According to the latest rumors and speculation from the Wall Street Journal, Apple is planning on making smart-phones accessible to more of the market by developing a new line of less-expensive iPhones and a complete overhaul of the software services for the devices. In the fast-growing smart-phone market, Apple is intent on making it grow even faster.
According to the Wall Street Journal, one of the people who saw the first prototype of the new phone late last year, said that it is intended for sale along with and not as a replacement for Apple’s existing line of products. This ‘voyeur’ also indicated that the new device would be about half the size of the iPhone4, the model now on sale.
The iPhone Nano – codenamed N97 – is expected to cost about half the price of the standard iPhones. Apple plans to cut the price of the Nano iDevice by losing some memory, which is the most expensive component of the current model – around 25% according to ‘iSuppli’ estimates.
‘Macrumors‘ goes further and says:
By some memory we mean ALL the memory. The iPhone Nano will have no memory for on-board storage of media. It will have only enough memory to buffer media streamed from the cloud.
By reducing the need for significant on-board storage on the new iDevice, Apple need to find a way to improve the availability of its on-line service – the report does go on to mention that work is going ahead on the ‘MobileMe’ service with the possibility that it might become a free service. Rumors do have a habit of becoming true – sometimes.
But is does raise the question – what will happen to the successful App Store? Applications depend heavily on locally stored content, and will require significant modifications to be able to run from the cloud. These applications account for the popularity of the iDevices, so Apple might be shooting themselves in the foot – or do they have something up their sleeve and it is still too early to reveal, even as a rumor?