Electronics

What to expect in the next Apple iPhone

As of March 2014, there are photos and rumours abound on the Internet speculating about the next Apple iPhone to be released. Most people are referring to the next version as the iPhone 6. Apple is still currently one of the most popular mobile phones used by people living in Ghana, the United States and other countries throughout the world. Anyone planning on buying a mobile phone within the next year should consider some of the rumours and possibilities regarding the new iPhone 6.

The Release Date

The usual speculation about an iPhone release in May or during the summer has already surfaced, but most of the tangible evidence available rules this early time-frame out as an impossibility. Recent supplier activity and historical trends suggest that the typical third-quarter release of the new iPhone is the most common scenario.

Reuters has already reported that Pegratron, the company that assembles the iPad and iPhone, has opened a new factory in China and is currently recruiting new workers to help fulfil orders to manufacture the iPhone 6. Production for the new iPhone is supposed to begin during the second quarter of 2014. Many believe that iOS 8 may be unveiled at an Apple conference in May. The new iPhone is expected to be unveiled in September. Industry experts believe there will be two noticeably different versions of the next iPhone model made available to consumers.

New Surface

Reporters have found evidence that indicates Apple may be changing some of the materials used for the surface of the next iPhone. During November 2013, GT Advanced Technologies received $578 million from Apple in exchange for assistance with producing mass quantities of sapphire. Apple has been using a thin layer of Corning Gorilla Glass on the iPhones since 2007. This recent investment suggest that Apple may be switching to sapphire for its next version of the iPhone. Sapphire is typically used on luxury watches because the material is scratch resistant and more durable than glass. Apple already uses sapphire for the fingerprint sensor on the 5S and on the camera lens.

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The earnings report indicates that GT Advanced Technologies expects $500 to $700 million during the second half of 2014 and more than $1 billion in revenue during 2015 from shifting its operations to focus on the Apple contract. Some analysts believe that sapphire touchscreens would be far too expensive for mass production. However, reports have surfaced that Apple has already invested in several furnaces capable of forging 5-inch screens composed of sapphire. There are also reports that the equipment purchased from GT Advanced may be enough to produce 100 to 200 million 5-inch display screens.

However, the CEO of Corning Glass claims that replacing the screens with sapphire would make the new iPhones at least 1.6 times heavier and 10 times more expensive. He also claims that a sapphire face would use 100 times more energy as well– thus implying that battery life may suffer ultimately.

There are also rumours circulating that Apple may make the screen pressure-sensitive in the newer version of the iPhone. Apple has already filed a patent, “Touch-sensitive button with two levels”, that enables the touchscreen to detect various degrees of pressure. This indicates that certain commands on the new iPhones may be controlled by how hard consumers press on the screen. This new patent may affect the selection process when viewing the iOS settings, different menu screens or when playing games. This technology could help free up space on the new iPhone screen by requiring less buttons in each app or menu selection.

New Sizes

Reports from China indicate that Apple may plan to release two versions of the new iPhone. The traditional model of the iPhone is expected to increase to 4.7 inches. The new phablet-sized iPhone is expected to be around 5.7 inches. These reports have been corroborated by insider sources from Foxconn and reporters at the Wall Street Journal. According to industry analysts, Apple has been developing the design for a larger version of the iPhone for more than a year.

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According to Apple CEO Tim Cook, the tech firm has its sight set on the phablet market, but they’re not prepared to rush anything without the performing the appropriate amount of due diligence first. Aside from the size, Cook noted that Apple also has to consider adjustments in contrast, reliability, resolution and clarity in revamped version.

Adjusting Display

According to Business Insider, Apple may also plan to upgrade the quality of the picture by switching to Quantum Dot display. This technique utilizes nanocrystals made from semiconductors that give the appearance of “quantum effects” on the screen. Interestingly enough, the components used in Quantum Dot display are actually smaller than the biological components of the average virus.

Colours on the screen are brighter with this technique because light frequencies that can be specifically tuned are created with this technology. The ability to tune light frequencies also creates more accurate renditions of true colour in comparison to other techniques. Quantum Dot display is the same technology used in the Amazon Kindle Fire HDX. The CEO of Nanosys expects Apple to have its Quantum Dot display up and running midway through 2014.

No More Bezel
Rumours that Apple is eliminating the bezel in the new version of the iPhone have already surfaced from Korea. The bezel on the iPhone is the outer-ring that borders the front face of the phone. The bezel in the iPhone 5 is formed as the front face of the phone fits into the outer casing of the phone, which encompasses the back and front bezel around the screen.

Eliminating the bezel in the iPhone 6 should allow Apple to create more viewing space on the screen without increasing the size of the phone even more. The design would be similar to that of the Samsung Galaxy Note 3 or S4. Some mock photos show that the bezel on the sides of the new version are gone, while the bezel on the top and bottom are minimised.

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Upgrading Battery Life
A patent titled “Inferring user intent from battery usage level and charging trends” may indicate that Apple intends to upgrade the battery function in the new version of the iPhone. Apple may be to improve battery efficiency by creating software that learns when and how individual consumers are using the most or least amount of energy with their iPhone. The patent states that this would be an automated function that operate in the background without any intervention required by the iPhone users.

The power management system may be able to learn to identify when usage is unusually high in comparison to the average, and then compensate accordingly to extend battery life until the next charge. The system would also communicate and monitor app usage in order to specifically calibrated power usage to the individual users habits or tendencies.

It seems there is always an abundance of rumours surrounding the impending release of the new iPhone. Many times, its hard for the average consumer to separate fact from fiction. However, the aforementioned rumours about the new iPhone 6 are predominantly sourced from either patents filed by Apple, supplier activity and reports of new partners or transactions.

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