The big rumor today is that Apple is set to launch the iPhone 5S in August, with a new 5th generation iPad and 2nd generation iPad mini appearing in April. Rene Ritchie at iMore has received reports that Apple is seriously considering the launch of the next iPads next month, including a redesigned iPad, and an iPad mini that may possibly see a Retina display. Meanwhile, the iPhone 5S will carry the same outer design that the iPhone 5 sports, but with a faster A7 processor, and improved camera (we're hearing 13 megapixels.) One rumor also says that the iPhone 5S may also coming in multiple colors, similar to the iPod touch. For now, iPhone 5 users need to rely on services like AnoStyle to get custom colors on their smartphones.
Read More | iMore
Those hoping to score a 128 GB Microsoft Surface Pro have been frustrated by lack of supply, but that should be changing this Saturday. While Microsoft has been tight-lipped regarding Surface Pro 128 GB stock since launch, the company has promised that more of the tablets will be available in stores on Saturday. This includes Microsoft stores and Best Buy, with Staples being questionable--so if you want one, we recommend going with one of the first two.
Many would-be Surface Pro purchasers were disheartened to find stock so limited upon launch, since Microsoft didn't allow for pre-orders of the devices, leading many to believe that there would be plenty for everyone, which was far from reality. You can also try your luck at grabbing a Surface Pro from the Microsoft online store.
If you're one of those people (like me) who absolutely have to have the biggest and the best version of everything possible, then get ready to break out your wallets -- the biggest and most expensive iPad is now available the Apple Store online, topping out at 128 GB. The Wi-Fi model sells for $799, while the Cellular version with LTE support (your choice of AT&T, Sprint, or Verizon) sells for a whopping $929. Buying the AT&T model results in a 1-3 day ship time, while 3-5 days is the wait for Sprint and Verizon models.
Read More | Apple
If you've been thinking about picking up a Kindle Fire HD 8.9", now might be the time, as Amazon is offering a nice discount on the Wi-Fi and LTE models through February 8th. Using promo code FIRELOVE during checkout, you'll save $30 on the Wi-Fi model, bringing the price down to $269, and $50 on the version with AT&T LTE built-in, making that one $449. We're sure that the special someone in your life wouldn't mind receiving one of these for Valentine's Day, and we'll keep the fact that you got it on sale between us, okay?
Read More | Kindle Fire HD
This is the alleged iPad 5 back plate, and as you can see, it's similar in design to the iPad mini's rear shell. At the present moment, the leaked parts are not 100% substantiated as actual parts designed by Apple or made by their manufacturing partners, but nothing is ever confirmed until Apple takes the stage and makes an announcement. The report from 9to5Mac also claims that the thinness almost matches the iPad mini, an impressive feat. For many, it is somewhat obvious that Apple would follow the similar trend of the new iPhone 5 and iPad mini design for the 5th generation iPad, as they're Jonathan Ive creations; and as witnessed in the past, this is the time of year when leaked parts that end up being true start appearing.
Read More | 9to5Mac
Apple has announced a new 128 GB storage capacity option for the current iPad with Retina display, set to go on sale February 5th. The higher capacity model will sell for $799 for the Wi-Fi model, or $929 for the Wi-Fi + Cellular version. Now, the only question left is if Apple will do the same for other iOS devices, like the iPhone, iPod touch (which has had double the storage capacity of the iPhone in the past,) and iPad mini. Full press release after the jump.
Read More | Apple
Aside from the announcement of the Surface Pro launch date, Microsoft also announced today that it will be releasing three limited edition designs for its innovative Touch Cover. Expect a red model with elegant snake design for Chinese New Year, pink color with flowers, and a blue version emblazoned with skulls. These are truly limited edition, with Microsoft saying they'll be in store for just a short time. The limited Touch Covers will also come at a premium, costing $129.99 each, $10 more than the regular models.
Read More | Microsoft
Microsoft has finally announced a launch date for its Surface Pro tablet: you'll be able to pick one up on February 9th. Yes, the device missed the promised January release timeframe, but we're talking 9 days here. That date, by the way, only pertains to the US and Canada, with international markets to follow in "the coming weeks and months" according to the company.
Surface Pro will be the first Microsoft tablet to run the full version of Windows 8, as opposed to the stripped down Windows RT. This means that you'll be able to install and run regular desktop applications on the tablet. It's a half pound heavier than Surface with Windows RT, but also brings a 1080p display and digitizer pen support. Oh, and a much higher price tag. Surface Pro will start at $899 for the 64GB model, and $999 for the 128GB version.
In what may be the most obvious Apple rumor in quite some time, the company is reportedly working on the next iPad with Retina display (5th generation), and will be taking design cues from the iPad mini. This means a thinner, lighter full-sized iPad with anodized aluminum backing and thinner side bezels. What isn't so obvious, though, is the timing of the rumor. When Apple released the 4th generation iPad just 7 months after the 3rd generation model, many wondered if it meant that the company would be moving to a semi-annual release schedule. We'll know for sure if the 5th gen tablet drops in March.
We've come to the end of another year, and as we wave goodbye to 2011, we figured it was only fitting that we share the most popular stories published on Gear Live this year, as determined by our readers (we've also got the top ten most read stories regardless of publish date, as well as the ten most popular Gear Live videos of 2012!) These are the ten stories that were read the most, and when you consider that fact, it's pretty surprising to see what made the list. Let's kick it off with our most read story of the year:
iPhone 5 vs. iPhone 4S vs. iPhone original:
iPhone 5 certainly got a lot of attention this year, and our image gallery comparing it to previous iPhone designs served as our most popular post in all of 2012.