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Choosing an iPhone 5 carrier

One of the most important aspects of a handset's overall user experience is which carrier it's operating on.

Now that T-Mobile is offering the device, the iPhone 5 is finally available on all four major U.S. carriers. (Regional networks like U.S. Cellular, Cricket Wireless, and C Spire sell the handset as well.)

Each of these four networks -- AT&T, Verizon, Sprint, and T-Mobile -- have different plans, prices, and bundles. In addition, T-Mobile's iPhone in particular comes with a number of differences compared to the others. However, with all the little nuanced phone … Read more

Display tech, 4G hikes iPhone 5 cost to $199

A preliminary analysis puts the iPhone 5's cost at $199, slightly more than the iPhone 4S.

The virtual teardown by IHS iSuppli puts the bill of materials, or BOM, at $199 for the low-end model with 16GB of NAND flash memory.

After factoring in the $8 manufacturing cost, the cost to produce the phone increases to $207, iSuppli said.

The BOM jumps to $209 for the 32GB version of the phone and $230 for the high-end 64GB version, the market researcher said.

"The iPhone 5's components are expected to be slightly more expensive compared to the iPhone … Read more

iPhone 5 vs. Galaxy S3 vs. Lumia 920: By the numbers

Update: This story was originally published 09/12/2012 and updated on 9/18/2012 to reflect our full iPhone 5 review, and on 10/2/2012 to add more Lumia 920 launch details. We will update the story again after we review the Nokia Lumia 920.

This holiday season, smartphone shoppers have a tough decision to make. The Apple iPhone 5, Samsung Galaxy S3, and Nokia Lumia 920 are all titans in their space, and competition is fierce. We'll help you break down each phone's strengths and weaknesses to help you make your choice.

Keep in mind … Read more

So, what's new? Comparing the iPhone 4S and iPhone 5

After months of rumors, endless "leaked" images, and tons of analyst reports, Apple finally introduced its latest smartphone, the iPhone 5 last week. In addition to its new look, it also received some hardware and feature updates. To see what changed and what stayed the same, CNET put together this handy comparison chart that stacks up the device with its previous iteration, the iPhone 4S. Take a look and be sure to read our full iPhone 5 review.

iPhone 4S                  &… Read more

Apple, Intel skating to mobile face-off in 2013

With signs that Apple has designed one of the fastest smartphone chips yet, Intel is getting set to rev up its smartphone silicon in 2013.

Performance benchmark site Geekbench is already showing the iPhone 5's dual-core A6 central processing unit (CPU) with roughly twice the performance of the A5 chips in the iPhone 4S and third-generation iPad. And Geekbench also has the A6 edging out the quad-core chip in Samsung's Galaxy S III.

And there may be a quad-core Apple A series chip in the works for 2013, according to Linley Gwennap, the principal analyst at The Linley … Read more

Apple's A6 chip development detailed

How did Apple arrive at the A6 chip in the iPhone 5? A longtime chip analyst documents the long and winding road.

While endorsing a report that the A6 is a unique Apple design, Linley Gwennap, who heads The Linley Group, a chip consultancy, posted a brief history of the A6's chip estimated $500-million-plus development effort in a research note on Saturday.

Some of the history has been documented before, but other parts are not as well known.

Gwennap's firm is the publisher of the Microprocessor Report and it frequently holds conferences on mobile chips.

Here are some … Read more

AT&T: 'Most successful' iPhone 5 launch smashes sales records

AT&T said today that the iPhone 5 has sold faster than any previous model of the Apple smartphone.

The network declined to offer numbers on the first weekend of the iPhone 5 going on sale -- normally reserved for Apple, in which an announcement is expected in the coming days -- but the cell network giant said it set a "sales record" for its first day of pre-orders and over the weekend.

Apple's new smartphone comes with a 4-inch Retina display, global 4G LTE coverage, an improved A6 processor and 1GB memory, and a new … Read more

iPhone 5 benchmarks surface: Performance doubles

The iPhone 5's A6 processor appears to be roughly twice as fast as any chip in an existing iOS product, if results posted by Geekbench prove to be accurate.

The results show a score of 1,601, beating the dual-core A5 and A5X processors in the iPhone 4s and third-generation iPad (Retina), respectively.

Previous benchmarks of the Retina iPad show a score of 794 (iPad with 3G/4G). The iPhone 4S posted a score of 631.

If these iPhone 5 benchmarks are legitimate, they would match Apple's claims. "With the new A6 chip, just about everything you … Read more

iPhone 5 gets more, faster memory, says report

The iPhone 5 sports 1GB of system memory, twice the amount of the iPhone 4S, a chip review site claims.

And it's faster too, said Anandtech in a post on Saturday.

"Roughly 33 percent more peak memory bandwidth than the iPhone 4S, which can definitely help feed the faster [graphics processing unit] and drive the higher resolution display," Anandtech said.

So, how does Anandtech know this? Apple did not hide the markings (see image above) at the Wednesday event, which revealed a Samsung -- manufacturer of the A6 -- part number.

We'll know for sure that … Read more

A6 chip: More Apple, less ARM

Apple's chip investments may have borne native fruit with the A6.

The iPhone 5's A6 may be more of an Apple creation than previous A series chips, according to an updated post by review site Anandtech.

Like Qualcomm, Apple is incorporating more of its in-house expertise into chips. And that means it's getting further away from pure ARM designs. For example, the latest design from U.K.-based ARM is the Cortex A15, which Texas Instruments is using in future chips.

But Apple isn't going that route, according to Anandtech. And that means that past Apple … Read more