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Three Reasons This Year's iPhone Refresh Might be Delayed

Three Reasons This Year's iPhone Refresh Might be Delayed
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Every analyst and rumor website has an estimate of when the next iPhone refresh will hit the streets, but news Thursday may force those estimates to be updated.

AppleInsider reported that Apple’s (NASDAQ: AAPL) refresh of its iPhone line, including the much rumored iPhone 5S and a cheaper iPhone may not hit the streets in June or July like the rumor mill seems to believe.

According to the site, Ming-chi Kup of KGI Securities shared a research note on Thursday laying out a few reasons that the new line of iPhones may be delayed.

Fingerprint Technology

Apple will be the first to use a fingerprint sensor, but when you’re the first, you have to solve all of the problems that come with new technology. Apple may be planning to place the sensor under the home button which would allow for better security without having to enter a password every time the phone is used.

The problem may be in the coating material under the cover glass.

 iOS 7

Apple’s new iOS 7 will be the first to involve famed Apple designer Jony Ive. Apparently, Ive is asking for a flatter design that is more stark and simple than other designs. The OS also has to integrate fingerprint technology along with the many other changes that always come with an OS refresh.

Multiple outlets have reported that iOS 7 is behind schedule. It might be so far behind that Apple is pulling engineers from the OS X team according to reports from sources like Gizmodo.

Cheap iPhone

The new, cheaper iPhone may be held up because nobody at Apple has figured out what to call it yet. (Okay, we made that up.) In rumored reality, the cheaper iPhone will likely be made with a plastic casing. The thinner, cheaper casing might cause manufacturing delays related to the coating on the new phone.

Because of these delays, Kuo believes that Apple will see only single digit growth in iPhones and iPads in Q3—well below street consensus calling for 30 to 40 percent growth.

Sure, this is just another rumor but Kuo, unlike many analysts, has a strong track record of predicting products, timelines, and earnings. This rumor may have a little more credibility than the glut of analyst predictions that come out almost daily.

If Kuo is correct, that might give Apple more time to join with Google (NASDAQ: GOOG) in “abusing the court system.”

Disclosure: At the time of this writing, Tim Parker was long Apple.

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