iPhone 4S enters Apple inventory system, iPhone 5 to feature 21Mbps HSPA+?

Alex Wagner
Editorial Director of News and Content from  Omaha, NE
| September 29, 2011

iPhone 4S N94 backAlleged iPhone 4S back with N94 label

We're drawing closer to Apple's October 4th "Let's Talk iPhone" event and, unsurprisingly, the rumor mill has been working overtime to churn out reports about the new handset(s) before next Tuesday. First up, we've got a report from 9to5 Mac tipster Mr. X claiming that the next-gen N94 iPhone has entered Apple's inventory systems and that it features a dual-core A5 processor. That codename has popped up a couple of times in the past in conjunction with iPhone 4-like hardware, suggesting that the N94 device may be the iPhone 4S. One of the higher-end models of the N94 is listed as having the model number MD234. That number lends credence to an alleged iPhone 4S 16GB label (found below) that popped up on a Chinese forum yesterday with the model number MD239. Additionally, that label lists both IMEI and MEID numbers, suggesting that the device is capable of being used on both CDMA and GSM networks.

The same Mr. X also tells 9to5 Mac that two new iPhone 4 models have entered into Apple's inventory with the codename N90A. These devices are marked as tweaked versions of the iPhone 4 (N90), suggesting that they could be black and white versions of a cheaper, 8GB iPhone 4. Additionally, it's said that three new iPod touches have appeared in Apple's inventory with the codename N81A. The N81 identifier belongs to the current black iPod touch, meaning that the N81A is likely a white version. 9to5 Mac also points out that since there are only three new models, the black iPod touch may not see any updates, including more storage.

Lastly, Japanese site PC Watch has posted a photo of a slide from a China Unicom exec's presentation that claims that the iPhone 5 will support 21Mbps HSPA+. This would be a step up from previous 3G-enabled iPhones, which only supported speeds of up to 7.2Mbps. AT&T has branded other 21Mbps smartphones as being "4G," so if the new iPhone supports similar speeds, it could also earn the same branding.

So there's your latest batch of iPhone rumors. Obviously there's still a lot of mystery surrounding the new handset(s), including whether or not Apple is planning to unveil the iPhone 4S and iPhone 5 at their event or just one of the two. However, the fact that Apple's invite for the event features a "1" notification badge has led some to believe that just one iPhone is on tap for the event. As for the possibility of seeing 21Mbps speeds in the new iPhone, such a move would make sense considering that Apple has stuck with 7.2Mbps speeds for some time now. Sure, it's not LTE, but AT&T folk picking up the new iPhone should see a healthy speed boost, provided that they're in an area that supports AT&T 21Mbps speeds. Whatever Apple does end up pulling out of its hat next week, you can be sure that we'll bring you all of the news as it happens, so stay tuned!

iPhone 4S MD239 label

iPhone 5 21Mbps China Unicom slide

Via 9to5 Mac (1), (2), MacRumors (1), (2), PC Watch

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