It used to be that 2014 would see a simultaneous double-iPhone launch until Reuters earlier this week asserted the larger model could get delayed due to production issues with 5.5-inch screens. As a result, only the rumored 4.7-inch model is said to be ready for a launch in September.
A new report from Japan echoes this notion. Apparently mass production of the 4.7-inch iPhone has been tipped to start in July. As for the 5.5-inch model, the story claims the bigger handset is scheduled to enter full production in September, meaning Apple may not be able to release its phablet before the holiday quarter…
The EMSOne story is based on a report by the Industrial & Commercial Times, one of Taiwan’s biggest newspapers. Such turn of events is probably unfortunate, but this is business as usual for Apple.
The company typically employs the waiting tactics until the technology is ready rather than rush out products which aren’t up to its self-imposed standards of quality. When asked about bigger iPhones earlier this year, CEO Tim Cook basically acknowledged this notion.
What we’ve said is that until the technology is ready, we don’t want to cross that line. That doesn’t say we’ll never do it.
We want to give our customers what’s right in all respects – not just the size but in the resolution, in the clarity, in the contrast, in the reliability.
There are many different parameters to measure a display and we care about all those, because we know that’s the window to the software.
Reuters recently attributed the delayed 5.5-inch iPhone production to unspecified manufacturing difficulties associated with in-cell production technology for the larger screen size.
Apple first started using in-cell screens for iPhones with the iPhone 5 in 2012.
Suppliers have recently begun making components for the new iPhones, like Touch ID sensors and chips for liquid-crystal drivers, according to Nikkei.
Japan Display, Sharp and LG Display have all been reportedly tapped to make the 4.7 and 5.5-inch screens for the new handsets, with Japan Display ostensibly first starting production at its main plant in Mobara, in May, with the others ramping up in June.