As far as Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) rumors go, you can always count on DIGITIMES to add a little spice to the mix. The Taiwanese publication frequently reports on rumblings from the Mac maker's supply chain, but its track record is the definition of hit-or-miss.
Well, DIGITIMES is at it again with a fresh report chock-full of questionable claims. Is there anything in here worth believing?
Starting with the strangest
The oddest claim is that Apple is working on new technologies for the familiar logo that is found on all of its products. The Mac maker is supposedly using new laser-cutting and embedding technologies that will make the logo appear 3D and "shine at the edges." This purported new logo will start appearing on Apple products in 2015, starting with the next-generation iMac, according to the report.
While a new Apple logo shouldn't concern investors all that much as it's not a meaningful product upgrade, there is an interesting tidbit here. The report implies that the Retina iMac won't ship until 2015, but Apple is widely expected to unveil the device at an event tomorrow. If so, that would be another rare instance of Apple pre-announcing a product before it is ready for prime time.
Apple has only pre-announced products a handful of times. The original iPhone is probably the most prominent example, announced in January 2007 and shipping in June of that year. Of course, the Apple Watch was announced last month and won't ship until "early 2015."
But Apple also pre-announced the 2012 iMac, which did not ship for another few months as the company worked out kinks related to the friction-stir welding process used to achieve the thinner design. That delay resulted in the only quarter in years in which Apple failed to outgrow the broader PC market, and CEO Tim Cook said iMac unit shipments were down by 700,000 as a result. Could investors see a similar storyline with the Retina iMac?
A tale of two discrepancies
There's another aspect of the DIGITIMES report that directly conflicts with expectations. DIGITIMES claimed Apple will unveil the rumored 12-inch MacBook Air with Retina display tomorrow. Mass production of the high-resolution laptop is supposedly to begin ramping up in November.
Both of these details could be wrong. Re/code has already reported that the Retina MacBook Air won't be rolled out tomorrow, which is very likely a controlled leak on Apple's part. The Wall Street Journal recently said volume production was being pushed back to December so Apple could focus on making iPhones. The WSJ is generally more accurate than DIGITIMES (by a long shot) and it makes sense that iPhones are the priority.
Reading between the lines
The only part of the report that investors should pay any consideration to is the possibility that the Retina iMac will be pre-announced but not ship until 2015. The last time this happened, Apple stopped selling the outgoing models while it waited for the new models to be ready, which hurt unit sales. If it is to pre-announce the Retina iMac, hopefully it will keep selling the current models to mitigate any lost sales.