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Rumor Roundup: Unreleased Apple product 'delayed' (again)

IPHONE 6 LEAK: This could be our first look at the completely redesigned iPhone 6 (BGR)

BGR wants us to believe that some guy's 3D rendering, based on "leaked" blueprints of dubious provenance, counts as a "first look" at the iPhone 6.

While the renderings are pretty slick, and I'd gladly buy an iPhone that looked like that, this is still so far removed from real news that it's painful.

Purported iPhone 6 pictures show protruding camera, rounded edges (9to5 Mac)

From the article: "The validity of these images cannot be confirmed." But we'll post it anyway, because nothing says "pageviews" like "unconfirmed and possibly fake photos of unreleased Apple hardware."

As for the rumor itself that the next iPhone will have a "protruding" camera? This is one rumor I definitely hope is bogus. Seems to me like even a small protrusion on the back of an iPhone would be just begging to get caught in your pocket and cause you to fumble the phone... straight onto the screen-cracking concrete. No thanks.

Reuters: Production of 'iPhone 6' screens to begin in May, 5.5" model delayed (AppleInsider)

This marks roughly the 10,342nd time an unreleased, unconfirmed Apple product has been "delayed" because of manufacturing problems or some other issue. This is how rumormongers manage to cover their asses when reporting rumors based on sources that are spurious (at best) - if the rumored product never gets released, it's not because the rumors were wrong and Apple never planned to release it in the first place. No, it's because "the mighty have fallen" and Apple isn't capable of releasing the rumored device for one reason or another.

Report: Apple in talks to buy chipmaker Renesas SP Drivers to improve iPhone display/battery life (9to5 Mac)

Unlike most Apple acquisition rumors, this one is A) relatively mundane, B) features a company you probably hadn't heard of before this rumor, and C) is tied to a company that makes products that could benefit Apple today rather than in some hypothetical future. Because of that, this rumor is a lot more plausible than your typical "Apple in talks to buy Twitter" or "Apple investigating acquisition of Tesla Motors" nonsense.

Apple predicted to announce 'modest' increases to share buyback & dividend in next earnings call (AppleInsider)

AppleInsider passes on Gene Munster's estimates of Apple's quarterly financial performance without mentioning that Munster's estimates are consistently wrong - sometimes substantially wrong.

Let's also not forget that the man's perennial obsession with a potential Apple HDTV has torpedoed his credibility so badly that it's become a running joke in the tech sphere.

In other words, don't make any investment decisions based on Gene Munster's predictions of Apple's performance. More accurate sources include: Morgan Freeman, your aunt Martha, and/or a Magic 8 Ball.

Expect faster MacBooks with longer battery-life thanks to DDR4 RAM (9to5 Mac)

Unlike most "analysts" out there, the one linked to in this article actually seems to know what he's talking about. Put this one in the "plausible" column.

Here's how the iPhone 6 might really hurt Apple this summer (BGR)

I was worried a whole week would go by without some brain-dead article from BGR telling us the latest reason why Apple is DOOMED. Strangely, the logic behind this particular proclamation of doom is actually easy to follow, and indeed mildly plausible: various analysts predict that Apple's sales will take a bigger than normal hit over the summer quarter due to frenzied anticipation for the iPhone 6.

Indeed, it has been the case for the past few years that consumers tend to back away from the iPhone in the quarter leading up to a new model. Rumor blogs are, of course, directly complicit in this behavior, spending months whipping consumer expectations into a froth. I see this all the time in the real world, with "normal" people quoting the bits and pieces of nonsense they've gleaned from the seedy underbelly of the internet -- "My brother is holding out for the iPhone 6, because he wants a bigger screen" -- and it makes me wince every time.

Strangely left out of BGR's latest proclamation of doom is the fact that although Apple's iPhone sales traditionally take a big dip in the quarter preceding a new model, they inevitably rebound in spectacular fashion in the months thereafter.

In other words, although the iPhone 6 might "hurt" Apple before it comes out, it'll probably more than offset that "hurt" after it's launched.

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