KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has said in his earlier reports that Apple would launch three iPhones in the second half of 2018. Two of them will be iPhone X successors, featuring an OLED display. The third one will retain the LCD panel, and would have a screen size of 6.1-inch. The iPhone X successors will be available in 5.8-inch and 6.5-inch sizes. In his latest note to investors, Kuo has revealed some interesting details about batteries in the upcoming iPhones.
iPhone X successors to have new one-cell battery design
KGI Securities has learned from supply chain sources (via 9to5Mac) that the iPhone X successors would pack more powerful batteries. The current iPhone X features a two-cell, L-shaped battery. It allowed Apple to pack a 2716mAh battery in the iPhone X, as revealed in the iFixit teardown of the device. Kuo says Apple is working with LG Chem on an improved one-cell design for the L-shaped battery that will be used in the 2018 iPhones.
The new space-efficient battery design means Apple will be able to include a bigger battery in the iPhone X successors. According to Kuo, the next year’s 5.8-inch iPhone would feature a 2900 to 3000mAh battery, up from the 2716mAh in the iPhone X. The larger size of the 6.5-inch model would offer enough room for a 3300 to 3400mAh battery.
It represents only 10% increase in the battery size compared to the iPhone X. But a bigger battery coupled with a more energy efficient processor and tighter integration of software and hardware would significantly boost the battery life. As for the 6.1-inch LCD iPhone, he expects it to “keep the rectangular battery design to keep a better cost structure.” But its battery will still be larger than the iPhone 8 series.
iPhones are not known for great battery life
The TrueDepth camera on the iPhone X consumes a lot of power. Kuo says all the 2018 iPhones would feature the TrueDepth camera for Face ID and Animoji features. The iPhone users have long complained about battery life. Even though Apple has significantly improved all other aspects of the iPhones, the devices still don’t offer a full day of battery life.
Consumer Reports pointed out the same problem with the iPhone X in their latest report. The iPhone X comes 9th in Consumer Reports’ list of top ten recommended smartphones, sitting far behind the Galaxy S8, iPhone 8, and Galaxy Note 8. The anniversary iPhone performed poorly in durability and battery life tests. Its battery stayed alive for only 19.5 hours, compared to the iPhone 8 Plus’s 21 hours and the Galaxy S8’s impressive 26 hours.
2018 LCD iPhone to have a metal chassis
The 6.1-inch LCD iPhone will ditch the Touch ID for the revolutionary new Face ID facial recognition system. It means the device will have a bezel-less design with no physical home button. Supply chain sources told Nikkei that the 2018 LCD iPhone would feature a metal casing, unlike the glass casing on the OLED iPhone X successors. It means the LCD iPhone won’t have wireless charging capabilities. Nikkei claims its price tag will be similar to the iPhone 8, while the OLED iPhones would cost upward of $1,000.
Sources privy to Apple’s plans told Nikkei that Pegatron’s subsidiary Casetek will be supplying the metal casing for the upcoming LCD iPhone. Casetek is a supplier of metal casing for the iPads, and has already been experimenting with metal chassis for the next year’s LCD iPhone. Since they have close ties, Casetek and Pegatron could sync their manufacturing process to integrate their offerings for next year’s iPhone orders, said Nikkei.
Wozniak ‘kinda’ likes the iPhone X
The current iPhone X has been received very well by consumers. Some analysts estimate the iPhone X would boost the total iPhone shipments during the holiday quarter to more than 88 million units. Apple has also resolved the production issues, and is now producing 450,000 to 550,000 iPhone X units per day. As a result, the shipping times have come down from 5-6 weeks previously to less than a week now.
Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak talked about his experience with the iPhone X while speaking at the Pivot Summit in Geelong, Victoria. Wozniak had previously said that he was not interested in picking up the iPhone X on day one. Following the phone’s launch, Tim Cook personally sent him an iPhone X unit to try out. Wozniak said he “kinda” like it. However, he still prefers the Touch ID fingerprint sensor over the new Face ID facial recognition. The Apple co-founder said the iPhone X should have had a fingerprint reader on the back panel.