As Apple continues preparations for the release of the iPhone 6S, news regarding the suppliers of this device has emerged. Apple is clearly currently engaged in negotiations which could have a significant impact on the future of the iPhone range.
iPhone 6S arrives at healthy time
Few corporations have ever experienced such a successful year as Apple in 2014, and the release of the iPhone 6S must be seen in this context. Apple is in a position where it could adopt any strategy that it chooses, with a conservative approach possible owing to the success of its existing devices, or the ability to produce something more ambitious certainly not prohibited considering the financial position of the corporation.
In 2014, Apple became the first company in history to achieve a $70 billion market capitalization, knocked off the highest single-quarter profit in recorded business history, and also overtook Samsung in pure mobile device sales. This last statistic was considered to be significant, as Samsung has always relied on vast numbers of affordable handset sales in East Asia. But Apple has become extremely popular in China, and this was certified a significant factor in supplanting Samsung at the head of the global marketplace.
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So Apple enters the usual development, manufacturing and release schedule for the iPhone in extremely rude health. Thus, it is interesting that the company is reportedly currently negotiating with suppliers, as Apple gears up for the release of the iPhone 6S.
Force Touch focus
According to sources close to the Apple supply chain, the consumer electronics giant has this week been looking to increase orders for high-end FPCBs. This particular component is required in order to incorporate the Force Touch technology that was introduced in the Apple Watch.
In order to meet this demand, Apple’s main suppliers, Flexium Interconnect and Zhen Ding Technology, are expecting their revenue to increase significantly in the second half of 2015. It seems increasingly clear that the iPhone 6S will introduce this technology, as it is set to become a standard across the Apple range.
Aside from the iPhone 6S, it has also been reported that Apple will utilize Force Touch technology in the forthcoming iPad Pro. It is thought that Force Touch will enable the iPad Pro to be operated like a conventional computer without requiring an external keyboard. With this top of the range tablet clearly earmarked for Force Touch technology, it would make sense for Apple to first test it out with a slightly less complicated device such as the iPhone.
Force Touch has already proved extremely popular in the Apple Watch, and could be utilized for a much wider range of features and functions in the iPhone 6S. When Apple released its embryonic smartwatch, users could gain control of applications such as Calendar, Music and Messages by pressing firmly on the watch’s display. Different strengths of pressing are registered differently by the device, enabling a wide range of new features to be introduced to the Apple Watch.
In the case of Apple’s MacBook laptop range, the Force Touch technology was incorporated in the trackpad. In order to reflect this design decision, Apple renamed this the Force Touch trackpad. This feature compries four separate sensors which allow the user to click the trackpad and for clicks to be registered based on their strength. When one witnesses the intuitiveness of this feature in the laptop, it becomes quite clear that Apple would love to include this in the forthcoming iPhone 6S.
To differ from Apple Watch
However, Ming-Chi Kuo, a legend in the Apple-following community, has stated that the function of the Force Touch will differ significantly in the iPhone 6S from previous device releases. The KGI analyst suggests that instead of relying on pressure detection, the Force Touch technology will instead be a monitoring feature in the next generation smartphone, and assess the size of pressure from the contact area where the user touches the display in question.
Apple will currently be wrestling with certain economic issues related to the iPhone 6S and Force Touch technology. It is stated that the sensors which will need to be included in the iPhone 6S in order to introduce this technology will be significantly more expensive than those utilized in the Apple Watch. This is perhaps not hugely surprising considering the massive difference in size between the two devices.
Sensors for the iPhone 6S will reportedly cast around $15 each, which is around three times the $5 price that the Apple Watch devices entailed. It will be interesting to see whether this is remotely reflected in the price of the iPhone range, as Apple will be under pressure to freeze the price point of the smartphone considering the rapid sales that it experienced with the iPhone 6 at this level.
Naming debate rumbles on
There is still some debate over whether this particular device will be dubbed the iPhone 6S, or whether it will be treated as a next generation iPhone 7. If Force Touch is included then Apple could make the decision to brand this smartphone as an iPhone 7, but some analysts are still suggesting that it will instead opt for the iPhone 6S monicker.
Although Apple has kept extremely quiet on the subject of the next iPhone in this iconic range, we already have an extremely good idea when it will release. Leaks from the British mobile phone company Vodafone suggest that the iPhone 6S hit the market on September 25, with pre-orders of the device available one week before this date. This was established by internal staff e-mails from Vodafone UK.
With rumors related to the device including a possible 4K resolution model (or more likely a quad HD phblet), a possible four-inch variant of the smartphone, the inclusion of Series 7000 aluminum, the introduction of sapphire glass, possible wireless charging, and a vastly improved camera, this will certainly be an iPhone 6S release worth waiting for.