Two leading Apple gadgets, the iPhone 5S and the iPad Mini 2, are set for separate release dates later this year, but this early, experts are offering wish list and predictions for the expectedly blockbuster products.
The 5S refresh, as persistently pointed out by analysts, represents an incremental upgrade from the iPhone 5 that was introduced in September 2012. The externals will be pretty much the same and the internals will likely carry over the specs that Apple had deployed in the previous iteration.
That being the case, Josh Smith of Gotta Be Mobile remains hopeful that the minor iPhone bump ups will at least include revisions on the casing department, which in the iPhone 5 has generated considerable disappointments.
While durable and dapper-looking at the same time, the iPhone 5 shell is virtually a scratch-magnet, with or without a separate protective case.
"Apple is clearly using components and design principles that allow the iPhone 5 to survive abuse, but the iPhone 5S needs a better anodization process or slight design changes that deliver better protection from the day-to-day use," Mr Smith wrote.
He went on to claim that "even with a case on, the chamfered edge of the iPhone 5 shows significant wear after almost 8 months."
Hopefully with the all the hardwork and resources in making the iPhone 5S, its "chamfered edges (will be) stronger and less susceptible to scratches (on release date)," Mr Smith said
As for the iPad Mini, analysts generally tout the Apple small tablet as a game-changer despite its less than sterling specs.
But with Retina on the horizon and other possible hardware climbs, the iPad Mini 2 will again redefine the tablet landscape, its 7.9-inch likely to generate a new breed of 8-inch rivals such the Galaxy Note 8.0 that Samsung recently unveiled, DigiTimes said in a report.
The 8-inch mark is the new compact tablet sweet spot, the same report said, indicating too that demands for 7-inch slates have been plummeting lately due mainly to the arrival of mega-sized smartphones with screens that stretch beyond the 6-inch point.
As in the case last year, Apple will again dictate the pace and the terms of competition now that Retina plus other new features are poised to come into play, the same report said.
The race to produce so-called iPad Mini killers will lead to tighter panel component supply next year, specifically of the high resolution kind, proving once again that Apple is the prompt that competitors closely monitor, DigiTimes said.
Apple has reinvented the tablet computer by introducing the iPad three years then it reinvented the iPad by releasing the iPad Mini last year, the latter a product of Apple's late response to the then emerging small tablet market.