Get ready to iFreak out: Apple’s latest is nearly here.
The still unannounced but widely expected Apple iPhone 5 has gone into production in Shanghai, according to a report in DigiTimes magazine.
Citing industry sources in Taiwan, the website said contract manufacturer Pegatron has begin building the new phone in a factory in eastern China. Pegatron is one of several manufacturing giants that make consumer electronics for Apple, along with Foxconn Technology and others.
Pegatron will also begin making a new version of the iPad, with shipments in the third quarter expected to reach a few million units, the sources said.
Then again, a skeptical person might ask, is it iReal?
Taiwanese tech site Digitimes often begins such rumors, thanks to deep connections with Apple’s Taiwanese supply chains. A site editor recently explained that its stories sometimes represent prototypes that never become final shipping products.
“Apple have a lot of its R&D projects and ideas tried out at its supply chain partners in Asia,” Digitimes deputy managing editor Joseph Chan told Time. “Many of the prototypes created by the supply chain partners will never make it to the market after Apple’s assessments.”
For many consumers, the answer appears to be: iDunno. But iWant.
A new study by 451 Research reveals an “unprecedented demand” for the unannounced phone.
“Overall smartphone sales should spike to an all-time high this fall -- and of course Apple is going to be the number one beneficiary,” noted Dr. Paul Carton, 451’s vice president of research. “But besides Apple, and to a lesser degree Samsung, no other manufacturer is likely to benefit from this coming wave of demand.”
The survey of over 4,500 North American buyers showed a strong uptick in consumers likely to buy Apple’s latest: 31 percent, as compared to 21 percent in October.
Unable to wait, many Apple fans have begun creating illustrations of what they believe the next phone will look like. Dutch designer Martin Hajek recently created a series of renderings based on leaked images he had seen on various tech websites. He described his passion for smartphones and tech design as his hobby.
“As a (former) industrial designer I like to play around with 3D modelling and visualizing,” Hajek told FoxNews.com. “Apple's unreleased products lend themselves perfectly to play with.”
Meanwhile, several reports suggest Apple will move to a smaller dock connector on the base of the phone, meaning the ecosystem of gadgets that connect through it will no longer work.