Going by Apple’s annual upgrade cycle, the iPhone 7 is at least 16 months away from launch. But there have already been plenty of rumors about the device. The Cupertino company is expected to release the iPhone 6S and 6S Plus this year. Apple surprised the markets by moving to OLED with Apple Watch. But the tech giant will stick to LCD panels for the iPhone 7, says JPMorgan analyst Narci Chang.
OLED in the iPhone 7 seems improbable
Apple Insider obtained a copy of Chang’s research note. JPMorgan believes that Apple is not fully prepared to switch from LCD to OLED technology for the high-volume iPhone lineup. So, the company will “use LCD panels through the iPhone 7.” Earlier this month, Japan Display announced that it would build a new $1.4 billion LCD plant in central Japan.
The facility will be partially funded by Apple in exchange for exclusive access to the plant’s output. The new facility will have the capacity to produce 95 million units of LTPS-based LCD panels per year. Apple’s biggest supplier Foxconn is also reportedly investing $2.6 billion in a new LCD facility in Taiwan. These multi-billion dollar investments make OLED in iPhone 7 an improbable scenario, believes Narci Chang.
JPMorgan’s report contradicts Japanese newspaper
In January, Japanese newspaper Nikkan Kogyo Shimbun claimed that the iPhone 7 would feature OLED display, marking a major shift from the traditional LCD screens. The Cupertino company was rumored to introduce sapphire glass with the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus. But its main sapphire supplier GT Advanced failed to produce high-quality sapphire in large quantities, forcing Apple to abandon that plan.
The iPhone 7 is expected to arrive in late 2016. The device will reportedly feature a new three-sensor camera technology that will significantly improve the quality of still images and videos. Other expected features include a built-in Apple SIM card and Force Touch technology. Force Touch can recognize between a simple tap and a hard press, allowing users to interact with the interface more easily.