Not much happened in Apple rumors this week. In fact, probably the most interesting "rumor" this week wasn't really a rumor at all, but rather some decently level-headed analysis from Marco Arment on the possible form factor for the long-rumored "big iPhone."
"Unless something major changes between now and its release, we know pretty much what the new low-end iPhone will look like, thanks to reliable sources." That's a bold statement, and it's one I'll happily come back to when/if this product ever actually launches. In the meantime, although iLounge's claims regarding the phone's supposed design are actually pretty plausible, the fact that they're so specific about a product that's not even confirmed to exist is cause for skepticism.
In accordance with Betteridge's Law: No. This is supposedly a prototype piece that a Chinese iPad accessory maker somehow got ahold of, but it could just as easily be a mockup they built themselves, extrapolating from the iPad mini's design.
That's all anyone is doing anyway when it comes to the next full-size iPad; virtually everyone expects the iPad 5 (or whatever Apple winds up calling it) to look like a bigger version of the currently-shipping iPad mini. So brace yourself for the late-year onslaught of idiocy from bloggers who'll loudly proclaim that Apple is out of ideas and the ship is sinking.
As told by "sometimes-reliable" Digitimes, which means you'll find more truth at the bottom of a bottle of gin. (Note: TUAW does not condone consuming an entire bottle of gin at one go, no matter how many of these dumb rumors you've been reading.)
Here's some more Digitimes-sourced nonsense, "which has a spotty track record but has been known to receive advance word of Apple's potential product plans from component suppliers," according to AppleInsider.
Digitimes' track record is "spotty" the same way winter in Prudhoe Bay, Alaska is "a bit nippy."
A crazier prediction: iPhone Plus is real, and huge (Marco Arment)
Marco Arment makes the case for a 4.94-inch giant iPhone, akin to the ginormous Samsung Galaxy phones that are apparently all the rage these days (according to Samsung). Here's the crazy part (contains no actual crazy): he makes a really good point.
Say what you will about this mentality, but a not-insignificant portion of the buying public is convinced "bigger is better" when it comes to buying decisions. Bigger cars, bigger boxes of cereal, bigger burgers, bigger houses, and now, paradoxically, bigger phones. The last image in Arment's post, where he compares the iPhone and the theoretical "iPhone Plus" versus two behemoth Samsung phones really drives the point home: whether it makes sense for Apple to build a bigger iPhone or not, there's a market for it. People would buy it. Maybe a lot of people.