With the clock rapidly counting down to the Mobile World Congress during which Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. (LON:BC94) (KRX:005930) will unveil the Galaxy S5, its latest flagship smartphone, analysts are looking for any information they can gather on Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) to find out what plans it has to combat the Samsung handset. Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. (LON:BC94) (KRX:005930) clearly has big plans for the S5 based on the spec lists that we’ve heard related to it thus far, so there will be huge pressure on Apple to respond if the iPhone 6 is to retain its image as the most premium and successful smartphone on the market.
Two models for iPhone 6
Thus, the latest rumors that have come out today will be of equal interest to both analysts and fans of the Apple devices. There have been murmurings for some time that the Apple iPhone 6 will be released in two models, and these stories seemed to have received further confirmation from a report in the South China Morning Post.
The article in question cites industry sources close to Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) which indicate that, as has been suspected for some time, there will be a premium version of the iPhone 6 released alongside a more affordable version. Not only will these two models be significantly different in terms of performance, but they will clearly look rather different, as the South China Morning Post divulges that the two separate handsets will have completely different screen sizes.
Separate screen sizes
We can expect to see the premium version of the iPhone 6 featuring a 5.5 inch screen. This display size would put it very much in the same ballpark as the Galaxy S5, which has generally been rumored to be around 5.25 inches in size. This would be a real turnaround for Apple, with the company previously having been satisfied with the iPhone display being slightly smaller than the Galaxy device, relying on other aspects of the handset to attract consumers. Perhaps the talk of a 2K screen for the Galaxy S5 has forced Apple to react strongly.
On top of the most expensive version of the iPhone 6, Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) will release another device intended to perhaps target a different demographic to the premium version of the smartphone. According to these Chinese press reports, the budget version of the iPhone 6 will have a significantly smaller display, around 4.7 inches in size.
This would put the budget device in line with previous iPhones in terms of screen size, and a cheaper iPhone 6 could attract a huge potential market of consumers who are unable or unwilling to shell out for the full size smartphone. It would seem that Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) may be particularly giving consideration to some of its less traditional markets with this device, with the company looking to improve its market penetration in East Asia in particular.
In addition to the screen size, a couple of other details about the new Apple device’s display have also surfaced. Firstly, it was reported that the display within the iPhone 6 will feature a resolution of 441 pixels per inch (ppi), equal to that of the Samsung Galaxy S4. The highest definition Apple currently offers in its smartphones is 326 ppi, so this indicates a real determination to respond to the threat from Samsung.
Aside from the threat from Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. (LON:BC94) (KRX:005930), analysts also believe that Apple is responding to the so-called ‘phablet’ market; devices that can operate as both a tablet and smartphone. There seems to be a general consumer desire in the contemporary marketplace for bigger, higher quality screens, and though the iPhone has many other selling points, it is clearly considered critical that the iPhone 6 responds to the evolving desire of consumers.
Apple to ditch bezel?
Additionally, it has been reported today that the iPhone 6 will ditch bezel in the iPhone 6. This material is used in previous iteration of the iPhone to separate the screen from the edge of the devices. But it seems that a design could be utilized in the iPhone 6 in which the edge of the device is formed by the display glass itself rather than a separate bezel.
This is an interesting prospect, and one which would seemingly require the fingerprint scanner which is a part of existing iPhones to be incorporated into the display itself. In the iPhone 5S, for example, fingerprint scanning is achieved via the home button. At this point in time, Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) is keeping its cards extremely close to its chest, but the Korea Herald insists that the iPhone 6 will be bezel-free.
These latest rumors give us a further indication of what the iPhone 6 might look like when it is released, with analysts generally predicting a release date somewhere between June and September this year.