If someone tells you a source for a story is "very credible" or "has a strong track record" or is "a well-connected insider," do this simple check first. Is the person or entity saying these things about the source a rumor blog that regularly posts whatever random BS anyone says about Apple? If so, you may safely disregard their opinion of the source's credibility. In fact, it couldn't hurt to assume the opposite is true.
According to 9to5 Mac, some analyst "has a fairly strong track record in predicting future Apple products (timing notwithstanding)." I don't know about you, but I got a chuckle out of that disclaimer. It's like, "This guy has been accurate in the past. Oh, he's been wrong about the when, but occasionally right about the what, so we'll just say he has a fairly strong track record and report absolutely everything he says like it's gospel."
An infinite number of monkeys with access to an infinite amount of prune juice will be capable of flinging an infinite amount of poo against the wall. This is otherwise known as the modus operandi for Apple analysts everywhere.
As for the rumors themselves, most of this analyst's claims have to do with the timing of the launches, and we've already established his accuracy is "timing notwithstanding," so let's move on.
This rumor is boring enough that it's probably true. It's also not surprising that Apple's having problems meeting demand for displays after ditching Samsung as a supplier. Whatever else you may say about Samsung, they make some pretty killer LCDs (he says while admiring his 40" Samsung, before slapping himself for referring to himself in the third person).
This rumor absolutely reeks of "throw everything against the wall and see what sticks." It's also comfortably far enough in the future that, when this never happens, the rumor blogs will have long forgotten about it and won't count it against this "well-connected insider's" track record. Convenient!
Well... hmm. If this is a fake, whoever made it put an admirable amount of effort into it.
It must be Opposites Day, because for once financial analysts have actually said something that makes sense. Taking note of Apple's revenues for the last financial quarter and comparing them to the next one, these analysts think it's unlikely Apple will meet its own guidance unless it launches some new products. While it's true that Apple's annual Back to School sale will probably give them a small revenue bump, that's probably not enough to make up the difference. This time the analysts may actually be on to something (other than what they're usually on *cough*).
"Digitimes reports that" -- BZZZZZT! Next.
I'm going to go with Betteridge's Law here and say, "Not a chance."
BGR goes out on a limb and predicts that "we may see new hardware in Apple's upcoming smartphone." This is the kind of hard-hitting reporting and logical analysis you won't get anywhere else. Thankfully.
Increased shipping times aren't always an indicator of new products in the pipeline, but it's not outside the realm of possibility, either. We'll see.
This date doesn't match with everyone's favourite "well-connected insider" analyst, so the good news is one way or the other we'll have someone to laugh at for guessing wrong.
From the article: "A picture posted on the Chinese microblogging site Weibo appears to show the rear of an assembled low-cost iPhone."
But later: "Because of the angle of the photo, is it impossible to tell if it is an assembled phone or just the rear plate."
"For its part, AppleInsider cannot independently confirm the authenticity of the items in the photo, and therefore publishes images simply for the sake of discussion."
Let me fix that for you: "For its part, AppleInsider cannot be arsed to do basic fact checking of the items in the photo, and therefore publishes images simply for the sake of pageviews."
Let's briefly diverge from the rumors and see how BGR's weekly Apple doom n' gloom parade is going.
Oh dear, we're off to a poor start. This article is actually somewhat optimistic about Apple's prospects. How did it get past BGR's vigilant editors?
Ah, that's better. That's the kind of sensationalistic, poorly-evidenced headline I expect to see. And it's sourced entirely from some random financial analyst, too! Whew! I was worried there for a minute.
Sweet, another sensationalist headline, and this time the source is Digitimes, so we're circling the drain of legitimacy. Now bring us home with the derp trifecta, BGR.
Main source: some random analyst. "Corroborating" source: Digitimes. Well done, BGR. My faith in your... unique... brand of reporting is thoroughly restored.
Speaking of sensationalist tech tabloids, let's check in on Cult of Mac.
From the article: "The iPhone 5S and the new low-cost iPhone are expected to launch on Friday, September 6, according to a 'very credible' source."
Oh, really? Let's see what a legitimately credible source on Apple rumors has to say about that.
Jim Dalrymple of The Loop: "Nope."