Apple fans may have to wait till next year before they can junk their iPhone 4s in favour of iPhone the Fifth.
Analyst firm Avian Securities said that production of the iPhone 5 won't begin till September, meaning a holiday launch at the earliest, or even a New Year's debut.
The note, reported in Business Insider, is based on chats with key component suppliers, which support a consensus view that launch will be either a late 2011 or early 2012 event.
The note adds that a low-spec, low-price iPhone is also on the Apple roadmap, though exactly where on the roadmap is unclear.
This is surely a worrying development for the iPhone elite – not only could such a nano-iPhone divert some components, further pushing back the iPhone 5, but it would mean that "ordinary people" can get their hands on a fondleslab.
iPhone fans will already be unsettled as manufacturers struggle to secure supplies of some key components in the wake of the Japanese earthquake last month, with the parts drought likely to hit smartphone sales to the tune of 5 per cent according to The Guardian.
Apple is thought to have already secured its supply chains. Surely it wouldn't be so cruel as to sit back and watch its rivals sweat over their iPad and iPhone catchups before dropping its latest iPhone into a fondle-hungry market. ®