Piper Jaffray's Gene Munster has been saying for more than a year that he expects Apple's (aapl) to introduce a "family" of new iPhones in 2009. On Monday afternoon, less than a week before the start of WWDC, the company's annual developers conference, two reports surfaced that suggest his expectations may finally be realized.
- An unnamed "trusted source" told Engadget's Chris Ziegler that the PTRCB -- the board that certifies that new cellular devices comply with GSM network standards -- has approved new iPhones with 4GB, 8GB, 16GB and 32GB capacities. The PCS Type Review Certification Board was established in 1997 and includes AT&T (t) among its members
- The Boy Genius Report, a site with unusually good sources in the telecommunications industry, posted what appear to be leaked snapshots of Fido Solution's product roadmap for the second and third quarters of 2009 that include one slide showing a $99 4GB iPhone 3G. Fido, formerly Microcell Telecommunications, is a subsidiary of Rogers Wireless (rci), Canada's largest cellular carrier.
Neither report has received independent confirmation and there are elements of the second that raise eyebrows. Among the specs listed in the Fido snapshot is "Video Calling (iChat)" -- a feature that would require a camera mounted on the front of the iPhone. This is not inconceivable, but it would give the new iPhone two cameras -- one on the front for iChat, the other on the back for normal photos and videos. That's a lot of optical hardware for $99.