4GB iPhone coming next week?

Apple's Worldwide Developers Conference is just under a week away, and there are more indications that Apple will unveil the next generation of its iPhone device. Rumors out late yesterday point to a 4GB iPhone model that could be an actual $99 iPhone, and the possibility of four different versions of Apple's fabled wonder machine.

Here's what's going on:

Fido leaks

Late yesterday, a roadmap that is purportedly from Canadian iPhone carrier Fido contains a slide featuring a 4GB iPhone the company will offer for $99 with a three-year contract, according to BoyGeniusRerport. The phone featured in the slide is not the actual product, so there are no details of its physical appearance. But according to the text, the 4GB iPhone's features include QuadBand GSM, Tri-band HSDPA, a 2MP camera, and video chat.

While video chat may seem too good to be true, it does add more credence to the supposed iPhone 4G spare parts discovered last week on the Web site of Chinese parts supplier China OnTrade. According to photographs on OnTrade's site, the front bezel for the new iPhone has enough space near the earpiece to install a front-facing camera.

But then again, iChat for the iPhone is one of those fanboy dream features that are just a little too far-fetched to be true. It's entirely possible Apple could unveil video chat for the iPhone, but I seriously doubt this feature is coming. I hope I'm wrong.

PCS Type Review Certification Board

Adding more fuel to the 4GB fire, Engadget is reporting information from one of its sources that the PCS Type Review Certification Board just approved Apple's application for four different iPhone models including a 4GB, 8GB, 16GB, and 32GB version. The PTCRB is a standards board for mobile GSM devices that are to be deployed on North American cellular networks like AT&T's.

More Reckless Assumptions

So if Apple did go from offering one iPhone flavor to four, what would the price tags look like? Well, if I had to guess I'd say it would look something like this:

4GB $99 8GB $129 16GB $299 32GB $399

Those numbers are loosely based on what Apple charges for its wide range of iPod models with a dose of present and past iPhone prices mixed in for good measure. But before we start getting our hopes up, let's remember that today's rumors are far from certain, and we will never really know what Apple's up to until the WWDC keynote address on Monday, June 8, at 10 a.m. PT.

However, taking into account the 4GB rumors, last week's 32GB iPhone rumors and yesterday's reports of dwindling iPhone supplies, it sure looks like Apple is not only getting set to release a new iPhone, but will introduce more than one model. Well, that's the rumor anyway.

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Ian Paul

PC World (US online)
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