iPhone 5 rumor rollup for the week ending Aug. 24

As summer wanes, the iOSphere this week unhesitatingly dredged up the most tenuous and implausible allusions, inferences, hints, and of course teases for iPhone 5. All in good fun.

This week: how Facebook's new iOS app reveals stuff about iPhone 5 even though it doesn't; new iPhone 5 parts in a video show us exactly what the iPhone 5 will look like; shortage of other parts mean there won't be enough phones to go around; purchase predictions; and The New Dock at last.

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"At this point, I think it's safe to say that we know exactly what the iPhone 5 is going to look like. Apple won't be able to surprise us with the hardware come September 5 [or 12?], but they could still wow us with some impressive new software."     -- Zach Walton, WebProNews, who apparently believes almost every unsourced, unverified and indeed unverifiable, iPhone 5 rumor on the Web.


iPhone 5 "teased" in new iOS Facebook app ... somehow

It was widely reported this week that Facebook was releasing its first iOS Facebook app. But apparently only Andrew Dodson, at iPhoneTouch.Blorge, discerned that the new app revealed hidden things about iPhone 5.

The actual headline is: "iPhone 5, iOS 6 teased with recent Facebook app update."

Dodson is a bit of a tease himself, because he doesn't actually explain what it is that is supposedly being teased. Or even what "teased" means in this context.

Apple had announced in June that iOS 6, which will run on the iPhone 5, will be integrated with Facebook features and functions; and by the end of the month, there was convincing evidence that Facebook was putting the final touches on a brand new, native iOS app expressly for iPhone, to replace the HTML5 app, "wrapped" in shell written in Objective C.

This week, Facebook officially announced the new app is available on the iTunes App Store, as noted by, among many others, AllThingsD's Mike Isaac, who describes the existing app's performance as "embarrassing, considering Facebook is the most installed iOS application in the entire world."

Facebook's blog has a post with a load of technical information on details such as how they optimized the app for performance.

There's no mention by Isaac or by Facebook of iPhone 5 or even of iOS 6. And the new app runs on existing iPhones with the current iOS release.

Yet iPhoneTouch.Blorge's Dodson insists this "much-needed update to the Facebook app for iOS gives us a glimpse into how we'll use the popular social network on the iPhone 5 and iOS 6."

"How does this [new Facebook app] relate to the iPhone 5, Apple's highly anticipated next-generation iPhone?" Dodson asks, obviously rhetorically.

Eventually he gets around to offering an answer. "This update needed to happen because the iPhone 5 is expected to be the fastest smartphone on the planet upon release," Dodson declares. "It's powered with a quad-core A6 processor and 1 GB of RAM. It doesn't need a buggy Facebook app slowing it down."

Setting aside the belief in the mythical quad-core iPhone 5 processor, Dodson's argument is that Facebook was so appalled at the possibility that its existing iOS app would slow down the fastest smartphone on the planet, despite the "quad-core A6 processor," that it decided to create a new app. Unless, it was Apple who was so appalled by that possibility, and it strong-armed Facebook into creating a new app.

The implausibility of this argument is breathtaking. And even if Dodson was correct, there's nothing in the new app and nothing in Dodson's post that reveals, or even teases, anything about iPhone 5.

iPhone 5 glass panels flex cables and stuff show differences

A smartphone repair outfit based in Columbia, S.C., posted a YouTube video of what it claims are a set of iPhone 5 components, including black and white glass panels, 8-pin dock connector flex cable assembly, and two other flex cable assemblies.

Despite, or perhaps because of, the fact that there is no source whatever given for the components, or how the company obtained them, the video had racked up almost 240,000 views by early Friday morning.

The video, comparing the "new" parts with those of the iPhone 4S, was posted by SmartPhone Medic, which focused originally on smartphone (including iPhone) repairs for the Columbia area, but has since branched out nationwide.

The uncritical acceptance of the video is astonishing, even for the iOSphere.

"Repair firm SmartPhone Medic has just posted a new video comparing several parts from the next-generation iPhone to their counterparts from the iPhone 4S," writes Eric Slivka, at MacRumors. "[W]hile all of these parts have been seen previously, the video offers another good look at what changes can be expected for the next-generation iPhone."

Zach Walton at WebProNews goes even further. "At this point, I think it's safe to say that we know exactly what the iPhone 5 is going to look like," he writes. "Apple won't be able to surprise us with the hardware come September 5 [though nearly everyone else expects Sept. 12], but they could still wow us with some impressive new software."

It turns out that SmartPhone Medic itself doesn't quite share Walton's and Slivka's assurance. How do we know this? Because PC Magazine's Chloe Albanesius called the repair company and asked them. You know, like real reporters do.

"When asked, a SmartPhone Medic spokesman said 'the parts in the video are from a very reliable source that we have worked with for years. They have been very accurate when releasing early parts to us in the past, but obviously we cannot say 100 percent that they are indeed the parts for the new iPhone. Apple is very good at protecting [their] parts/devices until their launch, despite what people may think. It is very difficult to acquire them.'"

According to the unnamed spokesman, "The quality, build and markings suggest that they [the parts shown in the video] are accurate."

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