iPhone Ramp Up? Analysts Weigh In on Rumors

Analysts are continuing to weigh in on the circulating rumors about Apple.

Prudential's Jesse Tortora (via Seekingalpha) claimed today that the production ramp has already begun on one of the upcoming Apple phones and should be available for sale late in the 1st Quarter of 2007. The smartphone model, however, is not expected until the 3rd quarter of 2007.

According to the report, Tortora also expects Apple to produce the long rumored wide-screen iPod with target release in late 1st Quarter or early 2nd Quarter.

Finally, Tortora makes an interesting suggestion that "Apple may have interest in entering the video game market longer-term" after claiming that there is new evidence that Apple has hired video game designers.

PiperJaffray's Gene Munster (via Appleinsider) offers his analysis of circulating rumors providing a ranking of likelyhood of rumors for the upcoming Macworld San Francisco and beyond. In order of most likely to least, the rumors include: iPhone production ramp up (10/10), iTV (10/10), Candy Bar form-factor to iPhone (9/10), Wireless Touch-Screen iPod (7/10), keyboarded iPhone (7/10), 4GB/8GB models (6/10), 12" Ultraportable MacBook Pro (4/10), Mac OS X 10.5 release at Macworld (3/10) and iChat Mobile Video/IM on iPhone (2/10).

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