Apple has developed a new 4-inch iPhone based on an iPhone 5s with sixth-generation iPod touch features including an A8 chip, 802.11ac Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.1 and an improved FaceTime HD camera with ƒ/2.2 aperture, according to often-reliable Japanese blog Mac Otakara [Google Translate].
Mac Otakara, citing reliable sources, claims the so-called "iPhone 5s Mark II" has entered production and could be shipped at any time. KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo expects the new 4-inch iPhone, which he also believes to be an upgraded iPhone 5s, to launch in the first half of 2016, a launch date corroborated by other recent rumors.
Kuo previously claimed that the next 4-inch iPhone may adopt an A9 processor in order for iOS 9 or iOS 10 smoothly, but his chip-specific prediction appears to be more guesswork rather than information sourced from Apple's supply chain.
Given Mac Otakara's respectable track record, and considering Apple's reported desire to differentiate the new 4-inch iPhone from its flagship iPhone 6s lineup, it is plausible the so-called "iPhone 6c" could be powered by an A8 chip.
Apple will also reportedly withhold 3D Touch from the 4-inch iPhone in order to encourage adoption of the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus.
Follow our iPhone 6c roundup to keep track of the latest news about the 4-inch iPhone.