iPhone 5 rumor roundup

The iPhone 5 rumors culminated today, 12 September, with Apple's announcement of the iPhone 5 with bigger screen and 4G LTE. Read CNET's iPhone 5 coverage.

Kent German Former senior managing editor / features
Kent was a senior managing editor at CNET News. A veteran of CNET since 2003, he reviewed the first iPhone and worked in both the London and San Francisco offices. When not working, he's planning his next vacation, walking his dog or watching planes land at the airport (yes, really).
Lynn La Senior Editor / Reviews - Phones
Lynn La covers mobile reviews and news. She previously wrote for The Sacramento Bee, Macworld and The Global Post.
Kent German
Lynn La
29 min read
Watch this: Inside Scoop: Few surprises with iPhone 5 unveiling

Editors' note (September 12, 2012): It's official, folks. The iPhone 5 is for real. Our first impressions, plus additional full coverage.

Well, it's been a long time coming. Tomorrow, Apple is expected to finally announce the next iPhone. Whether it's going to be named the iPhone 5 or "the new iPhone," have a bigger screen, or come with seven arms sticking out of it, we've sifted (and sometimes trudged) through months and months of rumors that will either be confirmed or done away with come tomorrow. As archivers of the iPhone rumor mill, it has been entertaining, but we're looking forward to a brief moment of peace until a whole new batch of rumors comes out for the next iteration. Until then, remember to join us during our live blog tomorrow as the iPhone specs are unveiled and the bets get settled. (Who put $5 on NFC, anyone, anyone?)

Tune in Wednesday starting at 9 a.m. PT for our Apple iPhone event live blog.

After unveiling a marginally improved iPhone 4S in 2011 instead of a radically different iPhone 5, Apple has returned to its development labs to cook up (no pun intended) the next iteration of its popular phone. In 2012, we're fairly certain that the real iPhone 5 will roll out of Apple's gates and that the device should be a bigger leap forward than the 4S was.

That's why after taking some time off at the end of last year, we've resurrected CNET's iPhone 5 rumor roundup to cover the new tidbits from 2012. So join us again in watching the rumor mill churn. We'll add to it until we get the real thing; please let us know if we've left any gossip out.

See also CNET's iPad Mini rumor roundup and Apple HDTV rumor roundup.

September 10, 2012
Those previously mentioned plugs may be the size of Micro-USB
Not satisfied with just posting pictures of the supposedly new iPhone 5 plugs, Nowhereelse is now reporting that these updated dock connectors may be the same size as a Micro-USB port. In addition to the new phone sporting the smaller port, other future devices, like the next iPad, will include it too.

September 8, 2012
New pictures, new plugs
Leaked images from French blog Nowhereelse suggest that the new iPhone skipped out on the Rogaine and got new plugs (har har!). The picture is consistent with ongoing rumors that the new handset will do away with the 30-pin dock and sport a smaller port instead.

Watch this: Features you want in iPhone 5

September 7, 2012
Again with the 4G LTE speculation
The Wall Street Journal, citing "people familiar with the matter," claims that the new iPhone will be equipped with 4G LTE capabilities. Though the iPhone 4S was expected to come with the technology, it sported the 3G-ish technology HSPA+ instead. The third-generation iPad, however, debuted with 4G LTE five months after the 4S, when it was offered in different carrier models.

The new iPhone will debut with the same price as always
9to5Mac reported that the iPhone 5 may be initially offered at the same price as the iPhone 4S when it debuted. According to a "parts code matrix" that the publication posted, the device will come with the familiar $199 to $399 price tag. So if you're worried that you'll have to pay more for the new iteration, you can relax...for now.

More evidence corroborates Sept. 21 release date
Rumors about a September 21 release date for the iPhone 5 receive additional support from multiple outlets, including GottaBeMobile and Geeky Gadgets. MacRumors reported that FedEx is expecting a "surge volume" from September 21 to 24, piling onto the projected-date-rumors mountain as well.

September 5, 2012
Another day, another photo leak
An online repair site, iResQ, published a leaked photo of the purported iPhone 5 next to the iPhone 4S. The pictures show a thinner device, one without the look of a back plate seen on previous models. The picture is consistent with ongoing rumors that the new iPhone will be slimmer.

That dock adapter you're going to have to buy will probably be from Apple
As rumors of a smaller iPhone dock swirl around, iLounge reported that Apple has kept third-party accessory makers in the dark about its specs, essentially calling dibs on an adapter that users can buy to accommodate their old chargers with the new iPhone. This is similar to Apple's MagSafe adapter, which costs $9.99, and modifies previous-generation chargers to work with the company's updated line of notebooks.

It'll probably sell like hotcakes
To no one's surprise, the new iPhone is expected to sell well -- like, really well. An analyst from Piper Jaffray, Gene Munster, estimates that within its first week of release, 6 million to 10 million units will be sold. For the full month of September, 26 million units are projected to sell. Another analyst from JPMorgan, Mark Moskowitz, speculates that 168 million iPhones will be sold in fiscal 2013, a bump up from its previous estimate of 147.4 million.

September 4, 2012
It's official: Apple's holding an event September 12
Apple sent out its official invitations today for a previously speculated-about September 12 event. The event will start at 10 a.m. PT in San Francisco. The invitation includes the words, "It's almost here," followed by a shadowy number "5" underneath (which bodes well for the rumored "iPhone 5" name, instead of "new iPhone"). Though no further details have been released, additional rumors surmise that the device itself will go on sale nine days after the event, on September 21.

September 2, 2012
iPhone 5 mock-ups hit IFA
While there were plenty of real products at the IFA trade show in Berlin, there were also mockups of ones that did not exist -- including one for an iPhone 5. Following many of the rumored specs, the device was taller, with a headphone jack on the bottom, and a two-toned back. Shortly after photos and videos of that device turned up from the show, a video of a purported prototype version went up on YouTube (below).