Rumor: Apple to release $99 iPhone this year

Yet another cheap iPhone rumor has the Web abuzz.

UPDATE:

Rumors continue to swirl about the possibility that Apple will launch a cheaper "budget iPhone." Techdy blog recently published photos and a video of what it claims to be the upcoming low-cost phone.

The images caught the attention of Mashable and CNN, which reports that Techdy blog snagged the device from suppliers in Taiwan.

The device resembles the iPhone 5, except that it's case is completely made of plastic. Making the iPhone with plastic, instead of the metal that is used with the current model, will help drop the price to around $99, according to reports.

The blog's claim follows another photo leak of the alleged iPhone's cases which are shown in a variety of colors, including blue and yellow, according to Mashable.

Apple has yet to confirm that a cheap iPhone is set to debut.

 

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UNCONFIRMED: That Apple will debut an iPhone priced between $99 to $199 this year

An iPhone with a fresh design including a large screen and plenty of features, all for $99? Such a thing may be available later this year according to rumors posted by Technorati, DigiTimes and Mashable. And while the reports differ on the size and features, most seem to agree that some kind of cheap iPhone is on the way soon.

Disputed specs

According to the DigiTimes report, the $99 iPhone will feature a large, 5-inch display, but it will only be available in China and other “emerging markets.” The Techorati report, however, has no mention of the phone having a 5-inch display, or that it will be exclusively for China. Meanwhile, GMA News is calling the device an “iPhone mini,” which would seem a vote against the large-screen rumor.
Find out what Apple’s marketing chief says about the rumor

Intel going cheap, too

If Apple is developing a low-cost iPhone, either for US consumers or so-called “emerging markets,”  it wouldn’t be the only company doing so. According to The Inquirer, Intel is introducing a low-cost microchip meant to bring smartphone features to phones in countries like China and elsewhere where simple, low-cost phones are mainly used.

Learn how many smartphones are predicted to be sold by 2016

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