Apple could enhance Touch ID with trackpad capabilities, embed sensor right into display

By Christian Zibreg on Nov 25, 2013

Last week, Patently Apple shed light on an Apple patent filed with the United States Patent and Trademark Office which covers the various aspects of its Touch ID fingerprint scanner, a new feature exclusive to the iPhone 5s.

The invention is entitled Capacitive Sensor Packaging and details collapsing the full fingerprint maps into a hashed, encrypted data securely stored on the A7 chip’s Secure Enclave. It’s curious that the patent’s main inventor, Wayne Westerman, developed Multi-Touch technology at Fingerworks, a startup Apple snapped up in 2005.

In another massive 612-page patent application Apple filed with the World Intellectual Property Organization in May 2013, the iPhone maker indicates it’s been researching mobile screens with Touch ID embedded, along with trackpad capabilities allowing for panning of on-screen content by moving your finger over the Touch ID Home button… Read More

 

Retina iPad mini teardown: LG Display Retina panel, larger battery, A7 and more

By Christian Zibreg on Nov 13, 2013

Yesterday, I wondered on Twitter what was taking the repair magicians over at iFixit so long to do their ritual teardown of Apple’s stealthily-released iPad mini with Retina display. My prayers have been listened to as iFixit has torn apart the device, revealing its guts and components for the whole world to see. As you could imagine, they found an Apple-designed A7 chip inside, slightly underclocked versus the iPad Air.

On top of that, there are usual suspects in terms of wireless and supporting chips. As for the titular update to this iPad mini – the Retina display – the teardown analysis has identified an LG Display-supplied 7.9-inch in-plane switching LCD with a 2,048-by-1,536 screen resolution.

While the resolution is the same as the iPad 3/4/Air, the images are crisper at 326 pixels per inch (264 ppi on the iPad Air) due to a shrunken form factor, as noted MacStories editor Federico Viticci noted in his hands-on article.

Other tidbits follow… Read More

 

Bloomberg: curved-screen jumbo-sized iPhones coming in 2014

By Christian Zibreg on Nov 10, 2013

We’ve been hearing a lot lately about jumbo-sized iPhones, but the iPhablet meme is so passé now. So how about a curved-screen iPhone? I’m not talking about a Galaxy Round type of device – according to a new Bloomberg report, a large-screen iPhone featuring a flat screen with the cover glass “that curves downward at the edges” is in the works.

This sounds a lot like the Lumia range as the high-end Nokia devices sport slightly curved screen edges. Note that this is the first time we’ve heard the curved-screen iPhone being mentioned by a major big media publication. The Bloomberg article also mentions two large-screen models planned for release in the second half of next year and a new pressure-sensitive screen technology. Jump past the fold for the full reveal… Read More

 

Quality issues reportedly prompt Apple to cozy up to Samsung for iPad screens

By Christian Zibreg on Aug 7, 2013

It’s no secret Apple’s been working around the clock to decrease its reliance on Samsung for components. I’m also sure you know the two frenemies have been entangled in a complicated web of lawsuits the world over for two years. Now, various market repots have indicated Apple months ago showed Samsung the door by introducing other mobile display makers to the iPad supply chain, namely LG Display and Sharp.

In an interesting reversal, research firm NPD DisplaySearch said Wednesday it believed Samsung actually gained on the iPad screen supplier LG Display because Apple in April and June reportedly sourced more 9.7-inch iPad panels from LG Display than from Samsung… Read More

 

As Apple misses a beat, Amazon is Retina-fying Kindle lineup

By Christian Zibreg on Jul 25, 2013

Hot on the heels of yesterday’s Google event which saw, among other goodies, introduction of the second-generation Nexus 7 tablet with an improved 1,920-by-1,200 screen, the Kindle maker Amazon is now said to be refreshing its Fire tablet family around higher-resolution displays, too.

And as Apple and its Asian suppliers scramble to solve manufacturing challenges that continue to plague a second-generation iPad mini, Amazon’s top-of-the-line Kindle reportedly features a significantly overhauled display that packs 30 percent more pixels than the Retina iPad, into a smaller 8.9-inch screen compared to Apple’s 9.7-inch device. Ouch! Read More

 

Ongoing challenges forcing Apple to buy Retina iPad mini screens from Samsung?

By Christian Zibreg on Jul 23, 2013

Run for years by the then op-chief Tim Cook, Apple’s supply chain has become the stuff of the legend. Would-be watchers naively believe deciphering Apple’s next move is as easy as keeping tabs on the chatter coming out of Asia’s supply chain. Tim Cook, of course, begs to differ: on one of conference calls, Apple’s boss cautioned investors against drawing conclusion from any one data point as the company’s supply chain is a very complex beast.

So here’s something for investors and fans to chew on: ET News reported Tuesday that Apple is considering tapping Samsung Display to produce low-power Retina screens for the upcoming second-generation iPad mini because AU Optronics (AUO) was unable to deliver. Samsung would presumably make the screens alongside LG Display, Sharp and perhaps Japan Display, according to a previous February 2013 reportRead More

 

Apple now offering in-store $149 replacement screens for iPhone 5

By Christian Zibreg on Jun 3, 2013

A recent MarketWatch article has blamed high iPhone 5 repair costs on Apple’s tight control of the supply chain, which in turn dictates aftermarket prices.

Perhaps responding to the criticism, the company has reportedly started selling a replacement screen component for the iPhone 5 for $149.

Tipsters claim that the replacement display is offered in-store only, with or without AppleCare+.

Although $149 is notably higher than the corresponding iPhone 4S screen assembly which costs about $95, Apple’s asking price undercuts the repair wizards over at iFixit who offer an iPhone 5 replacement screen for $200.

And in response to Apple’s competitive pricing, some service shops are now starting to tweak their repair rates accordingly… Read More

 

DigiTimes: 33 percent lighter iPad 5 on track for September release

By Christian Zibreg on May 20, 2013

DigiTimes, the-sometimes-reliable Taiwanese trade publication, on Monday ran a report which quotes sources with Taiwan’s supply chain who claim that a fifth revision to Apple’s full-size 9.7-inch iPad will be 25-33 percent lighter than its previous generation.

The fifth-generation iPad is believed to be entering trial production next month, meaning the device should be on track for a rumored September launch. Initial output is pegged at up to three million units until Apple and its manufacturing partners reach yield levels necessary to ramp up production… Read More

 

Apple ostensibly sampling 1.5-inch iWatch screens

By Christian Zibreg on May 20, 2013

The pretty accurate Japanese blog Macotakara passes along a pair of Taiwanese reports claiming that Apple is now evaluating and sampling tiny screens for its rumored smartwatch, affectionately dubbed by the media as iWatch. Apple’s technologies chief Bob Mansfield, who is believed to have taken particular interest in wearable technology, along with a team of 100+ engineers are reportedly evaluating 1.5-inch screens based on OLED (Organic Light-Emitting Diode).

OLED is important because it doesn’t require a backlight so it’s more batter-friendly than a liquid crystal display (LCD). Additionally, OLED screens render deeper black levels and are thinner and lighter than LCDs, which are major feats for small form-factor wearable gadgets like smartwatches… Read More

 

Display shootout: iPhone 5 vs Galaxy S4

By Christian Zibreg on Apr 26, 2013

CEO Tim Cook during an earnings call re-iterated Apple very much remains focused on providing the highest quality mobile screens and argued his company would never compromise the experience by creating a Gorilla-sized iPhone with a subpar display. Specifically, Cook painted color reproduction, power consumption, quality and other factors determining the quality of a mobile screens as progressively suffering on larger displays.

“We would not ship a larger display iPhone while these trade-offs exist,” he said Tuesday. But is that really the case? Display wizards over at DisplayMate took Apple’s iPhone 5 and Samsung’s Galaxy S4 through a battery of tests putting the screens through their paces. The results are surprising… Read More

 

Apple won’t use Samsung screens for iPad 5 and iPad mini 2

By Christian Zibreg on Mar 20, 2013

In another hint of Apple distancing itself from Samsung by procuring crucial gadget components from alternative suppliers, we hear the Cupertino firm may have already dropped Samsung entirely as the maker of next-gen panels for a fifth-generation iPad and a second-generation iPad mini.

Both devices are rumored to arrive later this year, allegedly sporting the high-resolution Retina display technology and sharing a light aluminum chassis with thinner appearance and chamfered edges… Read More

 

Meet the GLAS.t Slim, a thinner and lighter glass screen protector for iPhone 5

By Sébastien Page on Mar 7, 2013

I have a hard time hiding my love for the GLAS.t family of screen protectors for one simple reason: I just think they’re the best. A few months ago I reviewed the GLAS.t, which I believed was the best screen protector for iPhone 5, but things just got even better!

The fine folks over at SGP sent me their new GLAS.t Slim for iPhone 5 for review. I’ve been sporting it for a little over a week now and I’m here to give you a quick review of the product… Read More

 

How to change an iPhone 5 screen in 3 minutes

By Sébastien Page on Jan 26, 2013

In the DIY category, this one might come in handy to those of you who accidentally dropped their iPhone 5 and broke the screen. In this video, we are showed how to change the iPhone 5 screen in just about 3 minutes.

Note that the iPhone 5 screen is integrated with the digitizer and is replaced with the entire front assembly. Of course, you’ll need a few tools to do the job, namely a Pentalobe screwdriver, a plastic pry tool, and a suction cup, all of them available for less than $3 on Amazon. Of course, you’ll also need the digitizer frame assembly as well.

 

Apple wins patent for new automatically adjusting screen brightness technology

By Oliver Haslam on Jan 24, 2013

It’s well known that Apple likes to throw as many patent applications at the wall as possible, with the belief that at least some will stick. The latest to receive the seal of approval from the powers that be is patent number US8358273, or “Portable media device with power-managed display,” as its friends know it.

The patent features a new technology that will control the screen brightness of a piece of equipment such as an iPhone or iPad based on the type of content being displayed. Currently, devices set the screen brightness based on the amount of ambient light. Apple’s recently approved patent changes all that.

As far as screen brightness technology goes, this is actually rather interesting… Read More

 

Apple again seen cutting iPhone 5 panel orders

By Cody Lee on Jan 21, 2013

Last week, a couple of reports surfaced claiming that Apple has been trimming component orders for its iPhone 5. While the exact reasons for the cutbacks are still unknown, many market-watchers are citing weaker-than-expected demand as the main factor.

But no matter what the reasoning is, it seems the cuts are happening. Another report popped up this weekend claiming that the Cupertino company has contacted Sharp Corp. and asked them to cut their iPhone 5 LCD panel orders in half for next quarter… Read More

 

Apple’s Forstall says iPhone 5 keyboard flickering is a software glitch, promises fix

By Christian Zibreg on Oct 22, 2012

If a growing thread on Apple’s discussion forum is anything to go by, a bunch of iPhone 5 owners continue to complain about an annoying flickering thing which apparently manifests itself when the software keyboard pops up on the App Store password entry dialog box.

A report out this morning first suggested that an incremental iOS 6.0.1 update, said to have entered testing, will fix this and other issues plaguing the iOS 6 software. iDB has now received another confirmation that a fix is in the works, via an alleged email exchange between a reader and Apple’s SVP Scott Forstall who’s in charge of the iOS platform… Read More

 

Microsoft: Surface screen outperforms the iPad Retina display

By Ed Sutherland on Oct 17, 2012

Microsoft is nothing if not an expert when it comes to spinning technology. Take for instance the software giant’s latest comments that its Surface tablet actually outperforms the iPad’s Retina display. You remember the Retina, the display with 3.9 million pixels and described by some as the best display ever for a mobile device?

Well, turns out the Surface’s 1,366-by-768 display is even better at something called “perceived resolution.” Microsoft engineer Steve Bathiche told a Reddit audience this week that the tablet’s ClearType technology can reduce the glare from reflected light. The Surface’s display reflects between 5.5 percent and 6.2 percent of light, compared to 9.9 for the iPad, according to the engineer… Read More

 

This is the best screen protector for your iPhone 5

By Sébastien Page on Oct 10, 2012

A few months ago, I reviewed the GLAS.t for iPhone 4S. At the time, I believed it to be the best screen protector for iPhone. Fast forward to this date, and I still have yet to see a better alternative to protect the screen of your iPhone.

If the iPhone has changed since my original GLAS.t review, something that hasn’t changed is the quality and reliability of the screen protector. The folks at Spigen SGP are pretty smart. They know I love their products so they sent me a GLAS.t for iPhone 5 for review. Spoiler alert: it’s 99% positive… Read More

 

For some, screen flickers when the iPhone 5 keyboard pops up

By Christian Zibreg on Oct 8, 2012

Following the purple haze camera issue, the WiFi bug affecting cellular data usage, Scuffgate, Mapgate, light leaks and other teething problems, some early adopters are now reporting a new glitch related to the iPhone 5’s virtual keyboard.

Apparently, it’s randomly inconveniencing an unknown proportion of users whose device exhibits an annoying glitch where some parts of the keyboard show random noise and broken lines, like old TV sets attuned to the snow white frequency… Read More

 

iPhone 5 vs iPhone 4S Screen – Stock Apps Comparison

By Jeff Benjamin on Sep 25, 2012

If you’ve yet to lay eyes on an iPhone 5, or compare the iPhone 5 to stock apps running on lesser iPhone hardware, then this video is for you.

Inside, we take a look at the majority of the stock iPhone apps, and compare them side-by-side running on the iPhone 5 and iPhone 4S hardware. Besides the obvious added spacing, most of the differences are fairly subtle.

One thing you will notice, however, is that keyboard keys are slightly larger, and there’s more room on screen to see content like messages, and message composition panes. Simply put, once you get used to the iPhone 5’s roomier screen, anything less seems claustrophobic. Read More