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Apple's fifth-gen iPhone rumored to have curved glass screen

post #1 of 64
Thread Starter 
The latest rumor from Apple's supply chain in Taiwan is that the fifth-generation iPhone will have a curved glass cover for its touchscreen display.

Sources in the supply chain reportedly told DigiTimes that Apple has purchased between 200 and 300 glass cutting machines to be used by glass makers for the production of curved displays. Cover glass makers are said to be "reluctant to commit investment" in such equipment because of costs.

"The glass slicing machines are currently being stored at associated assembly plants and will be brought online once yield rates for the production of curved glass reaches a satisfactory level," Monday's report said.

Because the "iPhone 5" is set to launch later than usual this year, suppliers do not yet have a timetable for volume production of the next-generation device. Apple reportedly continues to work with suppliers including cover glass, glass cutting, lamination and touch sensors to improve yield rates.

The concept of a curved glass smartphone screen was a major feature of the Google Nexus S, which launched in the U.S. last December. The flagship device from Google, which was the first to run the "Gingerbread" Android mobile operating system, sports a 400-by-800-pixel display on a unique "contour display" with curved glass.

As for the fifth-generation iPhone, the most recent details have suggested the device will have a camera lens and LED flash spread further apart on the rear of the device. This would allow for improved photos in low-lighting conditions by reducing the "red eye" effect sometimes created by camera flash.



Other reports have suggested that Apple is looking to slightly enlarge the display of the next iPhone, utilizing an edge-to-edge Retina Display while retaining the same form factor as the current iPhone 4. However, Monday's report is the first indication of a supposed curved screen for the next-generation iPhone.
post #2 of 64
My concern is that the curved glass will increase the probability of broken glass. Does anyone have any info reference the Google Nexus?
post #3 of 64
Like this?



An early design. \

All the best.
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post #4 of 64
Just do it!
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post #5 of 64
Is it normal for Apple to purchase machines for a supplier?
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post #6 of 64
mmm interesting
post #7 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shoozz View Post

My concern is that the curved glass will increase the probability of broken glass. Does anyone have any info reference the Google Nexus?

don't why it would really, glass is amorphous. May even be better if it follows the contour of a front pocket...
post #8 of 64
Ι dont see what benefit curved glass would have, could someone explain?
post #9 of 64
Is there any value in doing this beyond some insignificant aesthetic exercise?

I'm just asking.
post #10 of 64
The article doesn't mention it, but what exactly is the benefit of a curved glass screen supposed to be? I can sort of see it when used as a handset (if we're talking concave), but it seems like a detriment for working with apps, and maybe for use as a camera.
post #11 of 64
The thing I'm having trouble figuring out is how Apple will stop people accidentally touching the touch screen with the palm-side of their thumb while holding the iPhone 5, given its edge-to-edge display. It will have to have flat sides like the iPhone 4, but also, some kind of lip on the front edge of the device to negate accidental touches from the holding-hand; the left hand for most users.
Citing unnamed sources with limited but direct knowledge of a rumoured device - Comedy Insider (Feb 2014)
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Citing unnamed sources with limited but direct knowledge of a rumoured device - Comedy Insider (Feb 2014)
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post #12 of 64
Iphone 6 will be the shape of a sphere.

It will be called the iball
post #13 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ireland View Post

The thing I'm having trouble figuring out is how Apple will stop people accidentally touching the touch screen with the palm-side of their thumb while holding the iPhone 5, given its edge-to-edge display. It will have to have flat sides like the iPhone 4, but also, some kind of lip on the front edge of the device to negate accidental touches from the holding-hand; the left hand for most users.

I already do that on my iPhone 4. There is some merit in having a bezel on these tiny devices.

Personally I don't see the advantage of a curved screen, but I'd take a larger screen in a heart beat. The iPhone's screen now looks positively miniature compared to many Android screens. I'm hoping for at least 4", but ideally 4.5".
post #14 of 64
I'm going to laugh when Apple releases the iPhone 5 or 4S or whatever they call it on the normal schedule. Unless there's a shortage of components, I doubt it will be that hard to put in better camera and A5 with the same basic design. And yes, just adding the A5 is a big deal. A 9 fold increase in graphics performance is a big deal.
post #15 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by GotWake View Post

I'm going to laugh when Apple releases the iPhone 5 or 4S or whatever they call it on the normal schedule. Unless there's a shortage of components, I doubt it will be that hard to put in better camera and A5 with the same basic design. And yes, just adding the A5 is a big deal. A 9 fold increase in graphics performance is a big deal.


i'm with you, i feel the ip4 is near ideal, maybe similar screen ratio for ipad to support developers, but why would apple follow "nexus"
they already got samsung saying "they copied us"
it may be a prototype, but apple doesn't need to follow it leads
and the advantage?? SJ gives value not gimmick
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post #16 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by IQatEdo View Post

Like this?



An early design. \

All the best.



Interesting.

I'm confused by this article, but maybe someone here can set me straight. The article mentions the nexus S as a comparison for curved glass. I really don't know anything about it, so I did an image search. According to the pictures, the glass display doesn't look curved, yet the article above concerns a curved glass display, which made me think of something like the illustration above. Which one is it, curved back, or curved display? Or was I just not looking closely enough at the nexus S?

I have a hard time seeing apple using a curved display for the phone. It's a neat idea, but would there be complaints about picture viewing, and games? I can see the concavity offering ease of use for the arch swing of the thumb...but I never saw this as an "issue" that needed to be solved. Have I completely misunderstood?

Thoughts? I'm intrigued but skeptical.
post #17 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sol77 View Post

Interesting.

I'm confused by this article, but maybe someone here can set me straight. The article mentions the nexus S as a comparison for curved glass. I really don't know anything about it, so I did an image search. According to the pictures, the glass display doesn't look curved, yet the article above concerns a curved glass display, which made me think of something like the illustration above. Which one is it, curved back, or curved display? Or was I just not looking closely enough at the nexus S?

I have a hard time seeing apple using a curved display for the phone. It's a neat idea, but would there be complaints about picture viewing, and games? I can see the concavity offering ease of use for the arch swing of the thumb...but I never saw this as an "issue" that needed to be solved. Have I completely misunderstood?

Thoughts? I'm intrigued but skeptical.

Actually, I wasn't sure about that either - someone will set us straight.
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post #18 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by kotatsu View Post

I already do that on my iPhone 4. There is some merit in having a bezel on these tiny devices.

Personally I don't see the advantage of a curved screen, but I'd take a larger screen in a heart beat. The iPhone's screen now looks positively miniature compared to many Android screens. I'm hoping for at least 4", but ideally 4.5".



Being a tall guy (6'4/73cm), I also have larger hands - my ideal phone would be as big as the Dell Streak (ducks head to avoid bricks and rotten vegetables). I would welcome a 4.5 inch screen...but Apple would never do it, I fear. It does seem strange to me, however - they offer a variety of sizes for the ipod, most notably the nano/touch, shuffle/classic, and have multiple sizes of the same model laptop, both air and pro, and the same with desktops. I've heard people argue that it would be unApple-like to do it...but the opposite seems to be true. Can't help but agree with the conclusion, though. Don't think it will happen. Ever. iPhone seems to be singular.
post #19 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dullblade View Post

Iphone 6 will be the shape of a sphere.

It will be called the iball


Thank you for that, i really DID LOL!
post #20 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by kotatsu View Post

I already do that on my iPhone 4. There is some merit in having a bezel on these tiny devices.

Personally I don't see the advantage of a curved screen, but I'd take a larger screen in a heart beat. The iPhone's screen now looks positively miniature compared to many Android screens. I'm hoping for at least 4", but ideally 4.5".

What I'd like to see is a 5" Touch being as the Touch is a pocket computer and not used for making calls. 3.5" is too small for a device like the Touch. You can watch video, surf, read, game etc. on a 3.5" device but let's not kid ourselves. It's a seriously compromised experience.

It makes sense for a phone to compromise so much because, after all, it is a phone foremost and for a phone, a form factor accommodating a 5" screen would be awkward. But a pocket computer would be simply that much better with a 5" display instead of 3.5". It doesn't sound like a lot but it is. One could use a 5" display with the current Touch's 960 X 640 resolution and still have a terrific display with plenty of resolution.

Making such a device would give Apple a product that could siphon off sales of some of those 7" tablets (such as those sales are) and compete with assorted readers. It might cannibalize some iPad sales but Apple can't build those fast enough. Besides, there is a huge difference between a 5" and a 9.7" device. 5" is at the limit for a device you could pocket.

I'm not sure why Apple would choose to saddle the Touch with a screen better suited to a smartphone. It can't be about not selling enough Touchs to dedicate a unique screen to it since the Touch screen is not the same unit employed on the iPhone. It can't be about fragmenting available resolutions because a 5" screen would be just fine using the iPhone resolution.

Also, if the Touch grew a little larger, that would leave room for the Nano to spec up a little as well.

Perhaps I'm wrong about this but I don't get the impression that Apple thinks the Touch is in need of a significant revision. On the other hand, maybe, what happened last year is that Apple didn't want a larger Touch muddying the waters with the iPad a new device. Yet surely now the iPad is well established hence a larger Touch would not be an issue.

It makes more sense to make a somewhat larger Touch than significantly increase screen real estate in the iPhone. For a phone, the iPhone is fine the way it is. The Touch is another matter.
post #21 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dullblade View Post

Iphone 6 will be the shape of a sphere.

It will be called the iball


>> runs to submit a patent on this

GOLD!!
post #22 of 64
Isn't this more likely for the iPod Touch?
Also - yes they might want to move the flash, but i'd imagine the A5's large size chip will hae meant things needing to be rejigged anyway.

Would Apple ever enjoy moving things around in part to differentiate model types? I could see the use of the flash moving so people can identify the current model with the new iPhone this September.
post #23 of 64
What if Apple is trying out a new Clamshell form figure?

Everybody else is going bigger. With a Dual Screen, Dual Core phone. And with J. Ive using that Liquid Metal for a real thin strong shape.

Just my halve cent worth
post #24 of 64
Like this?

post #25 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by diamondgeeza View Post

don't why it would really, glass is amorphous. May even be better if it follows the contour of a front pocket...


I agree, in most instances curved objects do better in regards to accidental breakage. But I am dieing to see how Jonathan Ive and company pull this off. They have been on a roll hitting product design out of the park for so long.
post #26 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by rp2011 View Post

I agree, in most instances curved objects do better in regards to accidental breakage. But I am dieing to see how Jonathan Ive and company pull this off. They have been on a roll hitting product design out of the park for so long.

Slightly better in terms of breakage, more 'organic' feel, new(ish) design trend, slips more easily into pocket, better (maybe) grip. That's what I could see.

No major breakthough, but innovative and a difference to help differentiate and market the next new iPhone.
post #27 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by boeyc15 View Post

Is it normal for Apple to purchase machines for a supplier?

I can't speak specifically to Apple but it is common for a manufacturer to negotiate ownership of the tools their suppliers will use and often it is the manufacturer (i.e. Apple) who pays for the most specialized tools.

In my company we are contracting with several suppliers and builders in South America, South Africa, and India. Our contracts state that if the relationship is terminated we keep the tools so we can easily transfer to a new supplier without needing to wait for all new tools to be engineered, tested, and polished.
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post #28 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mister Snitch View Post

No major breakthough, but innovative and a difference to help differentiate and market the next new iPhone.

They can differentiate by making the iPhone 5 look like the flagship Android device? I'm not so sure...

IMO there would have to be a damn good reason for Apple to do this.
post #29 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sol77 View Post

Interesting.

I'm confused by this article, but maybe someone here can set me straight. The article mentions the nexus S as a comparison for curved glass. I really don't know anything about it, so I did an image search. According to the pictures, the glass display doesn't look curved, yet the article above concerns a curved glass display, which made me think of something like the illustration above. Which one is it, curved back, or curved display? Or was I just not looking closely enough at the nexus S?

I have a hard time seeing apple using a curved display for the phone. It's a neat idea, but would there be complaints about picture viewing, and games? I can see the concavity offering ease of use for the arch swing of the thumb...but I never saw this as an "issue" that needed to be solved. Have I completely misunderstood?

Thoughts? I'm intrigued but skeptical.

I own a Nexus S. I wasn't swept miraculously by the curved display(Super AMOLED, totally swept away). It adds a little bit of smoothness to the phone and feels a bit nicer on the face.

But to see the actual curve, you have to almost dedicate yourself to pinpointing exact spots on the phone.
post #30 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by eh270 View Post

Like this?


They can call it the iGlass and they can build it with all clear parts.
post #31 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

The latest rumors from Apple's supply chain in Taiwan is that the fifth-generation iPhone will have a curved glass cover for its touchscreen display.

Sounds possible .. for 2012 when the 5th generation iPhone comes out. 2011 is A5 processor, more memory and a universal chipset. Everything else is still in the lab.
post #32 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Carmissimo View Post

Is there any value in doing this beyond some insignificant aesthetic exercise?

I'm just asking.

I think the idea is to make it contour more naturally to the face when talking. Kinda like an old school handset. Also, may fit more naturally in the hand and in your pocket against the body. Works best if back is curved too. But all I ask is that it not rock when laid down on a surface, so would need some flat area in the center of the back

As for copying Google? Apple debuted curved glass on iPod nano some time ago.
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post #33 of 64
Curved beveled edges to make the feel more comfortable?
post #34 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by rols View Post

Sounds possible .. for 2012 when the 5th generation iPhone comes out. 2011 is A5 processor, more memory and a universal chipset. Everything else is still in the lab.

Not to rain on your parade here, but the next phone that comes out (likely September), will be the 5th generation. It may or may not be called iPhone 5, but it will be the 5th generation regardless of what it is called. And as the pattern goes, the phone they come out with after that, in 2012, will be the 6th generation, and so on.
post #35 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by DJinTX View Post

Not to rain on your parade here, but the next phone that comes out (likely September), will be the 5th generation. It may or may not be called iPhone 5, but it will be the 5th generation regardless of what it is called. And as the pattern goes, the phone they come out with after that, in 2012, will be the 6th generation, and so on.

Not necessarily. The original iPhone was not called iPhone 1, even though it was. The iPhone 3G was not called the iPhone 2 even though it was the second. The 3GS allowed the designation number to catch up to the actual generation (3). So even though the 4 is the 4th generation there is ample precedence in the past for Apple to ignore it going forward. If the next update is called 4S, it may be the 5th generation but not called iPhone5 either officially or casually. If Apple calls it the 4S, so will everyone else.

Or did I miss your point.
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post #36 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Robin Huber View Post

Not necessarily. The original iPhone was not called iPhone 1, even though it was. The iPhone 3G was not called the iPhone 2 even though it was the second. The 3GS allowed the designation number to catch up to the actual generation (3). So even though the 4 is the 4th generation there is ample precedence in the past for Apple to ignore it going forward. If the next update is called 4S, it may be the 5th generation but not called iPhone5 either officially or casually. If Apple calls it the 4S, so will everyone else.

Or did I miss your point.

Yes you missed my point. I was basically arguing this same point because rols was saying that there will be an iPhone in 2012 that will be 5th generation. If he/she had said iPhone 5 would be out in 2012 then that could be true, and I would have let that slide. But the only way there is a 5th gen iPhone in 2012 is if there is one hell of a delay and we do not get the next phone until January at the earliest.

Normally I wouldn't split hairs like this, but there still seem to be people who confuse the generation number with the radio technology and the marketing name, and this just gets annoying after awhile.
post #37 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by IQatEdo View Post

Like this?



An early design. \

All the best.

But it looks too much like a Blackberry. I prefer the iPhone 5 to look like a mini Macbook Air.
post #38 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mister Snitch View Post

Slightly better in terms of breakage, more 'organic' feel, new(ish) design trend, slips more easily into pocket, better (maybe) grip. That's what I could see.

No major breakthough, but innovative and a difference to help differentiate and market the next new iPhone.

And the amount of reflections will double, and it'll be harder to move the phone where there's no glare. Depending on how much curve there is, of course. Hopefully it'll be much less curve than the old iPod Nano, like maybe a mostly flat screen with just a slight curve on the edges. But curved edges may make it easier for the hand that's holding the iPhone to accidentally press something on the screen, especially if the screen goes edge-to-edge.
post #39 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by quinney View Post

Curved beveled edges to make the feel more comfortable?

Yep guess this is it.

An Android Fanboy once told me "Oh my god, don't buy an iPhone! Those hard aluminum and glass edges will hurt you after you hold the iPhone for longer than 10 minutes. I got myself an Samsung Galaxy with a nice curved back. You can hold it without hurting yourself". LOL
post #40 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by IQatEdo View Post

Like this?



An early design. \

All the best.

Curve it along the length... not the width. Re-draw it like you were bending a playing card up the middle. Makes it easier to hold and avoids touches to the screen. Also, the bend should be very subtle...
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