaper model? If you want the cheaper model, here you go, it's an 8GB phone made using clear plastic so you don't even need to choose a colour. If you want the 5S you can choose from black and white and 16-64 GB. Do you want to spend as little money on an iPhone as possible and yet still get a new iPhone? Or do you want the latest and greatest?
Citing unnamed sources with limited but direct knowledge of the rumoured device - Comedy Insider (Feb 2014)
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Citing unnamed sources with limited but direct knowledge of the rumoured device - Comedy Insider (Feb 2014)
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