In spite of the fact that the 2012 iPhone will be Apple’s sixth generation smartphone, there is a higher likelihood that they will opt to call it iPhone 5. But read why we might not see an iPhone 6 until 2014.
Chances are, if you’re a passionate iPhone users who knows the ins and outs of Apple’s flagship mobile device, then you’re also one of the ones out there who argue that Apple should skip the name “iPhone 5” and head directly to “iPhone 6.” If you’re smart, then you know that the current iPhone 4S is in fact the fifth generation iPhone, and because of this, it would be inaccurate to call the next iPhone “iPhone 5.” And you would be right.
But you would also be wrong.
In spite of all the logic that suggests the next iPhone should be the “iPhone 6,” there is no way that Cupertino will fail to cash in on the still-lingering buzz about the iPhone 5. In the history of marketing, there has probably never been a speculative brand name like “iPhone 5″ that held so much power and potential revenue-generating potential. By choosing (or being forced) to release the iPhone 4S as its 2011 stand-in — and then by failing to hit the mark on expectations, such as a larger screen and LTE — there are still millions of smartphone users highly anticipating the iPhone 5.
And much of the buzz about the iPhone 5 has to do with its name as much as its features.
Because of the expectations for the iPhone 5 and the amount of rumors, speculation, and opinion that surrounds it in the media, “iPhone 5″ now is almost ubiquitous, representing the next generation smartphone. The name is expected to carry with it a new level of mobile computing that will set a new standard in smartphones, just as the iPad did to the tablet market when it was first released. Therefore, it would be foolhardy for Apple to fail to ever cash in on this market intensity.
To be sure, it would be accurate to name the 2012 iPhone the “iPhone 6.” But truth be told, “iPhone 6″ means nothing to the general public — it isn’t even on their radar. The keyword search garners about one tenth of the traffic that “iPhone 5″ does.
And given Apple’s new tendency to release a refreshed iPhone model every other year, it is not impossible to imagine that 2013 might feature the iPhone 5S before the iPhone 6. The iPhone 6 may be slated for as late as 2014. And while I am sure that Apple engineers are already contemplating it, the marketing department at Cupertino is most likely looking at the “iPhone 5″ as the next big product name to push out the door in 2012.
By Michael Nace