Rumor mill predicts 4.8-inch ''iPhone Math''

This may be the most bizarre iPhone-related rumor I've seen in... well, a long time. Quoting a China Times story, AppleInsider reports that a 4.8-inch handset dubbed the "iPhone Math" will be released by Apple later this year. The device is said to be one of three handsets on the Mac maker's roadmap for 2013, along with an "iPhone 5S" and another model with a 12-megapixel camera.

While details regarding the mystery device's specifications remain scarce, sources claim it will feature a large display measuring at least 4.8 inches diagonal, almost one inch larger than the current iPhone 5. Form-factor and screen resolution are unknown, though the so-called "iPhone Math" is said to boast an 8-megapixel camera with lenses built by Largan Precision. The Chinese firm has supposedly been tapped to supply some 8 million camera lenses for both the "iPhone 5S" and the "iPhone Math."

As some of AppleInsider's readers have pointed out in the comments, it's possible the device will actually be called the iPhone Max, and China Times just flubbed the transliteration. Apple already has an iPad Mini, so an iPhone Max doesn't sound too out there.

I still find the rumor dubious, though. Apple went so far as to release an ad touting the iPhone 5's display size as perfectly suited to the human hand. I doubt they'd turn around and roll out a jumbo-sized device barely a year later. That, and Apple isn't exactly known for wanton product segmentation; launching three iPhones in one year would be very unlike them.

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