What To Expect At Apple’s Fall iPod (& Maybe iPhone) Event

Every year Apple holds its Fall media event to showcase the newest iPods and iTunes features. This year the iPhone 5/4S may make an appearance and the iTunes store might be overhauled with HD content – here’s what you need to know.

The iPhone 4S or iPhone 5

This rumor has only gained traction after Apple neglected any hardware updates during its annual WWDC conference. Instead, Apple focused on iCloud, OS X and iOS 5 giving the mobile OS a ship date of fall. Now that’s where the next generation iPhone rumors really ramp up – Fall is when Apple updates the iPod family and has introduced a new generation of iPod Touch every year since its debut in 2007 with the newest iPhone preceding it by a few months.

Introducing two new iOS devices is monumental in its own right. The iPod Touch and iPhone often command a good chunk of presentation time and are starting to become the highlight of the iPod family. Just how revolutionary these updates are has caused a rift in the Apple Blog-o-sphere. Many rumors point to minor upgrades for the iPhone dubbed the iPhones 4S (a nod to the speed bumped iPhone 3G turned 3GS). Others are saying the next generation will be different enough to warrant the title of iPhone 5.

While the next generation’s iPhone title is up in the air, there has been some common ground on the phone’s specs. Apple’s A5 dual-core processor, which first made its debut in the iPad 2 is expected to be included in the iPhone 5. Whether it will be clocked at 1 GHz per core is up in the air as battery life is taken in to account. IOS 5 is an absolute given but there is still some division on how radical the new iPhone’s case will be.

This goes back to the iPhone 4S/5 denomination as many believe the 4S would sport the same exterior as the iPhone 4 while the iPhone 5 would feature a new, slimmer and tear drop shaped enclosure. The arguments for either case design are compelling as Apple could cut costs by keeping the current iPhone 4 enclosure but may introduce a new external design to distance itself from the antennagate and glassgate controversy.

3G Enabled iPod Touch

Not many rumors have cropped up for the fifth generation iPod Touch but like the next generation iPhone, iOS 5 shipping on the device is absolutely certain. The A5 processor is likely as well but once again clock speeds could vary when battery life is factored in.

The biggest rumors regarding the iPod Touch is the inclusion of 3G data connectivity much like the iPad. However, the claim lacks any concrete evidence. A 3G compatible iPod Touch would add a considerable amount of bulk and cost to the device which would push potential customers towards the iPhone – ironic when the rumor is meant to push the iPod Touch as a more friendly 3G only iPhone without the monthly costs of a cell bill attached.

1080p Content In iTunes

1080p content may be finally coming to the iTunes Storewhich would be another marketing point in Apple’s stance on not integrating Blu-Ray in to the Mac.

Apple has been against on adding 1080p streaming and output capabilities until the inclusion of the A5 processor on the iPad 2. The chip is more than capable of playing back and pushing 1080p streams so iOS devices would benefit from higher resolution content which can be streamed to an Apple TV. IOS 5 is even adding support for 1080p playback and would likely power a new AppleTV based on the A5 processor.