Tuesday, January 28, 2014

iPhone 6 Rumors "iPhone 6 Air"

Are you sitting comfortably? Good. This could take a while. The iPhone 5S is less than six months old, but rumors are gathering about its replacement, which should – if previous versions are anything to go by – be called the iPhone 6. Will it be bigger, or stay the same size? Will it have standout features? Will it be joined by an iPhone 6C, or the iWatch?

None of these questions and many more will be answered until Tim Cook takes the stage later this year, but we can’t wait until June or September. We’re just not that patient. So, we’ve collected all the latest gossip we’ve heard right here. We hope you enjoy.

Surprise … it’s probably named iPhone 6

How long can Apple keep adding an ever-increasing number to the name of its latest iPhone? It gave up with the iPad after two models, and decided to add the word Air to the most recent iteration, signifying how slim and light it had made the tablet. Depending on the specs of the next iPhone, it could do the same here. 

It could launch as early as May or June

Calm down, man. We haven’t even talked about the specs yet. But, since you’re so keen to know, let’s talk about the release date now. For the last few years Apple has announced its new iPhone around September or October. A sensible gambling man would bet on this trend repeating in 2014.
Juniper estimates 5+ inch devices will see sales of 120 million by 2018.

Just before Christmas, DigiTimes chimed in with some anonymous gossip from within the supply chain, saying Apple plans to release its next iPhone for May 2014, just seven months after the iPhone 5S went on sale. (No, it doesn’t sound all that likely to us.) Tech industry observer Eldar Murtazin disagrees, and tweetedthat Apple is eyeing a June release, so it can better battle new Android phones from Samsung and HTC. Jefferies analyst Peter Misek also said a June or late summer release is possible.

Why all the excitement over a June launch? It’s the month during which Apple is expected to hold its annual Worldwide Developer Conference. The iPhone has been absent from WWDC for years, and rumors of its return crop up often. Will 2014 be the year they come true, or must we wait until after summer once again?

Bigger screens, more iPhones

Wow. You’re eager. We’re getting to the screen. Apple has made the most of a 4-inch screen for two generations (years) now, and while it’s perfectly acceptable – go on, admit it – there’s no denying the industry is shifting towards smartphones with considerably larger displays. Juniper Research estimates that devices with 5+ inch screens will see sales of 120 million by 2018, considerably more than the 20 million in 2013. Surely Apple can’t ignore the trend much longer?

We may get a 4.7-inch iPhone and a 5.7-inch iPhone/iPad hybrid.

According to Chinese analyst Sun Changxu, Apple may keep its current 1136 x 640 pixel Retina resolution on the 4.7-inch screen. This would see the pixel density fall to around 280ppi, way below the 326ppi seen on every iPhone since the iPhone 4. Crucially though, it would be above the iPad’s pixel density. Apple bases its Retina status on viewing distance – 10-inches for the phone, 15 for the tablet – so a larger phone screen could add a few inches to the optimum viewing distance, and keep it within Apple’s self-imposed parameters for ‘Retina.’

Alternatively, researchers from DisplaySearch in Taiwan indicate Apple will give the 4.7-inch screen a 1280 x 720 pixel resolution, resulting in a 312ppi pixel density rating. As for the 5.7-inch hybrid, DisplaySearch says it may have a 1920 x 1080 pixels, matching just about every 2013 high-end Android phone. 

n increase to 4.7 or 5.7-inches isn’t universally agreed upon – not even close. Peter Misek says Apple will plump for 4.8-inches, while a Wall Street Journal reporter claimed Apple was busily testing hybrid devices with 6-inch screens. Long-time Apple rumor devotees will recall talk of the iPhone Math (or iPhone+, as it may have really been known), a monster-sized iPhone discussed before the announcement of the iPhone 5S.

It’s worth considering that prototype iPhones probably exist with all these screen sizes. Apple may have tested them all out at one time, or has made a few to throw us off track. Just because they exist though, doesn’t mean they’ll make it into production.

Super slim 6mm body

That’s a very good question, and one which fits in with the idea Apple may chose to name the next model the iPhone Air. The iPhone has never been a bloater, but rumors have spread the next generation may be much thinner than before. Korean news source ETNews.com quotes sources from the Chinese IT media, who say Apple may shave 1.6mm off the iPhone 5S’ thickness to make a 6mm iPhone.

A Chinese website published a picture of what it claimed was the iPhone 6’s chassis. It looks both slim and large, but it could also be completely fake, or not related to the iPhone at all. Only time will tell on this one.

Better camera and iOS 8

There are a few rumors regarding the introduction of 802.11ac Wi-Fi, which came to Mac computers recently, along with a 128GB storage capacity. The camera could get an upgrade to 13-megapixels, although not everyone agrees, with others indicating the existing 8-megapixel camera will see improvements.

The iPhone 6 will logically come with iOS 8 installed, and although nothing has been heard about it at this early stage, it’ll be interesting to see where Apple takes its newly redesigned OS next.

Solar sapphire screens and no Home button at all

Here’s one of the crazier theories around. The next iPhone(s) could have sapphire screens with a special solar layer inside them that will help keep the iPhone charged. It’s not as implausible as you might think, either.

Almost a year ago, GT Advanced, which now has a major contract with Apple, showed us how sapphire could make smartphone screens nearly indestructible. At the time, the company told us that if a large vendor used sapphire to scale, its price would get cheap enough to integrate into a major product. A $578 million contract with Apple is probably enough to do just that. Reportedly, Apple is creating a facility in Arizona to build these components.

Then comes solar charging screens, which we saw demonstrated at CES this year. Though 3M and SunPartner told us that their screens wouldn’t be ready until 2015, Matt Margolis of Seeking Alpha believes that this type of solar screen is being built in the Arizona facility. While he could be right, we’re uncertain this innovation will appear on the iPhone 6, especially given the rumors of how thin it will be. There’s little room for more screen layers in a 6mm phone.

Sapphire screens aside, meaning those less likely to come true, we’ve got an old report which talks about the abolishment of the Home button. Instead, some believe that the new phone will rely more on gesture controls to navigate around the OS. It sounds plausible, but Apple will have to find somewhere else to put its new fingerprint sensor, something which wasn’t known when this aging report was published. A Forbes article by Anthony Kosner suggests Apple’s upcoming mobile payments platform will integrate a Touch ID fingerprint sensor into the entire screen of the next (big) iPhone, eliminating the need for a Home button. Again though, this will add yet another layer to the thickness of the screen, which diminishes speculation that this will be a super thin 6mm phone.
It’s also possible the iPhone 6 will have the first liquidmetal chassis. This has been a long-standing rumor, and while Apple has filed many new patents related to the technology, it’s still considered a challenging material with which to work.

Oh, and one more thing…

Yes, there could, and it may be the iWatch. If Apple is going to come out with its own interpretation of the smartwatch this year, it makes sense for it to launch alongside the latest phone. We’ve pulled together all the talk about the iWatch here, so make sure you take a look. 

The iPhone 5S was joined by the iPhone 5C when it was announced in 2013, and unless Apple deems the experiment a failure, we should see the iPhone 6C up on stage. However, at the moment, all the attention is being lavished on its more expensive sister phone, the 5S.

That’s about all we have for now (but considering it’s the beginning of 2014, it’s actually rather a lot), but we’ll be updating this article regularly with more juicy iPhone 6 talk.

All information and images does not belong or relate in anyway to BYTE ME, LLC.

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