It has been widely accepted Apple’s rumoured 5.5-inch iPhone 6 will not launch later this year – but the delay was previously blamed on manufacturing problems.
The latest reports, however, are blaming this staggered release date on Apple’s marketing strategy, and suggest the tech giant is feeling vulnerable against rivals such as Samsung and HTC.
Tech site Digitimes claims Apple will look to maximise sales of its next range of iPhones by releasing them in stages.
It has been widely accepted Apple’s rumoured 4.7-inch iPhone 6 (concept pictured left) will debut in September, with the 5.5-inch model launching in 2015. This was blamed on manufacturing problems. The latest reports, instead, are blaming this staggered release date on Apple’s marketing strategy
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This is so the devices don’t go head-to-head in the same way the iPhone 5S and 5C did last year.
Sources ‘familiar with the matter’ told Digitimes: ‘The different timetables have been set as Apple does not want to repeat the mistake it made in 2013 when it launched the iPhone 5S and iPhone 5C simultaneously.’
But Apple expert Ben Lovejoy from 9to5Mac dubbed these reports as ‘spurious’: ‘Apple’s iPhone sales numbers in no way suggest it made a ‘mistake’ in launching the iPhone 5S and 5C simultaneously.’
He continued that although there is evidence that the balance of sales between the two devices differed, in favour of the iPhone 5S, this may be because people preferred to buy the more expensive model.
His claims are also bolstered by the fact Apple sold 35.2 million iPhone handsets in the past three months – an increase of 13 per cent following strong performance in China.
This was despite a nine per cent slump in iPad sales.
The initial reports about the delay blamed it on issues with manufacturing the glass and case needed for the larger screens.
Sources ‘familiar with the matter’ said: ‘The different timetables have been set as Apple does not want to repeat the mistake it made in 2013 when it launched the iPhone 5S (pictured front) and iPhone 5C (pictured back) simultaneously’
But Apple site 9to5Mac questioned the reports: ‘Apple’s iPhone sales numbers in no way suggest it made a ‘mistake’ in launching the iPhone 5S and 5C (pictured) simultaneously.’ This is bolstered by Apple figures that show it sold 35.2 million iPhone handsets in the past three months – up 13%
Apple has traditionally touted the benefits of smaller screens, and its devices typically have a 4-inch display.
Apple’s larger screens are expected to use in-cell technology that will make the screens thinner and lighter by adding touch sensors to the liquid crystal display.
Current models have a separate touchscreen layer.
Elsewhere, the 5.5-inch iPhone screen is expected to be made of sapphire crystal, rather than glass.
Due to the complex nature of these screens, reports claim Apple could even ask component makers to prepare for 120 million displays, to account for any faults and replacements that need to be issued.
Suppliers claim Apple has ordered between 70 and 80 million units combined for its rumoured, upcoming 4.7-inch and 5.5-inch iPhone 6s (leaked images pictured) by 30 December. The reports come after iPhone maker Foxconn confirmed it has hired 100,000 new workers to manufacture the gadgets
This report appears to contradict earlier claims the larger ‘phablet’ sized iPhone 6 won’t ship until 2015.
Meanwhile, a separate report claimed the tech giant is said to be so confident its upcoming iPhone 6 will be a success, it has ordered 80 million handsets by the end of the year.
If true, this would be the largest initial production run of iPhones – up from 60 million for the iPhone 5S and 5C last year.
This suggests either Apple will release two handsets by the end of the year, or is expecting the 4.7-inch model to be a third more popular than its previous handsets combined.
Suppliers claimed the Californian firm has asked for between 70 and 80 million units combined for the rumoured 4.7-inch and 5.5-inch iPhone 6s by 30 December.