Apple's iPhone 5S: What to Expect

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- The world awaits Apple ( AAPL) and the iPhone 5S, reported to come in just 12 days. With tons of rumors and speculation being bandied about, it's important to separate the truth from the half-truth from the ridiculous.

Interest in the next iPhone from Apple has been ramping up in the past few weeks, especially as Apple announced it sold 31.6 million iPhones in its most recent fiscal quarter. That was up from 26 million in the year-ago quarter, a sign that interest in the iPhone still continues to be strong.

Apple is expected to unveil the new iPhone along with a lower-end iPhone Sept. 10 in California, though the exact location has not been unveiled yet.

CEO Tim Cook continues to believe the high-end of the smartphone market is not slowing down, "And I don't subscribe to the common view that the higher end if you will of the smartphone market is at its peak," Cook said on Apple's most recent earnings call. Though, there is speculation that Apple will release a low-end iPhone in an effort to grab market share away from Google's ( GOOG) Android operating system, and allow it to compete better in China.

What it Will Look Like

Apple's past release, the iPhone 5, was a drastic change from the iPhone 4 and 4S, as it offered a larger screen, and a thinner body. The iPhone 5 is 4-inches, and most expect that Apple will keep the phone the same size, with a 4-inch screen.

The iPhone 5 is 18% thinner (just 7.6 millimeters) than the iPhone 4 and 4S and it's expected that Apple will keep the same thinness and perhaps the same weight, weighing just 112 grams.

The casing of the iPhone 5S will likely be very similar to the iPhone 5, with an aluminum body, except for a couple notable features. We've seen recent pictures that the iPhone 5S will come in a gold or champagne color, offering something different than the standard black or white iPhone. There have also been pictures indicating Apple will release a graphite-backed iPhone, further differentiating the color scheme on its chief revenue driver.

Aside from the actual physical features of the iPhone 5S, the biggest change will likely be to the operating system. "The big update for most users I think will be iOS 7," said Ironfire Capital managing director and Real Money contributor Eric Jackson. "I still think that's going to be the biggest surprise."

Apple's latest mobile operating system is a drastic change to its predecessors, with flatter icons and a new color scheme.

Features and Beneficiaries

Now that Apple has introduced Long Term Evolution (LTE) into its product line-ups, we can expect that to be the case going forward until a standard emerges.

The big new feature people are expecting from the iPhone 5S is fingerprint technology, or biometrics, allowing users to unlock their phones with their fingerprints, instead of entering a password.

Apple acquired AuthenTec, a maker of fingerprint technology in 2012, and since then rumors have swirled that this will be included in the latest iPhone release. Some analysts on Wall Street have said the fingerprint technology could be used for payment processing as well.

In addition to the fingerprint technology, the iPhone 5S will likely have a larger and better camera, which could help Sony ( SNE), as it's supplied the 8 MP back camera for the iPhone 5, and Omnivision Technologies ( OVTI), which makes the iSightHD front camera.

Qualcomm ( QCOM) may also benefit, should Apple decide to use Qualcomm's new global chip to help cut down on costs and truly be a global iPhone.

In February, Qualcomm released the RF360, which supports all networks around the world. The RF360 supports the following networks: LTE-FDD, LTE-TDD, WCDMA, EV-DO, CDMA 1x, TD-SCDMA and GSM/EDGE, which would allow Apple to make a "global iPhone," which supports LTE connectivity.

If Apple does use the RF360, the long-awaited deal with China Mobile ( CHL), the world's largest carrier with over 700 million subscribers, could happen sooner than previously thought. Cook recently visited with China Mobile for the second time this year to discuss "matters of cooperation," further adding fuel to the fire.

There's a high likelihood that Apple will unveil the latest version of its A-series processors, the 64-bit A7, used to run its iDevices. The A7 is reported to be 30% faster than its predecessor, the A6. Apple designs its own chips using intellectual property from ARM Holdings ( ARMH).

Apple may also extend the battery life on the iPhone. The iPhone 5 has 8 hours of browsing time on LTE networks, 8 hours of talk time and 10 hours of talk time.

There's always speculation that Apple will do something with payments processing, especially as it looks to build up its software and services revenue. On Apple's fiscal second-quarter earnings call, Apple CEO Tim Cook answered Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster's question, saying the payments space is just getting started. "I think it's in its infancy, Gene," Cook said on the call. "I think it's just getting started and just out of the starting block."

Whatever and wherever Apple does indeed make the announcement, it'll likely capture the interest and imagination of the media, consumers, Wall Street and perhaps the world alike. That's "one more thing" worth waiting for.

-- Written by Chris Ciaccia in New York

>Contact by Email.

If you liked this article you might like

Cramer: There's More to Tech Than FAANG

Cramer: There's More to Tech Than FAANG

Broadcom's Earnings Call Remarks Suggest More Acquisitions Are On Tap

Broadcom's Earnings Call Remarks Suggest More Acquisitions Are On Tap

Spotify's Big Pre-IPO Investor Presentation: 8 Key Takeaways

Spotify's Big Pre-IPO Investor Presentation: 8 Key Takeaways

FANG Stocks Continue to Rally Hard Even as Broader Market Stumbles

FANG Stocks Continue to Rally Hard Even as Broader Market Stumbles

Why I'm Cashing Out of Square -- For Now

Why I'm Cashing Out of Square -- For Now