After I wrote my editorial on setting expectations I got a ton of tweets and comments and emails from people who really, truly want to believe Apple will be releasing a full on, big screen, metal back, different looking iPhone 5 this Tuesday at the Let's Talk iPhone event. They're talking about how competitive the market is now as opposed to 2009 when Apple did just that with iPhone 3GS. They're saying it's Tim Cook's first big event and he can't afford to disappoint. They're pointing to case leaks in Asia and supposed case SKUs in the US. They looking at the 15 month gap between devices and wondering how on earth Apple couldn't release a brand new iPhone 5 this year. How one earth they could "just" release an iPhone 4S.
It's like Mulder vs. Skully from the old X-Files show. (Wikipedia it, whipper snappers.)
Mulder is driven by emotion. He wants to believe. Scully is ruled by science. She's a skeptic. And that's where we are right now.
Like I said, I want to believe. It's such a compelling story. It would make for such a spectacular announcement. It would fill my fanboy heart with a soaring glee that would make me near impossible to deal with for a month or so. It would be like Christmas and my birthday rolled into lottery winning day in gadget form.
I want to believe... but in the last few days, looking at the leaks, listening to trusted sources, talking with other bloggers who are listening to their trusted sources... I just have to be the skeptic.
If Apple has truly pulled a fast one on the bloggers and the sources, if they've kept a full blown iPhone 5 secret from spy shots and manufacturing leaks beyond that case mold, then kudos to them. Well played.
If not, then we're getting iPhone 4S and we can gather back here in October 2012 for that (or some other) iPhone 5 and dance this little jig again.
Now the differences at this point are mostly cosmetic. Both devices would have a dual-core Apple A5 Cortex A9 processor. Both would have an 8 megapixel camera. If there's a RAM bump or storage bump, both would have it. The only differenced between the rumored iPhone 4S and iPhone 5 are screen size (3.5 vs. 3.75 or 4-inches), perhaps thickness, and the material of the back plate (glass vs. not glass/maybe metal). That's it. Either phone would be as specced out and as competitive as the other.
But I'm not going into Tuesday expecting anything beyond that iPhone 4S, iOS 5 and Assistant, some new iPod touches, and the usual stuff that goes with that type of announcement. I'm not Mulder this year, much as I truly wish I could be. This year, I'm Scully.