Likely offsetting an earlier note suggesting Apple’s run may soon slow, a new report on Monday suggests that the Cupertino-based technology giant is reportedly preparing to launch a redesigned iPhone handset in the third quarter this year, featuring a 4-inch display and a sleek new unibody case. While meeting with supply chain players in China, Topeka Capital Markets analyst Brian White received indications that Apple’s next iPhone is going to be a completely new device. “The buzz around the new iPhone 5 is growing in Asia and speculation around the timing of the launch has begun,” White, who raised his price target on Apple stock to $1,001 last week, wrote in a note to investors. Read on for more.
“In our view, this will be the most significant iPhone upgrade with a four-inch screen and a new, sleek look that we believe will require a Unibody case,” White said. “This new, sleek look will be the most important reason that consumers decide to upgrade to the iPhone 5, while we believe the addition of 4G will also attract buyers of the new device. We believe the iPhone 5 ramp for the December quarter could be extraordinary, dwarfing previous launches and driving the stock closer to our $1,001 price target.”
White believes that preliminary component production for Apple’s next-generation iPhone could begin in June, and he expects the phone to launch in August or September. An earlier report citing a Foxconn executive suggested that Apple’s new iPhone will launch in October, and BGR exclusively reported late last year that Apple plans to release a new iPhone with a completely redesigned antenna system this fall.