Only one new iPhone this year - analyst

Contradicts verdict of former vide-president Gore

Analyst Brian Blair of Wedge Partners has said that Apple will only launch one new iPhone this year, not two models as others have claimed.

The comments, reported by Apple Insider, were almost immediately contradicted by a statement made by former vice-president Al Gore at a conference in South Africa.

Gore, who sits on Apple's board, said that there would be "new iPhones" - plural - launched by the company in October.

Blair made his comments in a note to investors, insisting that the new iPhone would be fairly similar in design to the iPhone 4 but would have upgraded components including "an A5 processor and a higher resolution 8 MP camera with a small possibility of a larger 4-inch screen".

However, he makes no mention of a wider Home button, or curved edges and a tapered back, as some mockups have shown.

Another analyst that agrees with Blair is Ming-Chi Kuo of Concord Securities, who told Apple Insider he expected the new iPhone to look much like the iPhone 4 and have an improved antenna design.

But some analysts are firmly in the two new iPhones camp, including Mark Moskowitz of investment bank JP Morgan who said that a new 'iPhone 4-plus' may be targeted mainly at the Chinese market, with an iPhone 5 - that will either be based on the iPad 2's A5 processor or an A6 chip and will be matched up with 1GB of RAM for improved performace - that will be launched in other major territories.

We're expecting an official announcement on Tuesday 4 October, so we've less than a couple of weeks before we'll find out for sure. Hopefully.

Deutsche Bank's Chris Whitmore agrees, saying that the iPhone 4S could launch exclusively on pre-paid contracts.

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Ben Camm-Jones

Macworld U.K.

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