Apple suppliers 'ready to start on larger iPhone 6'
Apple suppliers will begin mass producing displays for the next iPhone as early as May, with a 4.7-inch screen likely to be produced first while a 5.5-inch version could be delayed, supply chain sources said.
The new phone is expected to be launched this autumn.
Japan Display, Sharp Corp and South Korea's LG Display have all been tapped to make the screens, said the sources. Representatives for the three suppliers and for Apple declined to comment.
Both iPhone 6 screens will be larger than the 4.0-inch panels on Apple's existing iPhone 5S and 5C models, pictured below.
Larger iPhones, the subject of months of speculation, would mark yet another incremental tweak to the popular smartphone line and an attempt to catch up to rivals like Samsung.
The company that helped to define American technology innovation is under increasing pressure to once again revolutionise the gadget industry, but CEO Tim Cook, while promising only "new product categories" for 2014, has played his cards close to his chest.
Apple's shares have languished below $600 since November 2012, in part because of worries about smartphone market saturation.
Both iPhone 6 screens are expected to use in-cell touch panel technology – built into the screen and allowing for thinner construction than with standard touch panel films – that was introduced with the iPhone 5, the sources said. They added that due to difficulties with in-cell production technology for the 5.5-inch size, a decision was made to begin production with the 4.7-inch version alone. (Reuters)