iPhone 6 mockup (Home screen, Sam Beckett 001)

Bloomberg has confirmed a storyline that we have heard for the past several weeks, which is that Apple is preparing to ramp up production of the iPhone 6 in both 4.7-inch and 5.5-inch models. The report specifically claims that the manufacturing process will begin in China next month, with both smartphones likely to be announced and made available in September.

It has long been speculated that Apple is working on two larger iPhone models, although some rumors suggested that the 5.5-inch model might be delayed because of difficulties in the manufacturing process. This report provides further confirmation that the 5.5-inch model could in fact be unveiled alongside the 4.7-inch model in the fall. Read ahead for details… 

Bloomberg adds that Apple would be taking competitors like Samsung and HTC head on with a 5.5-inch iPhone. The handset makers already have smartphones that are within that size range, and consumers in China have been highly receptive towards devices with larger screens. In fact, every 4 in 10 devices running Android sold in China in 2014 had at least a 5-inch screen.

“Apple is getting ready for its annual unveiling of new iPhones after rivals including Samsung Electronics Co. and HTC Corp. released smartphones with displays that are as large as 5.7 inches. Consumers have been gravitating toward larger-screen devices — in China, 40 percent of mobile gadgets based on Google Inc.’s Android operating system that were sold in 2014 had display sizes of more than 5 inches, according to an estimate from Forrester Research.”

It was reported yesterday that Apple manufacturing partners Foxconn and Pegatron have gone on hiring sprees to meet demand for strong iPhone 6 orders. Foxconn in particular was said to be hiring upwards of 100,000 employees from mainland China to assist with assembling the iPhone 6, with it being responsible for manufacturing 70% of iPhone 6 units.

Apple CEO Tim Cook is said to be betting big on a larger iPhone, which could be a significant move towards rejuvenating strong sales of the nearly seven-year-old smartphone. Apple has been hesitant to release iPhones with larger screens in the past, going no larger than the 4-inch iPhone 5s, but its perspective appears to have changed in light of growing competition.

As far as the iPhone 6 is concerned, virtually every single detail about the oft-rumored handset has been leaked. The next-generation smartphone is expected to be larger, thinner and rounder with a resolution of 2,560-by-1,440 pixelsNFC and wireless chargingsoftware-based image stabilizationa relocated power button and more. The device should come with iOS 8 preinstalled.

Which would you prefer: a 4.7-inch or 5.5-inch iPhone?