Updates to this story
The iPhone 4 has only been out a few months, but already there is speculation about the next incarnation which some believe will hit the shelves as soon as December. If that was not enough to get fanboys salivating all over their shiny touchscreens, some details about the next iPad have been revealed, set for release in the first quarter of 2011.
It has been reported by TechCrunch that Apple has ordered several million Qualcomm CDMA chipsets, giving rise to speculation that the next iPhone will be CDMA-based. In fact, the much rumoured Apple partnership with Verizon after AT&T lost its exclusivity on the iPhone may mean a Verizon CDMA-based model some time in December or January, making it unique from the GSM-based AT&T handset.
It is not clear if this version of the iPhone will contain a fix for the antenna problems that have plagued the iPhone 4 and marred the brand's image, but if Apple has time to change the chipset then perhaps it might consider the ability to actually make and receive calls a worthy investment.
Meanwhile, the next iPad is set to look pretty much the same but it should have some meatier kit under the bonnet than the current model. The iPad currently has a 1GHz ARM Cortex-A8 processor and a meagre 256MB of RAM, less than many smartphones, including the iPhone 4.
The iPad 2 is expected to contain an ARM Cortex-A9 processor and an upgrade to 512MB of RAM, but for a 2011 model that seems woefully inadequate, particularly for the price. There are smartphones on the market that already beat that spec, with even more powerful ones expected by the end of the year, not to mention what we can expect throughout 2011 by Apple rivals.
Maybe it's just us, but surely a tablet computer should be that bit more powerful than a phone. For all its claims at “innovation”, Apple appears to be playing catchup in terms of processor speed and memory for its fruity devices. But with usability and branding it's still got the upper hand, for now.