iPhone 5: What new features will it have?

It’s been widely reported that the iPhone 5 release date is set for September, but what do those in the know think will be under the bonnet of Apples’s new baby?

Wednesday 12 September. It's the one thing that gadgets gurus and smartphone sages seem to be able to agree on when it comes to the new iPhone - that it will be launched at an event Apple yesterday announced it is holding in San Francisco on that date. Previously, they guessed Thursday 13 September. Then Friday 21 September. Or was it the other way round?

While the launch date of the sixth version of Apple's aspirational phone - dubbed the iPhone 5 - may now be all but confirmed, what to expect from it is still subject to leaks from mobile networks and accessory companies, blurry photos of empty cases, mistranslations from south-east Asia and tall stories, although some are obviously taller than others.

Come with Broadbandchoices.co.uk as we dip into the vast palette of iPhone 5 rumours and attempt to paint a picture of what form the next Apple smartphone might take...

iPhone 5 screen

Well, the general consensus seems to be that the new iPhone screen will be ... bigger. You want more detail? Lordy. Well, Apple news and rumours website Mac Rumors goes with a 4in screen, but that's still nearly an inch smaller than one of its main rivals, the Samsung Galaxy S III, which boasts a monster 4.8in display...

iPhone 5 wireless charging

In June, Apple intellectual property blog Patently Apple reported the publication of 27 newly granted Apple patents, among them one for "an iOS [iPhone operating system] docking station based on inductive charging" - or, in other words, a dock that would charge a device wirelessly. Cue a mass of reports that you'll be able to charge the new iPhone 5 wirelessly.

Gadget news and reviews website Stuff UK is having none of it though, pointing out that "leaked" images of the iPhone 5 published days earlier by Japanese Apple blog Macotakara showed the new handset would have a new, smaller, dock connector, indicating that you'll not only still need a cable to charge it with, but that you'll need a new one. Unless, of course, you can charge it either with OR without a cable...

iPhone 5 camera

The iPhone 4S has an eight-megapixel rear-facing camera and a video graphics array (VGA) front-facing camera, but what will its successor be packing? Well, back in May, another Apple news and rumours website, AppleInsider, said the new iPhone's camera could have a "multi-point focusing system", meaning the user does not have to get the main subject of their photo in the middle of the frame in order to focus on it.

Not to be outdone, Mac Rumors reported in June that the rear-facing lens will again be 8Mp, but that it will be smaller in order to keep the iPhone 5 "ultra slim", while both Mac Rumors and 9to5Mac, another Apple news website, has said that the front-facing camera will move into the centre of the top of the new iPhone, making FaceTime, Apple's video calling app, easier to use.

All a bit tame, right? Well, back in March, Patently Apple reported that the company had developed a new camera that will enable iOS devices like, say, the iPhone 5, to take photos and record video in 3D...

iPhone 5 contactless technology

The new iPhone will incorporate near field communication (NFC) technology, allowing it to be used to pay for things just by waving it over a pad or device, like you can now do with some credit and debit cards, Taiwanese Apple blog 9to5Macreported last month. One day later, hardware reviews site AnandTech said this was "highly unlikely". D'oh...

iPhone 5 4G

After communications regulator Ofcom gave Everything Everywhere, the company that runs mobile networks Orange (www.Orange.co.uk) and T-Mobile, the go ahead to begin rolling out 4G, the next generation of mobile communications, from next week, tech and gadget news site Pocket-lint reported that the new iPhone will be able to take advantage of the fast internet speeds offered by the new technology.

Awesome! However, the new iPad, launched back in March, is 4G, but you won't be able to use it when 4G services become available in the UK, because they will use different radio frequencies to those in the US, which the new iPad was designed to work with. As technology news and reviews website TechRadar said: "Apple doesn't mind selling technology that the UK networks don't currently support"...

iPhone 5 earphones

You know how every iPod, iPhone and iPad comes with those instantly recognisable white earphones? Well, the ones that come with the iPhone 5 will look a little different, according to Vietnamese technology website Tinhte.vn. They'll probably still be white though...

iPhone 5 dock connector

Technology news website T3 reported EXCLUSIVELY last month that the new iPhone will have a "smaller 19-pin dock connector" - that's 11 whole pins less than the connector of the iPhone 4S, pin fans.

What does this mean? It means that you won't be able to use your current iPhone-compatible accessorises with it. So why the change? It "represents an opportunity for accessory vendors," said Pete Cunningham, analyst at independent technology industry analyst firm Canalys. Hmmm...

iPhone 5 specification

So there you have it, ladies and gentleman. The Apple iPhone 5 will be thinner and have a bigger screen, the same 8Mp camera - except not quite, as it's now 3D - the same earphones, except they look different, and a smaller dock connector with 11 fewer pins. It may be 4G, have NFC and charge wirelessly, but then again it's not likely. Clear now? Not really? Suppose you'll have to wait and see...

What do you want from the new iPhone and what are you expecting?

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