With the next generation iPhone just months away, details regarding Apple's flagship smartphone are coming into focus. Previous reports have pointed to a radical new design in the works, set to make a splash at this fall's 10th anniversary of the iPhone. Apple may skip the iPhone 8 name entirely, opting for another title such as the iPhone X for its top-tier model. Two additional models that could be dubbed the iPhone 7s are also expected to launch in September.
The tenth anniversary of the iPhone is set to be a big year, according to the latest report from Nikkei. Sources tell the Japanese publication that Apple indeed plans to reveal a curved OLED-display iPhone, confirming previous rumors. The flagship device would be accompanied by updates to the current 4.7-inch and 5.5-inch Plus form factors, bringing the total number of iPhone models to three.
Imagine an iPhone display that's thinner, looks better, and extends battery life to boot. Reports indicate that Apple supplier Foxconn is partnering with InnoLux on a new manufacturing plant. The facility would be dedicated to producing OLED panels for Apple wearables and smartphones.
The Foxconn plant is slated to enter mass production in 2016, which could align smartphone OLED production with an iPhone 7 launch later that year. The Apple Watch is currently the only Apple product known to utilize an OLED display, despite past rumors of the technology heading to the iPhone.
There's been a lot of talk about how Apple can improve the iPhone display. Ultimately, the goal is a lighter, brighter, thinner screen that extents battery life. Rumors have been floating around for some time surrounding Sharp's IGZO, however the technology has failed to surface on an Apple product to date. Now thanks to a new patent filing the possibility of an OLED (organic light-emitting diode) display has resurfaced.
Although Samsung, among others, has already embraced the OLED thanks to its thin profile and power-sipping nature, it seems Apple plans to customize and improve on the technology before adding OLED to the iPhone. In the patent, Apple describes photodiode sensors embedded throughout the OLED display, which would serve to improve its function dynamically.
Rumors of Apple considering OLED technology for the iPhone display have been floating around for years. Now a report from The Korea Times has rekindled the notion that Apple might switch over to the power-sipping display technology in a future iPhone.
An unnamed Samsung executive explained that Apple has questions over "an output commitment and product volume as Samsung’s OLED business isn’t on full track. But chances have risen to break the wall." Samsung Electronics launched an affiliate company, Samsung Display, which will focus solely on the LCD and OLED display business. The segment currently brings Samsung over $26 billion in annual revenues.