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As Apple is on the home-stretch to expand its family of iPhone smartphones with a more affordable model next week, it is obvious that the company is already working on future generations of iPhones. Based on the latest market rumours, Apple is is pretty serious about increasing the screen diagonal of its smartphones and is currently evaluating different panels.

The unofficial hints about Apple’s evaluations of bigger screen sizes began to spread earlier this year and were not truly surprising: virtually all of Apple’s rivals have smartphones with screen diagonals higher than 4” of the current iPhone 5. What was not clear is what exactly Apple was looking at and therefore what to expect from future smartphone generations. As it turns out, Apple “has begun evaluating a plan” to offer iPhones with screens ranging from 4.8” to as high as 6”, reports the Wall Street Journal.

Apple has always argued that smartphones with larger displays could not be operated comfortably with one hand. Besides, big screens consume a lot of power and thus shorten battery life of a device. Nonetheless, sales of smartphones with 4.8” and even larger displays are growing, which means Apple is losing market share.

Apple’s upcoming iPhone 5S and iPhone 5C are expected to have identical 4” displays. Nonetheless, introduction of the affordable “5C” model clearly breaks Apple’s “single device” approach to iPhone that has existed for over six years now. Therefore, eventually it could adopt multi-size strategy for the smartphone family as well. At the end, the company already offers different models of iPod personal digital media players.

Two big questions that currently exist are how fast Apple can develop a competitive smartphone with a large screen and when it can release the product without harming sales of its iPhone 5S/5C families. While a large screen can be applied to existing iPhone hardware relatively rapidly, it is unlikely that Apple will release such a device next spring only to refresh it next September along with the main lines. As a result, it looks like the next window of opportunity for a large iPhone introduction will occur at the time when the company introduces its eight-generation iPhones, which is likely to happen in September, 2014.  

Apple did not comment on the news-story.

Tags: Apple, iPhone, iOS

Discussion

Comments currently: 4
Discussion started: 09/07/13 01:17:47 AM
Latest comment: 09/07/13 09:47:39 PM
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1. 
of course they will wait for a full version upgrade next september at the earliest.. that said. I agree with this.

"smartphones with larger displays could not be operated comfortably with one hand"

if they get wider, my next refresh will just be an android. iphone is getting a bit stale anyway.
0 0 [Posted by: carigis  | Date: 09/07/13 01:17:47 AM]
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I find it super uncomfortable to hold my phone in the left hand and use the left hand to operate it. I say go for 4.8-5 inch iPhone as the right hand is way quicker for typing/operation while holding the phone with the left hand. One hand holding and operating the phone sounds like a lame excuse for why Apple is behind the curve.
0 0 [Posted by: BestJinjo  | Date: 09/07/13 01:33:24 PM]
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2. 
Anton, a well written article with qualified source information. Well done and keep it up!
2 0 [Posted by: JBG  | Date: 09/07/13 12:21:45 PM]
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3. 
I love my 5" Android phone. 4.8" is also a good size, but to be honest I have found no issue using a bigger phone with 1 hand only. To bad IOS is such a locked OS, and the phone will probably have unchangeable battery and no microSD card again...
2 0 [Posted by: TAViX  | Date: 09/07/13 09:47:39 PM]
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