iPhone 5 release date: Sprint drops price of iPhone 4S, leading many to believe iPhone 5 is coming

Sprint has dropped the price of its iPhone 4S to $149.99, leading many to speculate the rumored September release of the iPhone 5 is the real deal.

In other news, Apple's decision to dump native YouTube support from its new iOS 6 will continue on to its rumored iPhone 5, according to Computer World.

Apple may also plan to make the new iPhone "Google-free."

The Washington Post recently reported that Google services may be completely removed from the iPhone 5. Apple may change its default search engine to Bing:

"Microsoft needs Apple to make Bing relevant. Apple needs Microsoft in order to stop paying Google billions," TechCrunch's MG Siegler wrote. "This is so obvious. I think we may see a Google-free iPhone sooner, rather than later."

Apple will sell 250 million iPhone 5 devices, based on the company's theory that each new iPhone sells equal to all previous generations combined, Asymco reports.

Apple's sales theory has been detailed in court during the ongoing Apple vs. Samsung trial when Apple's senior vice president Phil Schiller said, "each new generation sold approximately equal to all previous generations combined."

New video posted on YouTube by reportedly shows a detailed comparison between the rumored iPhone 5 glass lens and iPhone 4S glass lens.

In the video's description, the YouTube poster lays out some of the changes in the new iPhone -- that is, if this is the real deal:

He writes:

1) Size:

iPhone 4s: Height: 76.65mm Width: 51.60mm Display area: 3.6 inches Thickness: 0.9mm
iPhone 5: Height: 90.25mm Width: 51.60mm Display area: 4.065 inches Thickness: 1.00mm

2) Transmittance:

iPhone 5 is better compared with iPhone 4S

3) The camera hole of iPhone 5 glass lens moves from the left side to the right middle above the receiver.

4) The light sensor hole moves from the top to the left side of receiver. Also, it becomes very small.

5) Home button:

The diameter of home button hole of iPhone 5 glass lens is narrowed 0.3mm. That is to say the iPhone 5 home button will become smaller and the iPhone 4S home button will not fit for iPhone.

6) Anti scratch ability:

The anti-scratch ability of iPhone 5 is better than iPhone 4S.

You can watch the video here : http://bit.ly/NeNPXE

Apple, which has made no official announcement, is planning a September 12 event at which the next generation of the iconic smartphone will presumably be announced, according to multiple reports.

According to R euters.com , Japan's Sharp Corp. will start shipping screens for the new phone in August.

According to the report, Apple is equipping the next iPhone with a larger screen after Samsung Electronics unveiled its latest Galaxy smartphone with a 4.8-inch touch-screen.

The screens will also be thinner than with the use of "in-cell panels." According to Reuters, the new technology embeds touch sensors into the liquid crystal display, eliminating the touch-screen layer found in current iPhones.

iMore, an Apple-oriented blog, was the first to report that "sources who have proven accurate in the past" said the phone will be introduced at an event that day and released nine days later. Observers are calling it the iPhone 5, although no name has been announced.
 
Others, including The Wall Street Journal's All Things D blog, followed with similar reports. Quoting anonymous sources at Apple, All Things D said an event is planned for the week of September 9. The 12th would be a Wednesday, which follows with previous Apple events.
 
A September release would be slightly ahead of Apple's established one-iPhone-per-year pace. But the iPhone 4S took longer than usual, its October unveiling coming about 16 months after the iPhone 4.
 
A fall iPhone release has been considered a foregone conclusion by most observers for months. Speculation has focused on a handful of expected new features, including a slightly larger screen, a smaller dock connector and NFC technology that would make it easier for shoppers to make payments through their phones.
 
iMore also says that the mythical "iPad Mini" will be unveiled at the event. Speculation has increasingly ramped up that Apple, faced by competition from Amazon's Kindle Fire and Google's Nexus 7 tablets, is making a smaller version of the iPad.
 
The move would fly in the face of statements made by the late Apple CEO Steve Jobs, who favored full-size tablets. But Apple faces unprecedented competition in the space and may argue that screen technology that would have made a smaller iPad impractical before is now available.
 
On the smartphone front, Apple also faces a landscape that's arguably more challenging than it's seen in a while. The iPhone is still the most popular handset in the field, but the total number of phones running Google's Android operating system has been greater for some time.
 
And while competitors in the past have arguably spent the time between
iPhone releases trying to catch up, many reviewers feel that several models among the current crop of Android phones have surpassed the 4S in terms of features and performance.
 
Notably, the Samsung Galaxy S III has topped 10 million in sales in two months -- a number it took the Galaxy S II five months to hit. Reviewers have praised its bigger screen, sleek design and a set of new features.
 
The iPhone 4S was, in some senses, a glorified update of the iPhone 4, with its advances coming in new software features and improved camera and display. It outsold its predecessor, although with anticipation high for the looming iPhone 5, sales have begun to flag.
 
According to its recent earnings report, Apple shipped 26 million iPhones from April to June, which was less than the 28 million to 29 million that Wall Street analysts had predicted. It was a steep drop from the 35.1 million that the company sold in the previous quarter.
 
Doug Gross, CNN contributed to this report.
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