Unquestionably, the two biggest releases on the cards for Apple in the near future are the iPhone 6s and the iPad Pro. The long rumored high-spec tablet has been hotly anticipated for sometime, as Apple continues to refresh its iPad range. Meanwhile, the iPhone 6s will be the most significant mobile release of 2015; the iPhone series is, of course, iconic in its nature and phenomenally successful in its commercial appeal.
Foxconn central to iPhone 6s and iPad Pro
While Apple may be making significant changes for both the iPhone 6s and iPad Pro, early indications related to these devices is that not much will change with regard to the supply chain. It is expected that the long time Apple manufacturing partner Foxconn has already been lined up to handle the majority of production for both devices. In particular, it has been reported that Foxconn will be the sole manufacturer of the iPad Pro.
This information has emanated from a very reliable source. The infamous analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has suggested that Foxconn will remain central to the production of the future Apple devices, and has also named the release date for both the iPad Pro and iPhone 6s. Kuo believes that the yield rates which have been achieved by Foxconn will ensure that it finds favor with the consumer electronics giant.
Kuo names August for iPhone 6s
According to Kuo, we can expect to see both of these products unveiled in the fall, ahead of a release date probably in late Q3 / early Q4. Kuo specifically names August as a possible date for the unveiling, which would be something of a surprise considering that last year’s iPhone series was announced in September 2014. Obviously if Apple was to announce this device earlier than last year’s iPhone 6s then this would imply an earlier release date for the handset than occurred during 2014.
It is also predicted by Kuo that Apple will not to push to increase the size of either the iPhone 6s or iPhone 6s Plus phablet when the latest iPhone range hits the stores. Kuo believes that Apple will stick to 4.7-inch and 5.5-inch displays, with a roughly 2:1 ratio between the two devices in terms of units available.
Kuo provided his predictions to Taiwan’s China Post, and also made some predictions about the technology which will be included in the range. As has been widely reported elsewhere, Kuo is of the opinion that the new iPhone series will make use of the Force Touch technology found in the Apple Watch and newer MacBooks. This will allow Apple to significantly ramp up the level of control which can be achieved by iPhone users, and is really intended to make the smartphone a more user-friendly device.
Although Kuo is undoubtedly an extremely reliable source on Apple products, and has proven to be extremely accurate with his predictions in the past, this doesn’t mean that the stated release date will necessarily turn out to be correct. Kuo has an exemplary record in predicting hardware specifications and parameters, but has been a wide of the mark with regard to launch dates in the past. For example, Kuo suggested that the Apple Watch would be released in March, which turned out to be one month early.
iPhone 6s / Galaxy Note 5 face-off
It had been reported recently that Apple’s great rival Samsung was also planning to move forward the release of its Galaxy Note 5. This was reportedly intended to enable the Korean manufacturer to have a clear window of opportunity before the iPhone was released. However, it is possible now that this move would not have yielded any significant results, if the iPhone is intended to release earlier in the year. And anyway, Samsung has quashed this rumor, and stated that it doesn’t intend to move the release of the galaxy Note 5 forward at all.
Instead, Apple could conceivably gain some form of advantage by releasing the iPhone 6s earlier in the year, ensuring that it reaches the stores before the Galaxy Note 5 which will be an obvious rival to the 6s. Apple hardly needs any advantages considering the stellar 2014 which it enjoyed, and the excellent figures which it recorded it during the first quarter of 2015. But the company is always seeking growth and outstanding returns, and this strategy could help the iPhone 6s be even more successful than analysts are already expecting.
iOS 9 delays development
However, as stated previously, the opinion of Kuo should not be taken as gospel on this issue, and other news which has emerged recently suggests the complete opposite to his assertions. There have been rumors that the operating system which is surely intended for the iPhone 6s, the brand new version of iOS 9, is suffering from a delay in development.
Apple typically unveils the latest version of its proprietary operating system at its Worldwide Developers Conference, an event which is specifically held in order to introduce the software to potential Apple developers. If this is the case then it could scupper the idea of an earlier iPhone 6s release, and also push back the unveiling date for the iPad Pro as well.
If there are genuine issues with iOS 9, then Apple always has the option of attempting to debug the software once it is released. This is becoming an increasingly common approach to suffer in a wide range of different niches, with numerous video games manufacturers being criticized for releasing unfinished and / or buggy versions of software, and then patching them at a later date.
It is unlikely that Apple would want to go down this route, at least not too blatantly, so this could have an impact on the release date of the iPhone 6s and iPad Pro. It is also notable that iOS 8 was not particularly well received compared to past versions of the Apple operating system, and despite the massive commercial clout that Apple has displayed over the last 12 months, the company will be wanting to make a significant improvement with iOS 9.
So both the iPad Pro and iPhone 6s seem to be up in the air to a certain extent, but we now know more about what we can expect from both devices.