Apple's new CEO Tim Cook, and senior execs Phil Schiller and Scott Forstall just revealed all we need to know about the iPhone 5 and what was rumored or expected to be a suite of new Apple hardware and software products and tweaks. Some of what we thought was going to happen happened. Some of it, for reasons we'll understand later, didn't. Some of what we didn't know was going to happen also happened. Here's the summary:
It seems that the leaked parts we've seen, which commenters noted looked more compatible with an upgraded iPhone 4 design than anything radically new, really were for the 4S.
4S Name In Store Inventories—True
We should've paid attention to what apparently was genuine Apple "leaky" data. No iPhone 5 info showed up in an Apple-sourced inventory leak, even if partner store systems weren't so future-aware.
All those hundreds of iPhone 5 cases, catering for the slick tapered, all-aluminum iPhone 5 with a 4-inch screen and an enlarged home button will go to waste. Or perhaps they won't, as there seems to be too much momentum behind this shape for it to be entirely without a grain of truth. Maybe we'll see this shape in mid-2012?
White iPod Touch—True
As expected, courtesy of a few leaked white parts. It's possibly the last update to the Touch in its current iteration, however—as a 3G-free model?
If Apple got to a late-stage design prototype for the redesigned iPhone 5, it's entirely plausible the firm decided to pull the unit and minimize its losses. Evidence that they've done this before is all over the place, from cameras in the iPad protoypes to leaked information. But since we don't know, this is just speculation.
More Tunes Please—True
Apple did just expand its iTunes store offering to more EU nations.
iPhone Up To 64GB—True
This one proved true, for a chunky $399 price tag on a two-year contract.
No iPhone 5—True
Damping the hope of many folks expecting a radical new iPhone design, there is no iPhone 5. Yet.
Steve Jobs To Turn Up—False
Steve, probably for highly personal reasons, didn't show.
Apple didn't mention the tech, and although it's plausible it may actually be built in, ready to be activated with a future update, it seems unlikely.
What does all this prove? It proves we absolutely can't predict the machinations of one of the biggest and most successful companies of all time, because some of the rumors were true and some false, on both the "good" and "bad" side of the story subjectively speaking. All of Apple's cloak-and-dagger secrecy systems really must have been working in overdrive until now... Although this does leave us wondering if Apple's expert manipulation of hype hasn't gone slightly astray this time.