It’s Spring, When Rumors Sprout on a New iPhone Launch

It's that time again, when rumors about a new iPhone are pushing up through the noise. According to some news reports, the iPhone 6 is scheduled to be unveiled and launched in August, instead of the previously expected September date.

The Taiwan-based Economic Daily News reported Friday that, based on information from people with knowledge of what Apple intends to do, a new 4.7-inch iPhone 6 will be accompanied by the appearance of a larger, phablet-ish iPhone with a 5.5- or 5.6-inch display.

That larger iPhone, the publication said, will not be available until September. Reuters news service has previously reported that 4.7- and 5.5-inch iPhones will be released later this year. Currently, the iPhone's screen size is 4 inches.

'Super-Resolution' Patent Application

Meanwhile, some buzz is being generated about Apple's intention for the next generations of phone cameras.

A key member of Nokia's camera engineering team, Ari Partinen, has confirmed that he will be moving to Apple, beginning in June. And an Apple patent application was published on Thursday, as part of the normal patent approval process.

It covers "super-resolution based on optical image stabilization," where the tech giant envisions several, slightly differently angled images merging into a super-image.

However, that application's technology may not appear in this year's iPhone releases. As Apple Insider points out, the stabilization technology discussed in the application requires additional hardware, and rumors indicate that Apple is focused on digital stabilization in the near future. It is possible that digital stabilization and enhancement could also significantly increase the phone's picture-taking quality -- although, given the superb quality of many phone camera-taken images, one wonders at what point a non-expert's human eye will be able to recognize any further improvement.

Low-Hanging Fruit

Ramon Llamas, research analyst at industry research firm IDC, told us flatly that he expects the iPhone 6...

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