RUMOR: Apple’s new iPhone packs double the RAM of iPhone 4, ‘A5’ chip for ‘Assistant’ voice control

“If you crack open the casing of the new iPhone, you will find significant upgrades from the iPhone 4,” Mark Gurman reports for 9to5Mac.

“The new iPhone features Apple’s dual-core A5 processor like the iPad 2 for even faster performance, better gaming, and drastically improved graphics,” Gurman reports. “Apple didn’t stop there though.”

“Unlike the iPad 2, the new iPhone packs 1GB of RAM, according to a source familiar with the SOC’s manufacturing,” Gurman reports. “Although some may be happy with the new iPhone’s substantial internal hardware boosts, the new device’s biggest selling point is actually a software feature called Assistant. As we first revealed , Assistant is Apple’s Siri-inspired, system-wide voice navigation system. It so far appears that iPhone 4 and iPhone 3GS users will be left out in the fun, unfortunately, because the feature requires the A5 CPU and additional RAM.”

Gurman reports, “From what we’ve heard, the Siri-based Assistant is described as the biggest game changer in this year’s iPhone. The system is the evolution of the Voice Control function that was introduced alongside the iPhone 3GS in 2009 and it is the fruit Apple’s purchase of Siri last year… Assistant is literally like a personal assistant, but in your phone. The speech interpretation is so accurate that users do not even have to speak very clearly or in a slow and robotic tone, according to a source familiar with the software. Users can simply talk how they would usually talk to another person, and the iPhone with Assistant will do its best to interpret the speech and provide accurate results.”

Read more in the full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Edward Weber” for the heads up.]

23 Comments

  1. I have been waiting for serious voice control since Dragon Dictate started peddling their wares in the 90s. So far zip.

    Apple doesn’t typically release half backed over hyped features that no one cares about so I hope this ones for real otherewise most users will do what I do.

    Ignore it.

  2. Darn. If this is true, I’ll have to figure out how to pay for the upgrade. As for the spam dell checker, I will give kudos to RIM. My old Storm had a rocking spell check system/library. Wouldn’t trade for it, but still, thier is their not thief…

  3. This story feels like a controlled leak warning the market that the next iPhone is going to be a 4s. The supply chain issues were too great, they tried to wait as long as possible to get the new design (iPhone “5”) out this year, but can’t make it happen.

    Get ready for the iPhone 4s. This article sounds like it was written from Apple’s own PR team, hyping the incremental improvements and software features over any external changes.

    1. How many “external changes” can there possibly be? Bigger screen and slightly different shape, maybe the home button is different or the antenna isn’t external anymore. That’s it.

      Almost everything else, like more RAM, faster CPU and GPU, more storage, better camera, and software features are by definition incremental improvements. A practical voice interface that actually works in real-world situations would be a major change, though like Facetime I suspect only a minority of people would use it regularly.

      1. Agreed. Look at the constant flood of “new” android models: the only difference in this month’s from last months is who the handset manufacturer is and different contours of the plastic case (and whatever chip specs they rattle off), none of which, in my book, make their “new” anything to crow about.

        1. I think both of you are overlooking form factor in a product line. While I agree, most of the experience is driven by software and the internals that support that, what the user sees in their hand is a large part of what got Apple to where they are to date.

          I think keeping the same form factor give the market that the new product is stale.
          Based on your comments, Apple could have kept the same form factor since the original iPhone launch and sales would have been the same. I disagree.
          You have to keep the look fresh and updated, just like new car models. In the fast paced product cycles in the mobile industry, having the same external design for over two years (in theory until the next release of the iphone in 2012) would be a disaster.
          Perception is reality. Same look, same phone. (to less informed consumers, of course)

          1. Oh, I don’t disagree form factor is a big part of the experience. And yet, a lot of Apple evangelists go on about the biggest advantages Apple has over the others are the app store (MDN’s “app-lack”) and user experience (just look at DMac’s post further down, dismissing as irrelevant that the rumoured specs are merely catching up with some competitors). Both of these are software and cannot be divined from the form factor alone.

    2. Boy, let’s hope not. If you think the stock is tanking this morning over the iPad 2 report just watch what happens if they don’t introduce the iPhone 5! Eyow! The stock would probably lose 25-30% easily. I tend to believe,and hope, that if they weren’t bringing out the five we would have heard something from Apple. Somehow they would leak,as they do so well, information downplaying the iPhone 5. If not, they had better be ready for some really pissed off customers. And fanboys!!!

  4. It will be interesting if the voice control feature actually works. My experience has been less than stellar with the current version.
    What I am surprised about is that we haven’t seen much use of the spoken voice in the iPhone. Imagine how useful it would be to have emails and texts spoken particularly if you’re driving. Even better having books read out aloud. None of this audible crap with abridged versions.

  5. I just saw this article posted on macnn. The article referencing the 9to5mac story leads with: “The new iPhone coming next month will have 1GB of RAM, a source familiar with its system-on-chip manufacturing reportedly tells 9to5Mac. The upgrade should finally bring iPhones up to par with higher-end Android smartphones, which are now frequently being equipped with 1GB.”

    Well, that’s a relief. We’ll finally be able to get ahold of an iPhone that’s as good as a high-end Android phone!

    Someone is delusional!! An Android phone with twice the RAM, twice the memory, expandable memory slots, removable batteries, NFC, and a bottle opener still eats iPhone’s dust!! It’s not about specs… it’s about experience!

  6. The article isn’t describing a phone that takes dictation; it says that “Assistant is Apple’s Siri-inspired, system-wide voice navigation system.”

    Navigation system. To me that means one can open apps and perform other user functions without using your fingers. Maybe a bluetooth earphone would be sufficient to operate the iPhone, which would remain in your pocket all day long.

    Like this: “Hal, open the weather channel app. Check the current temperature in Dallas.”

    We don’t need significantly more powerful hardware, but a way of interacting with our phones — I mean our pocket computers — to make them more useful. Touching and pointing is better than anything that’s come before, but is not the final stage of evolution.

    Apple’s mission is to harness the power of computers so they become more useful. Voice navigation is the next step in that process. But only the next step.

    For those who wonder if Apple will continue to innovate and grow in the post-Steve Jobs era, this development should provide the answer.

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