iPhone 5S planned for August, next iPads may debut as soon as April

iMore has learned that Apple is planning the release of the iPhone 5s for this summer, currently for August. Next generation iPads, presumably the iPad 5 and potentially the iPad mini 2, may also debut as soon as this April.

Sources familiar with the plans have told iMore that the iPhone 5s does indeed have the same basic design as the iPhone 5, with a more advanced processor and an improved camera. With the iPhone 5, Apple made the casing thinner but managed to keep essentially the same, if not slightly better, overall quality. Given the dimensions, or lack-thereof, that in-and-of itself was a feat of engineering. With the iPhone 5s, the aim is to once again raise the bar in terms of iPhone optics, including a much better camera in essentially the same casing. No huge surprises there, given the past history of S-class iPhones.

We've also been told an April-ish launch is getting serious consideration for the next-generation iPads, but we're really not sure what to make of that yet. iPad 5 casings have already begun to leak -- the only big redesign in the line -- so that could make sense. Retina for the iPad mini, however, still doesn't sound imminent.

Apple is not going to release iPads that costs more or don't get as good battery life as the current models. So, if the next iPad mini does end up getting slated for April, it could be a spec bump, or have something other than Retina as a differentiator. Hopefully we'll know more soon.

Much of this information matches other recent rumors, though the timelines do differ slightly. Details can and do change, sometimes repeatedly. However, the broad strokes for Apple's 2013 iOS lineup seem to be becoming clearer. Though, again, we're still sticking firm to the belief that hardware alone isn't enough, and iOS and iCloud will be the most important factors going forward.

If these plans stick, we should be in for a fun spring and summer.

Rene Ritchie

Rene Ritchie is one of the most respected Apple analysts in the business, reaching a combined audience of over 40 million readers a month. His YouTube channel, Vector, has over 90 thousand subscribers and 14 million views and his podcasts, including Debug, have been downloaded over 20 million times. He also regularly co-hosts MacBreak Weekly for the TWiT network and co-hosted CES Live! and Talk Mobile. Based in Montreal, Rene is a former director of product marketing, web developer, and graphic designer. He's authored several books and appeared on numerous television and radio segments to discuss Apple and the technology industry. When not working, he likes to cook, grapple, and spend time with his friends and family.

  • If this is true, I don't really get the sudden scattershot release dates out of Apple.
  • Not so scattershot. This is actually the schedule they had, this time last year, more or less. There was an odd change at the end of last year but THAT was the stray shot, if this rumor is accurate, not going back to the established schedule.
  • The iPhones use to be released in June. Samsung use to release in July/August. Samsung moved up its timeline over the years, and is currently at May. Apple on the other hand moved it down to September/October. Honestly... The last great innovation from Apple was the iPad, and that was 4yrs ago.... Since then, we've seen Roku stomp on the Apple TV, the Galaxy stomp on the iPhone, the iMac squeezed by the Surface Pro. All it has left is the iPad, and at their rate, in 2yrs that'll be stomped too. I love apple because they promote innovation, but lately....
  • "The last great innovation from Apple was the iPad, and that was 4yrs ago." The iPad was launched in Spring 2010, so it was 3 years ago. Although to some it may feel like 4 years ago.
  • Your right. I was thinking "4th year." The latest iPad isn't competing just against products that were released in October/November, but with products that are being released now and until the new iPad is released. This is more of what I was referring to.
  • In terms of innovation... Apple got to charge a premium because their stuff was innovative. All they've been doing is spec bumps. Passport and Apple Maps? Why else has Apple's stock dropped 40% in the last year?
  • I have a surface pro for work and its still a windows computer. So still has its problem. Of my software ran in iPad I would change in a heart beat. It's nothing special just a thin pc
  • "Roku stomp on the Apple TV" If it's "stomping" Apple TV, how come almost noone knows what it is? And seriously? "iMac squeezed by the Surface Pro?" ....HAHAHAHAHA.
  • I feel like releasing new models of iPhones/iPads makes me both happy and sad. Happy that Apple is trying to be get the advantage or at least be on par with other phone manufacturers. And sad because I feel like the cycle is getting shorter and shorter. =/
  • The cycle should get short. There's no legitimate reason to hold back technology if it becomes available at the same price as its predecessor. If someone can't handle something better being released soon after they buy, then they should never buy.
  • I agree. I think in the past, Apple kinda help define our upgrade schedule as they came out with stuff annually. But if they're coming out with stuff every six months, then its up to you (ya, its ALWAYS up to you) to define a schedule you can live with. For example, I tend to buy workstation (iMac) upgrades every two years and a phone every year. I haven't really decided on my iPad schedule yet. Maybe 18 months if Apple is going to a six month cycle. But honestly, I've been more intrigued with iPads then iPhones lately. I may end up upgrading iPads annually and just upgrading phones based on my cell plan..
  • Apple is just keeping up with the competition ~ urrr, the Samsungs....
  • Interesting. If the iPad 5 does get introduced in April (ish), is it safe to assume that we will see iOS 7 released then as well. Also, if the iPad 5 is released this early, will be only a redesign, utilizing the same internals as the iPad 4 or will it have a more advanced internals. But I agree with Rene - iCloud & iOS (and not to forget OSX) will be the most important factors going forward.
  • Doubt it. The one consistency has been iOS debuting in June, I believe. Plus devs will need time to see the new OS.
  • The betas for iOS 1 to 4 were released in a keynote around March with the public release in early July. Only iOS 5 & 6 betas were released during WWDC but then the iPhone, both of those years, was released in the Fall. Generally testers and developers need 3 to 4 months of beta testing before public release. If the iPhone 5S is going to be released in August, then ( I would assume) iOS 7 should be released in April to allow developers and testers enough time to test the OS.
  • If iPhone 5s is going to be released in August, then iOS 7 will probably be released at the same time, mostly because Apple tends to release new iOS versions with new devices. This means that Apple can still announce iOS in the first week of June because - assuming the release of iPhone 5s is the end of August -- that's nearly the 3 months you claim developers need.
  • Major iOS releases have usually been tied to the iPhone. However there will definitely be a more minor update whenever the new iPad comes along.
  • New versions of iOS and OS X are officially introduced to developers every June at Apple's WWDC (Worldwide Developers Conference.) In the past, Apple has announced a new iPhone and iOS simultaneously at WWDC, but not since 2010 (iPhone 4 and iOS 4.0). So the answer is no. If an iPad (5th gen) ships in April, it won't have iOS 7 on it.
  • "So the answer is no. If an iPad (5th gen) ships in April, it won't have iOS 7 on it." I'm well aware if the iPad 5 (5th gen) ships in April it won't come loaded with the official release of iOS 7. I was referring to the BETA release of iOS 7 at the rumored April event. "New versions of iOS and OS X are officially introduced to developers every June..." Actually, last year Apple broke that trend with OSX and officially released the beta to developers February 16th, 2012, and the PUBLIC release was in June.
  • I doubt that we will see iOS 7 just because of an iPad 5. They need an iPad 5 that looks like an iPad Mini and is also slimmer. Right now the iPad 4 looks dated in comparison to the Mini.
  • I never said we will see iOS 7 just because of an iPad. I was asking if we will see iOS 7 BETA in April, assuming the iPhone 5S is released in August.
  • I think we'll see iOS7. Also because, and I'm guessing here, it won't support the iPhone4, there'll be lots of people upgrading to the 5S.
  • Kinda makes sense. Apple keynotes generally last 1 to 1.5 hours. I highly doubt they can fill that amount of time with just a redesigned iPad (5th gen) that's using iPad (4th gen) guts & a spec-bumped iPad mini.
  • i really don't like it. Two ipads a year and now two iphones a year? I want apple to take one full year of time for one particular model and OS version and make huge improvements every year. Not a new iphone and ipad twice a year and very small improvements.
  • Apple is facing insane competition - I've never seen anything like this is in 20 years of using computers - so they can't afford to wait 6 months with the same model while the competition is crushing them with newer models. If they could they would, I'm sure.
  • Ath0 I'm with you on that one 100% but, at the same time stepping up iOS, Cloud etc..shouldn't be taken lightly or overlooked.
    We should be able to transfer docs, music, videos etc...just as easy as can be done on other platforms.
  • Well said ! There was a time when they did not have to worry about the competition and thus could afford a year-long wait for a refresh. Those days are gone. I think the consumer is the winner here as more competition creates innovation.
  • Good point! Although the iPhone continues to sell well, the lack of what user consider major improvements is going hurting them in the end. I will purchasing my first iPhone in about a month only because of the stability of the OS and better apps. Not being able to set third party default apps to bypass Apple's programs is going to be tough to adjust to initially. But that, for me is the only major flaw I see. Most of the feature users want to see on the iPhone want be used much if at all ie.. NFC
  • Yet Samsung is allowed to put out 15 phones per year.
  • Yep, Samsung has already released a galaxy s4, s5, and s6. It's just crazy. Oh wait.. Maybe you meant all those Nexus phones? No wait, that's once a year too. Maybe you meant the Nokia 920? Nope..that hasn't been updated either. If Apple releases an ipad 5 in April, I wouldn't hold my breath on another being released in the fall.
  • Not exactly correct - Nokia has released the 820, 822, 720, 620, 505 - all since the 920 six months ago. But they haven't released 920 upgrade yet.
  • What's not correct then? No 920 upgrade yet as you said.
  • galaxy s3, galaxy mini, nexus, note, windows phone version of galaxy, galaxy 8.0, then all their dumb phones. My original response was to Pritam Das complaining two phones.
  • I agree, 1 iphone a year unless they had 2 different sizes and the ipads 1 of each size a year is enough
  • I agree. Different sizes colors and your choice of software and space.
  • Well Samsung, HTC and everyone Android is releasing a bazillion new phones a year so Apple needs to do something to keep up with the competition.
  • Well, YOU can still just buy once per year, right? And then your annual purchase would be "good" by skipping the interim upgrade......
  • escapedrift I like Samsung phones too BUT, to me hardware quality don't come close to my iPhone 5. I'd rather have a better quality phone hard and software-wise than having a large choice of cheap plastic. And I'm very sure even you would agree.
    More doesn't always equal better ;-)
  • I'm particularly interested in what the iPad Mini 2 has to offer.
  • I think u mean the iPad Mini 2, right?
  • Yea. The iPad Mini 2.
  • Planning on buying a Mini today... scared now.
  • don't be i just bought my mini a month ago. the most the new mini will have is a retina display.
  • double post*
  • Well, that's kind of the whole point.. Retina is the only big update that awaits.
  • Please don't. It's been out awhile and a new one is going to be out this year to make the resell value plummet.
  • I hope they do.
  • I just wished they'd skip the iPhone 5S and just go for the the iPhone 6 with the much requested bigger screen and faster, better specs to stay in front of the competition. Just go for it.
  • You wanna bigger screen get the Samsung galaxy 3. Not big enough? Buy an I pad and make calls on that. Wtf does a bigger screen do? It's a phone people
  • It's my preference for a bigger screen on the iOS platform than the one that's is currently being offered.. And I own an iPad already. No need for "wtf". It's just a request that will come as time marches on.
  • I don't know people get their panties in a bunch when someone says a little bigger screen would be better... They're not asking for a 5 inch + phone!! A 4.2 inch iPhone would be perfect for most people and still be able to be used with one hand.
    I for one, really like iOS on my iPhone 5 tremendously... I like the 4 inch form factor, even if it was a little bit wider it would be just right. A lot of people using the present iPhone would say the same thing too but there just to chicken to say it in here or most web blogs for fear of the heat on them it would attract from the few that holler hard!!
  • The 4.7" 1080p screen on the new HTC One is sic. That's the screen I would love to see on a new iPhone.
  • There's nothing wrong with anyone preferring any sort of upgrade that they want. It's called CHOICE. Just because someone has no problem staring at a small screen doesn't mean there's something wrong with wanting a bigger screen. Yes it's a phone. Get the phone that works for YOU.
  • Never said there was anything wrong with choice did I?
  • Yes,I agree......
  • Simply amazing... revolutionary, even!
  • I wonder if the 5S will even be worth it
  • It doesn't sound like it to me. I just wished I had the willpower to wait for the 6- but this iPhone 4S is getting a little long in the tooth with NO LTE.
  • how about as an upgrade from my 4S?
  • In my opinion the S-classes have always been better than the Number Only versions. When I purchased my first iPhone it was the 3G and that was 1 week before the 3GS came out, luckily AT&T allowed me to return the 3G and get the 3GS. I have been on the S cycle since then and I have had no complaints whatsoever.
  • going from the 4S to the 5S, in my opinion, would be well worth it. There's enough performance enhancements to notice the difference. I went from the 4S to the 5 and I don't regret one bit.
  • rewNation, I have the 4S myself. I am in the same boat as you. I am going to try and wait. My upgrade is in may but I def know I can wait until August. Now if I can wait another year for the 6 (kinda unlikely)- then I'm a bad man! lol
  • Gonna take a lot spec boost to make me upgrade my iPhone 5 or iPad 3. Now if the iPad mini gets retina and/or the next iPhone has a reasonable increase in screen size (which I doubt) I'm in!
  • really want a 5"inch iphone.
  • Now THAT would set everything in the smartphone world on fire!!! Count me in!
  • I don't see what all this really does. It doesn't change the maps screw up one bit. All it does is pumps up all the retards that will line up for hours to get a phone. You gotta be a complete loser to get in line for an electronic product. As if your life depends on it. Where is your shame zombies?
  • What maps screwup? I've been using the apple maps app on a regular basis, in some areas that were in the middle of nowhere, and the routing software has gotten me to my destination 100% of the time. I tried the new google maps and wasn't a fan of the voice guidance, and only use it as a backup to check traffic conditions.
    We live in a society of instant reaction and sometimes it fuels such incredible venom from people who are more excited to jump on the hater bandwagon than to experience things for themselves. Don't just get in line, go explore, and you might actually learn something.
  • How bout some iOS 7 news? That is where the real fun is at!
  • Honestly, until they bring back the rounded design for the iPhone, I'm going to stick with my 5. This phone is flawless to me, even when I was using it stock, but the JB has simply put the cherry on top. If they came out with an iPhone with the same dimensions as the 5, but rounded in the back like the 3G/3GS then ill be prepared to buy again. Especially considering I've got to pay retail on my iPhones so I can keep my unlimited.
  • That's the only thing about Verizon that really burns- having to buy it unsubsized to keep the unlimited plan. But hey, if you can do it- why not?
  • Isn't is ridiculous how Apple gets away with releasing 's' versions that have no additional benefit to the previous model apart from tiny incremental changes that add no value to the user? What is even more ridiculous, are the morons who buy into all this; those people that would get in a mile long line and camp overnight for a dog turd, if it had an apple badge on it!
  • I find it hard to believe that a new iPhone would be launched in August, it's such a dead time with so many people on holiday. The first week in September is much more logical, at least to me. Last year's October release was too late, Apple had a hard time supplying iPhones in time for Christmas shopping.
  • Chomping at the bit for a Mini with Retina. Hope its in April.
  • As an iPad mini owner I will probably wait till fall to upgrade anyways. Retina would be nice but seeing as I have not had this model that long I can wait if indeed retina is added to the new models. Just my 2 cents.
  • This looks like giving investors some hopes. Today I was checking stock price, looks good today. http://ggfinances.com
  • http://ggfinances.com/ggchart/AAPL
  • Does this mean apple stock is going back to 700?
  • I don't think so. They need something extraordinary. Something that will shake the ground for that:)
  • Here we go again...More iterations of the same products with 1 or 2 spec jumps...Come on guys your customer base is only going to follow this trend of non-innovation for so long and that's obvious from your stock price...lets get it together APPLE
  • Apple introduced the ipad mini last year that couldn't be found in stores hardly. How about the world's best mobile screen in the ipad 3? The thinnest, lightest, fastest smartphone? It's not a lack of innovation that is killing their stock. 2012 was a killer year for hardware for Apple. It doesn't get much better than this from a hardware standpoint. What's killing Apple is Apple. Obviously Cook hasn't convinced anyone with any kind of message. Job's could sell a bald man a hairdryer. Even with the Maps, Jobs would've handled it better. Instead, Apple recommends other apps and apologizes. That's falling down. Remember antenna gate? Jobs never backed off and apologized. We didn't see people fired. A certain arrogance (or confidence) was always there. This is all part of marketing. It's Apple's number one problem besides falling a bit in software. In that regard, Apple does need an event soon to help reestablish themselves a bit. Without iOS 7, it won't nearly do the trick but it's a start. The ipad 5 in April is a great candidate for Apple to focus on since the ipad 4 (or tweaked ipad 3) was basically looked over by most with the Mini and embarrassingly discounted by retailers in an effort to sell them. The Mini saw no such discounting.
  • "Apple introduced the ipad mini last year that couldn't be found in stores hardly. How about the world's best mobile screen in the ipad 3? The thinnest, lightest, fastest smartphone?
    It's not a lack of innovation that is killing their stock. 2012 was a killer year for hardware for Apple. It doesn't get much better than this from a hardware standpoint." This is exactly what i am talking about @ Cardfan these are not innovations. they are enhancements to an already exsiting innovation...the iphone, the ipod, the ipad...yes these are all ground breaking innovations that lead their markets. Since 2006 nothing new has come to the table just remodeled versions of these products. Take a look at the flagship android phone Galaxy IV this phone has innovations flowing everywhere out of it...New motion control technology, eye controlled scrolling, Wi-Di tech, NFC, Etc. This is what real companies focus on, created the latest and greatest technologies...Apple does not, they just want to increase their bank account(which they do well) but refuse to spend all that money on their loyal users to enhance the overall experience.
  • Except that they were innovations. You must need to look that word up. Those features you're talking about rumored (or existing) in the S4? Half baked comes to mind. Mealiness. Useless. Eye scrolling? Get real. Just more samsung bloatware added on top of an android OS that doesn't need messing with.
  • Dont bother... these guys are the ones you see in the Samsung comercials waiting in line for "The Next Best Thing" hahahahahaha. Whats next? Is it gonna be longer? What kind of design will it have? Hey... look at the phone that other guy has! hahahahahaha.
  • All these "rumors" are now hitting only to bolster Apple stock nothing else.
  • I agree, little to get excited about here.
    What about a major update to iOS?
    What about a larger screen iPhone of 4.6"+?
    What about a lower priced iPhone? To me, smaller margins for Apple means a better value for customers, unless you're a shareholder.
  • I love my 4s, but I'd love a larger / wider phone. I'm 6'3, have huge hands, and my eyes aren't getting any younger. If Apple doesn't release a bigger phone, I'm afraid I will reluctantly have to jump ship to another platform. Believe me, I DON'T want to. I love my Ipad & phone. I just want a bigger Iphone. Not bashing apple, I just want another choice. I know MANY others who feel the same way.
  • Chalk me up as another person who feels that way. I'm also getting increasingly annoyed by Apple's opposition to let me jailbreak my phone. There are a few UI tweaks that are such huge quality of life improvements I don't want to give them up. I'm fine with jailbreaking voiding my warranty, but actively preventing it entirely is petty and patronizing.
  • i'm pretty stunned that they wouldn't change the lock of the shell. i thought it was due for a change last time. But honestly, if it's simply a spec bump, which is what the last one was and i think they could be slipping.
  • I hope all apps in Apple Store can be downloaded and use by all kinds of iOS. This new release of iPhone 5S is great but does all the apps work with its updated iOS? I bet not. Makes me want to choose android phones in this case. :/
  • 4S contracts will be over, and should be a lot of interest in the 5S. The only thing that is a fact, too many releases, and your current device will not be supported sooner, or partly supported. That is a main problem, because you now have a device that is great to use, but not so great to due to support, or lack of. I always read the current tech trends, when to buy, but sometimes you have to buy, because you just cannot wait due to your current device is broken, and you need something now. Wonder what the S stands for this time?
  • It always kills me when people start talking about how disappointed they'll be if the S version is only a slight bump in specs. They've only been following the same pattern for years and quite successfully might I add. After being wowed with android specs this last time (and being disappointed with android in practice) I'm going to buy the 5S. I like the S cycle as you get the best iteration of their product cycle.
  • Pushing out more phones with slight spec bumps isn't the answer, improving iOS is what's sorely needed.
  • Time to invest in silver!
  • Select your the best product in here
  • Only Rene seems to be talking about this, none of the other guys in the media are saying anything about it. Usually looking at the past trend what we have noticed is, if it was a expected release as nearer as April atleast couple of months before the event, Media starts talking about it. It is almost Mid-March and we are talking about a April Release by now this story should have been all over the media but it ain't happening ! I doubt about this News !
  • You guys need to open your eyes. I read a comment that said Apple is trying to keep up with the competition.... WRONG ANSWER. I dont know if you ifans are to bling to see it but Apple is falling behind, just look at the stock price. Their devices are all the same and new releases only get small improvements like a better processor and grapics. The iPhone 5 only got longer... BIG WHOOP. Mark my words the iPhone 5s will be apples downfall because it will be the same phone will little to no improvements that people want WHICH IS THE KEY! Look at whats out there... HTC ONE WITH BETTER GRAPHICS AND PROCESSING! Look at whats coming... GALAXY S 4! Having two apps open at the same time was a genius move that apple will never implement. The fact is, Apple is giving you the same ice cream every night and only sometimes adding sprinkles or syrup but all in all ITS STILL THE SAME FLAVOR ICE CREAM! By the by, I have an iPad 2 and 3 and an iphone 4s so this comment is unbiased. Some of us just chose to see the truth.
  • Wow, that was so well-said. I do feel the same way nowadays.
  • I think that is better a 4,2 or 4,3 inches display for new iPhone 5s !!!!!
  • I really hope the iPhone 5S supports simultaneous Voice and Data over Verizon's LTE. I believe it's the antenna in the iPhone 5 that doesn't support it not the LTE network correct?
  • you know very well apple needs to update its ios because its boring
  • Zzzzz.. This article is a waste of time.. I already stated this in the forums weeks ago.
    The iPad 5 "IS" imminent.
    The Retina Mini is coming in................ October.
    iOS 7 is coming in ....................October.
    Bank on it. Nothing short of a Miracle will allow the iPhone to catch up in Tech & Spec with Android.
    Nuff Said..
  • The most amazing will be the new processors for both the devices and the new improvements will make both the devices more innovative :)
  • I can't believe how fast technology is going these days.
  • How much better could the 5S be than the 5? I have a 4S and I think the camera is amazing and I even have a Canon DSLR T2i but find myself using the iPhone 95% of the time. I realize that the 5's camera is only slightly improved over the 4S but what will they do? I know Samsung is putting a 13MP in the new G4 would Apple do something like that? I really am ready to get a new phone just to take advantage of the 4G LTE. Does it make since to get the iPhone 5 now or wait it out until August to get the 5S?
  • Should the iPad 5 have an inbuilt stylus , the i stylus like the S stylus like the note 8 or note 10.1
  • really a nice article...
    to see which one of the concept feature will be the official one ... goto http://www.iphone6updates.com/potential-iphone-6-designs-that-could-be-s...
    must visit ..i bet you will like it ...