KGI Securities’ Ming Chi Kuo has made his predictions for the Apple hardware that will hit the stores later this year. In relation to this, he expects a wide array of new iOS and Mac products which will help the company address the larger part of the market.
According to the analyst, the iPhone maker will introduce a number of new iOS devices this year. This includes a low-cost iPhone 5, the so-called iPhone 5S, second-generation iPad Mini with Retina Display, and a fifth-generation iPad.
He also added that Apple will nix the non-Retina MacBook Pro and replace it with an affordable Retina Display-toting lineup. However, Kuo is quick to note that none of the product forecasts are expected in the first quarter of the year. He even speculates that “many” of the purported devices will be introduced during the second half of the year.
Low-Cost iPhone and iPhone 5S
According to Kuo, Apple will roll out both iPhone 5S and low-cost iPhone 5. The analyst believes that the iPhone 5S will be launched sometime in June or July, and it will have identical aesthetic as the existing model. However, it will feature a built-in fingerprint sensor, improved camera, and more powerful A7 SoC.
In addition, a low-cost iPhone 5 will go on sale around the same time. The device’s affordable price tag can be attributed to a plastic exterior that will be available in multiple colors.
Fifth-Generation iPad, iPad Mini, and iPod Touch
Aside from the iPhone units, Kuo also speculates that a fifth-generation iPad will be released this year. It will feature a lighter frame and a more refined look, reminiscent of the iPad Mini’s narrow bezel.
Moreover, the iPad Mini will have a successor and will sport a Retina Display with 2048 x 1536 pixel resolution. By using a screen resolution that is similar to a regular Apple tablet, app developers no longer need to make any software changes to fit a new native format.
With regards to the iPod Touch, Kuo is not expecting any revolutionary change for the device. Now that the fifth-generation iPod Touch is out in the market, Apple will likely introduce a cheaper variant of the current design. In order to reach the $199 target price, the low-cost iPod Touch will ditch the camera and will boast less built-in memory.
Retina-Enabled MacBook Lineup
Apple’s MacBook lineup, on the other hand, Kuo sees that the life cycle of non-Retina models will come to an end. It will be replaced by Retina Display-enabled units that eschew optical drives. Furthermore, the MacBook Air will have little changes aside from a boost in internal specs.