Wireless carriers are reportedly testing the iPhone 5 for network compatibility and stability, the latest in a series of rumors highlighting the highly-anticipated launch of Apple’s next-generation device.
According to the Guardian, inside sources have received “locked and sealed boxes” containing Apple’s new iPhone 5.
“The carriers can carry out checks on their network compatibility in their labs,” the Guardian said. The source goes further saying the boxes are rarely opened, if at all, and only by the highest-ranking carrier technicians.
These reports, whether true or not, supports similar rumors suggesting and iPhone 5 release sometime in September or October. If carriers have started testing the new models, a September timeframe may be more likely.
Previous supply-chain sources hinted that the iPhone 5 will feature a faster A5 processor, similar to the one found on the iPad 2, and run on both GSM and CDMA networks for global access. In addition, it will come with a higher-resolution 8-megapixel camera.
The iPhone 5 is one of the most anticipated handset releases in the smartphone market this fall, and will likely continue Apple’s momentum. The company sold 20 million iPhones in the second quarter, helping the company surge to $29 billion in revenue and topping analyst predictions that the company would only move between 17 and 18 million of the device. The company also recently overtook Nokia to become the world’s top smartphone maker, though it still trails Android in number of handsets total.
With the next-generation handset as its flagship and previous models still available for customers looking for a lower price point, Apple will continue to stretch its dominance of the mobile market, especially as it begins to push overseas.