Apple is always a popular subject amongst market analysts, and this week is no exception, as we have two predictions to pay attention to. Or not, as the case may be. First up is Katy Huberty, who works for Morgan Stanley, and the second is Ming-chi Kuo of KGI Securities. Both have been chatting about Apple’s plans for the near future, but one is more positive than the other.
Apparently, Huberty has recently spent some time with Apple management and in a note to investors, has said the company may be planning something special for its Worldwide Developer Conference this year. What could it be? Well, Huberty reckons it’ll be a, “killer app,” and mentions both a mobile payment system and a streaming music service.
Neither of these are new rumors, and if we’re honest, aren’t all that killer. An Apple streaming music service has been discussed for sometime, and popped up in the news earlier this week, as Apple was rumored to be signing contracts with several large record labels. Huberty speculates Apple could choose a, “Freemium” pricing model for its iRadio – where the basic package would be downloaded for free, but in-app purchases would be required to unlock more extensive features.
Apple has also been linked with mobile payments, most likely facilitated with NFC, before. Wireless payments using a smartphone is a logistical nightmare, and although many have argued that if anyone can get it right, it’s Apple; this has yet to be proven. For mobile payments to be, “killer,” Apple will need to introduce its system globally, something that seems unlikely.
Unofficial Apple products have been reportedly delayed
But what about the iPhone 5S and other new Apple hardware? While Huberty says the iPhone 5S and a budget iPhone will arrive this year, KGI’s Ming-chi Kuo says neither will arrive very soon. Despite rumors indicating we’ll get the new phones during the summer, the analyst believes problems with production will force a late-third quarter release instead.
The iPhone 5S is supposedly being plagued by problems with integrating a fingerprint scanner – he says the black and white coating is affecting performance – while the low-cost iPhone’s plastic shell is proving difficult to manufacture. The rumored iPad Mini 2’s Retina display panel is also said to be causing problems. At this time, none of these products are official, so we’re dealing with speculation concerning devices which may not ever be sold (although it does seem unlikely).
As for WWDC, we’re still waiting for Apple to open registration for its usually incredibly popular developer get-together, but it’s expected to be held around June 10 for a duration of four days. It’s here where we have traditionally been introduced to the next version of iOS, which has debuted on a new iPhone later in the year.