iPhone Nano / Mini: Smaller and Cheaper iPhone in the Works?

iPhone Nano / Mini: Smaller and Cheaper iPhone in the Works?

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With the strong competition in the mid-range smartphone markets, many would think what the Cupertino-based company, Apple Inc. – is going to introduce this year to fill the gaps left by its high-end yet quite expensive latest iPhone models, particularly the GSM-based and the CDMA-based iPhone 4 devices.

iPhone Nano / Mini (Mock-up)

Reports started popping in which Apple is said to be working on a smaller version of its existing iPhone models. Cult of Mac is saying to have an exclusive source about this intriguing model of the iPhone (codenamed N97), claiming the device to lose “some” of its memory, thus enabling Apple to build a bite-sized version (just about half the size of the latest model) and eventually allowing the company to sell it almost half the price of main iPhones.

By “some” of the memory, we mean ALL of the memory. The iPhone nano will have no memory for onboard storage of media, our source says. It will have only enough memory to buffer media streamed from the cloud.
“I’m talking strictly storage memory here,” said our source.

Though there should be a little on-board memory for the OS and system caching, the iPhone Mini / Nano is rumored to have a little or to absolutely no internal storage and will just rely on cloud-based contents, that is the apps would presumably be distributed similar to SaaS.

The iPhone nano will pull ALL its content from MobileMe. When users buy a movie or TV show on iTunes, it’s available to stream to their iPhone or iPad. The service is based on technology from LaLa.com, a streaming service that Apple bought last spring and then shut down.
“It would be a mostly cloud-based iOS,” said our source.

The said iPhone Mini / Nano will sport an edge-to-edge screen (I think it’s safer to guess we won’t be seeing Home button here), virtual keyboard, and voice-based navigation – and is initially intended for release this summer.

We’ll be looking closely in the development of this story so just stay tuned for more updates. [via]

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