Analyst: Apple’s next iPhone to feature 4-inch Retina display, ‘sleek’ unibody case

“Analyst Brian J. White with Topeka Capital Markets issued a note to investors on Monday highlighting details he picked up on a tour of suppliers in China and Taiwan,” Neil Hughes reports for AppleInsider. “During his visit, he was given the sense that some suppliers will begin production in June of certain components of Apple’s sixth-generation iPhone, setting up for a product launch in the fall.”

“He believes the next iPhone will have a larger screen, which he sees as being 4 inches,” Hughes reports. “He also expects the device will have high-speed 4G LTE connectivity, just like the new iPad.”

Hughes reports, “‘In our view, this will be the most significant iPhone upgrade with a four-inch screen and a new, sleek look that we believe will require a Unibody case,’ White wrote. ‘This new, sleek look will be the most important reason that consumers decide to upgrade.'”

Read more in the full article here.

24 Comments

    1. it wouldn’t be that hard to squeeze an extra .5 inch in the current size iphone4s. There’s a lot of space above & below current screen. Some space on the sides.

      1. They can’t change the aspect ratio nor the number of pixels, and you can’t create pixel “area” outside the current screen without totally trashing most the the graphics & routines in the SDK (and fragment the existing software base)
        They could also “grow” the phone like some of the oversized ‘roid monsters, but they are stupid stupid stupid, so I don’t think that is likely either.

        The only thing they could do would be to squeeze the screen width to the edges (across the narrow side) and expand a proportional amount along the length. This would yield a minimal (<10%) change in screen size though.

    2. What’s the matter, got the hands of a three year-old? A half-inch diagonal increase is very little in the actual width of the phone. If you can’t cope with that, how the hell do you manage when you rotate the phone? Or do you never, ever use it in landscape mode?
      Any bigger, though, will make the phone too big for comfortable pocket carry.

      1. When people rotate their phone to landscape, they tend to use 2 hands for it. The fuss is over the 4″ screen being too tall to comfortably reach all areas one-handed, as most people would want to use their phones.

  1. The simple fact that the new iPad has a massive battery to support it’s screen and graphics is added proof that apple will not go with a larger screen, unless they plan on making a clunkier phone all together. Not too mention the chipset in the iPad 3 is mostly graphics which, another point as to why this won’t be the case. The iPhone versions of the A processors are always smaller and if apple could make the A5X smaller with the same graphics they would have done so for the iPad 3.

  2. “Oh wow, oh wow, oh wow.” That’s what Steve Jobs said when they told him about the new 4″ iPhone 5.

    All you hamsters out there hankering for a 3.5″ screen, stick with the 4S. I’m sure Apple will be churning that out until 2015. That should give your midget minds a couple of years to adjust. Adapt or die, baby!

  3. 4″ and LTE 4G iPhone 5 hits the sweet spot for me. After switching to Verizon with my new iPad I’m looking forward to doing the same with my wife’s old AT&T 3G and my iPhone 4. We live slightly up in the hills of the San Fernando Valley and for the last 20 years suffered with AT&T, Microcell notwithstanding. Verizon reception, as witnessed with my new iPad, is way better.

  4. I think a bigger 4″ screen will allow Apple to
    1) Properly compete with larger offerings from competitors without being absurdly large
    2) Keep the phone as thin or thinner than the iPhone 4S while also allowing more space for a battery for power hungry features like LTE and a more powerful processor.

    Furthermore, I think the calculations on PPI show that a moderate increase in size from 3.5″ to 4″ would still give the new iPhone a pixel density that would qualify as “Retina” quality at the same resolution. Removing much of the black bezel from the current iPhone would mean that the overall size of the new iPhone with a 4″ screen wouldn’t have to be all that much larger anyway. They could even market the crap out of the fact that it’s got a big screen and a small overall size. “Big Screen. Small Size. The New iPhone.” That would simultaneously address the competition and knock them for their big size.

      1. Understood, and I agree overall. Yet, despite that factoid, Android has a 10+% marketshare lead. With Android it’s death by a thousand papercuts. Sure, the revenue is vastly Apples, and that’s most important, but revenue also comes from marketshare. They feed on each other.

        Sure, I think 5.5″ screened phones are ridiculous, but unlike some MDN posters, I don’t think that 3.5″ is the end all, be all of phone sizes – there’s a bit more wiggle room. A 4″ screen would be really nice and not require much growth in the overall size of the phone. It’s also an easily marketable feature and effectively takes away one of the few selling points of Android phones.

  5. Indisputable truths I’ve earned from analysts:

    Apple will die if they don’t re-introduce the Floppy-Drive.

    Apple will die if they don’t license their OS.

    Apple will die if they don’t lower their prices.

    No-one will buy a tablet.
    – Well, okay, but no-one will buy a tablet or phone that doesn’t have a physical keyboard. And a stylus.

    The new iPhone will have a 4″ screen.

  6. Here is my opinion on the state of the iPhone screen size.

    The existing screen size (3.5″) is clearly already grotesquely too large for a very large percentage of the user base. Ask almost ANY women who has an iPhone and she’ll tell you she’d love a smaller device, as the current brick looks extremely dorky when held up to one’s ear; not to mention the amount of space it takes up in an average purse.

    I am sure there is small percentage of über-geeks for whom bigger is better, and they’d love to carry around a 4″, even 4.5″ iPhone. However, their numbers are simply insignificant enough for Apple to bother. If Apple does in the end decide to make a large iPhone, it will likely only be a high-end, large-capacity version for the geeky types (“If we’re going to please the few geeks out there, we may as well take their money”). General population would likely prefer a smaller model than a larger one.

    1. And that, sir, is just SO much bollocks! I know a lot of women with iPhones, and not one has an issue with the size. You have no idea what you are on about.

      1. What I’m talking about comes from NPD (research group). Does your data amount to anything more than anecdotal evidence witnessed first-hand?

        I never asked any woman what their preference is. Even if I did, I’d have to ask several hundred before I could get a meaningful sample for a survey. However, the good people of NPD do this for a living.

  7. Apple will keep for sure the 4:3 aspekt ratio as well as the 960 x 640 resolution, so 3.8 inch will be the maximum without increasing the size of the casing. And they can do this only if they need no extra space for the backlight unit and this means they have to change to AMOLED technology.

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