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Analyst: Apple could equip 5.5" 'iPhone 6' with more powerful processor than 4.7" model

post #1 of 93
Thread Starter 
As the supposed September unveiling of Apple's next-generation iPhone lineup draws nearer, at least one Wall Street analyst believes that the component makeup of the rumored 5.5-inch and 4.7-inch "iPhone 6" variants will diverge when it comes to their application processors and touch modules.

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Cowen & Co. analyst Timothy Arcuri cited Asian supply chain checks when making the prediction in a Monday morning note to investors. A copy of the report was provided to AppleInsider.

Arcuri's sources signaled that the 5.5-inch iPhone will feature a more powerful application processor than its smaller sibling, though no details were given as to the disparity. Apple has made similar moves in the past; the A7 processor in the iPad Air is clocked at 1.39 gigahertz, for instance, compared to 1.29 gigahertz for the otherwise-identical part in the iPad mini with Retina display.

There is some indication that the difference could be more than semantic, however. Arcuri also said that the processor in the 5.5-inch model could ship with a larger die, hinting at a more wide-ranging architectural split.

A larger die might be a sign that the 5.5-inch model will feature additional on-die silicon, such as a larger array of graphics processing cores. Alternatively, it might suggest that Apple will make the two chips -- believed to be the "A8" -- in different fabrication plants using different processes.

At least one rumor previously suggested that Apple would split A8 manufacturing between Taiwanese semiconductor giant TSMC and South Korea-based Samsung, though further reports indicated that TSMC had instead won the full order.

In addition the processor differences, Arcuri believes that both iPhone 6 models could sport different touch modules. Taipei-based TPK currently supplies touch modules for the iPhone, though a change could be in the works as the company is said to have been chosen as the manufacturer of silver nanowire-based parts for the so-called "iWatch."
post #2 of 93
Just like they did with the iPad Air and iPad mini? 1oyvey.gif

Apple can barely manage to get this iPhone and iOS launch done, and its at the expense of just about every other product or potential product.

They are not working on TWO new chips. Delete this "rumor". At the most, this refers to slightly different clock speeds of the same chip.
post #3 of 93
develop two processors, that's highly unlikely!
post #4 of 93

The 5.5" iPhone 6 is fake.

post #5 of 93
Except there is no iPhone 5.5"- at least not until we see a single leak for it. And there certainly won't be an A8+ for it.

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post #6 of 93
Well, they did make an A5/A5X and also an A6/A6X.

However, I think the A7 allowed Apple to combine both increased performance (suitable for the iPad) and reduced power consumption (for the iPhone) into a single device. I don't see them going back to making an A8/A8X.

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post #7 of 93

Apple Anal-cyst here!

 

I can also make predictions.

 

My Supply chain checks indicates that Apple is going to equip all of their iPhone 6 variants with the same Ax processor. Now how do I get paid?


Edited by RalphMouth - 8/4/14 at 11:22am
post #8 of 93
To answer their question, yes of course they could.

Also, of course they could not just as easily.
post #9 of 93

Could? Yes.

 

Would? No.

post #10 of 93
Well it will be deffinitelly the same chips. But there are variances in the same proces, Apple could put those better, lower powered chips in to the smaller new iPhone and those worse made, higher powered ones will be put into the bigger new iPhone or iPad instead of being thrown away.
post #11 of 93
Another breathless speculative article that adds nothing and states the obvious of what could be possible

William
iMac 21.5" Late 2012, iPad 3 (Works fine for films), iPhone 5 (6 on order)

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William
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post #12 of 93
I think Apple would be making a big mistake if they come out with two new phone sizes and gave the larger phone better specs. Especially considering they basically went the opposite way with iPads last year. All you really had to focus on was what size you wanted. You didn't have to make any compromises. What If I don't want a phablet but still want the best camera/processor/display etc. IMO the only differentiation that would be warranted is something that is specifically suited to a larger screen. Like iPads getting split screen multitasking but perhaps the 4.7" iPhone not getting that feature.

I'm still not convinced a 5.5" device exists, or if if does that Apple is considering it just a larger iPhone. If there's going to be differentiation, IMO it will be a completely different device with a specific purpose, like perhaps mobile gaming. Or maybe in an ironic twist it will have pen support ala the Galaxy Note.
post #13 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by pmz View Post


Apple can barely manage to get this iPhone and iOS launch done, and its at the expense of just about every other product or potential product.

Barely manage to get this launch done? Now who's buying into rumors?
post #14 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by DipDog3 View Post
 

The 5.5" iPhone 6 is fake.

 

This is exactly what I've been thinking.  There is scant evidence for a 5.5" model.  It's as though the rumor of such has been generated to ensure that there will be disappointment at the Sept iPhone 6 introduction with the goal being to crash the stock.

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post #15 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by pmz View Post

Just like they did with the iPad Air and iPad mini? 1oyvey.gif

Apple can barely manage to get this iPhone and iOS launch done, and its at the expense of just about every other product or potential product.

They are not working on TWO new chips. Delete this "rumor". At the most, this refers to slightly different clock speeds of the same chip.

 

Where does that ridiculous comment come from? Apple has been successfully launching products on time for years. What would make you say they "can't get it done"? For years, Apple has launched products in September with clearly stated and hit delivery dates. What products are they at the expense of?

post #16 of 93
I would not be surprised if the A8 on a larger-format iPhone is clocked at a faster speed, since it should be easier to cool. I would also not be surprised by other differences between the two iPhones (4.7 vs 5.5) such as one having a Gorilla Glass screen and the other having sapphire, one coming with 16 GB standard and the other with 32GB.

I would be surprised, however, if their prices are the same or nearly the same. Apple would benefit financially by dividing the iPhone market into "superior" and "premium" segments -- one priced at $649 and the other priced at $749 or $799. Apple's incremental cost of a premium model might be $50, more or less, while its incremental revenue would be two or three times that amount.
post #17 of 93
Not surprising. Apple's market share has grown so large, it needs Good-Better-Best versions to cover the wishes of so many different customers. This is a move in that direction.

I just hope they don't botch it like they did the 5c. That model looked little different from a host of other smartphones and was overpriced in comparison to the 5s. Making the Best have a larger screen and more power, the Better a mid-sized screen, and keeping the 5s (but not 5c) available for Good would work better.

Apple's real problem lies with how contract-subsidized marketing currently works. Even a $199 to $0 difference between the Best and Good models may not be enough to cover the differences. The monthly contract for Better may need to cost more than that for the Good. It might even make sense to make that the only difference.

Apple's also being missing the boat by showing iPhones and iPads being used in all sorts of outdoor activities without having a Sport model with an impressive waterproof, drop-proof Milspec rating.
post #18 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by DipDog3 View Post

The 5.5" iPhone 6 is fake.

It's every inch an iPad.

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post #19 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by StanTheMan View Post

I would not be surprised if the A8 on a larger-format iPhone is clocked at a faster speed, since it should be easier to cool. I would also not be surprised by other differences between the two iPhones (4.7 vs 5.5) such as one having a Gorilla Glass screen and the other having sapphire, one coming with 16 GB standard and the other with 32GB.

I would be surprised, however, if their prices are the same or nearly the same. Apple would benefit financially by dividing the iPhone market into "superior" and "premium" segments -- one priced at $649 and the other priced at $749 or $799. Apple's incremental cost of a premium model might be $50, more or less, while its incremental revenue would be two or three times that amount.
Screen size shouldn't define whether an iPhone is "premium" or not. What if I prefer faster processor, better camera, screen and battery life but I don't want a phablet? The iPad Air is slightly faster than the retina mini but in every day use it is hardly noticeable. And the color gamut is slightly better on the Air as well. Other than that the two devices are the same. Why would Apple go the opposite way with iPhone?
post #20 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by Inkling View Post

Not surprising. Apple's market share has grown so large, it needs Good-Better-Best versions to cover the wishes of so many different customers. This is a move in that direction.

I just hope they don't botch it like they did the 5c. That model looked little different from a host of other smartphones and was overpriced in comparison to the 5s. Making the Best have a larger screen and more power, the Better a mid-sized screen, and keeping the 5s (but not 5c) available for Good would work better.

Apple's real problem lies with how contract-subsidized marketing currently works. Even a $199 to $0 difference between the Best and Good models may not be enough to cover the differences. The monthly contract for Better may need to cost more than that for the Good. It might even make sense to make that the only difference.

Apple's also being missing the boat by showing iPhones and iPads being used in all sorts of outdoor activities without having a Sport model with an impressive waterproof, drop-proof Milspec rating.
Who decided larger screen = Best? I don't want a 5.5" phone. If Apple goes that route then I'll just keep my 5S and see they they do next year. I'm not going to purchase an inferior device just because I prefer a smaller screen size.
post #21 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by Inkling View Post

Not surprising. Apple's market share has grown so large, it needs Good-Better-Best versions to cover the wishes of so many different customers. This is a move in that direction.

I just hope they don't botch it like they did the 5c. That model looked little different from a host of other smartphones and was overpriced in comparison to the 5s. Making the Best have a larger screen and more power, the Better a mid-sized screen, and keeping the 5s (but not 5c) available for Good would work better.

Apple's real problem lies with how contract-subsidized marketing currently works. Even a $199 to $0 difference between the Best and Good models may not be enough to cover the differences. The monthly contract for Better may need to cost more than that for the Good. It might even make sense to make that the only difference.

Apple's also being missing the boat by showing iPhones and iPads being used in all sorts of outdoor activities without having a Sport model with an impressive waterproof, drop-proof Milspec rating.

So much wrong in this comment.
1. iPhone MS isn't that large. They have a good, better, best already. Designing for everyone is designing for no one. Can't please everyone so don't waste time trying.
2. How was the 5C botched? It outsold what the 4S did last year.
3. Apple doesn't have a problem. Why would the plans change according to device?
4. Lots of people use their iPhones outdoors and have no problems. Sport version is a marketing gimmick.

My prediction is the 5.5" will come with a rainbow vomiting unicorn.
post #22 of 93
I can see several reasons for different variants of the A8:

Faster clock speed and maybe enhanced graphics for iPad (Especially an iPad Pro with larger screen.

Same for new AppleTV for console-quality games.

It's been quite a few years since I worked in the semiconductor industry. Back then, they would manufacture to a set of target specs -- then test for those specs. Rejects weren't discarded -- rather they were re-tested to lesser specs for use in lower priced/spec'd devices.

If they still do that, then you could have different yield levels based on testing, from the same manufacturing line -- A8 A8 ...

Also, there may be different variants to better interface/exploit more RAM and Flash storage. I'd like to see a 12" iPad with at least 8 GB RAM and 256 GB Flash.
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post #23 of 93

5.5" iPad nano I could believe (at a push) but not a 5.5" iPhone.

Sounds like a rumour put out by Samsung so Android odd-balls can whinge and moan when when it doesn't happen.

post #24 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dick Applebaum View Post

I can see several reasons for different variants of the A8:

Faster clock speed and maybe enhanced graphics for iPad (Especially an iPad Pro with larger screen.

Same for new AppleTV for console-quality games.

It's been quite a few years since I worked in the semiconductor industry. Back then, they would manufacture to a set of target specs -- then test for those specs. Rejects weren't discarded -- rather they were re-tested to lesser specs for use in lower priced/spec'd devices.

If they still do that, then you could have different yield levels based on testing, from the same manufacturing line -- A8 A8 ...

Also, there may be different variants to better interface/exploit more RAM and Flash storage. I'd like to see a 12" iPad with at least 8 GB RAM and 256 GB Flash.
But does it make sense to artificially bifurcate the iPhone line just to get people to buy one model over the other? Apple deemed the A7 chip adequate for the 4" iPhone, 7.9" iPad and 9.7" iPad.
post #25 of 93

I stopped reading at: "Analyst: ..."

post #26 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rogifan View Post

I think Apple would be making a big mistake if they come out with two new phone sizes and gave the larger phone better specs. Especially considering they basically went the opposite way with iPads last year. All you really had to focus on was what size you wanted. You didn't have to make any compromises. What If I don't want a phablet but still want the best camera/processor/display etc. IMO the only differentiation that would be warranted is something that is specifically suited to a larger screen. Like iPads getting split screen multitasking but perhaps the 4.7" iPhone not getting that feature.

I'm still not convinced a 5.5" device exists, or if if does that Apple is considering it just a larger iPhone. If there's going to be differentiation, IMO it will be a completely different device with a specific purpose, like perhaps mobile gaming. Or maybe in an ironic twist it will have pen support ala the Galaxy Note.

 

Agreed with you, up until the last sentence.

 

"If you see a stylus, they blew it."

- Steve Jobs

post #27 of 93

My final sentence answers your question.

 

Apple can segment the consumer market by designing each iPhone model around the shared needs of those most likely to purchase it. The 5.5" iPhone will *especially appeal to higher-income consumers (men, people in more prosperous nations who spend more time on their iPhones), Chinese buyers (where a larger typing surface is needed), gamers, and users in the enterprise. 

 

I submit (but can't prove) that this group of consumers places a higher value on, and are willing to pay more, for a bundle of faster processor/sapphire glass/extra storage than all other iPhone buyers, considered as a group.  So it makes sense for Apple to target this group when designing the 5.5" model, instead of making it identical to the 4.7" with a 0.8" stretch.  Segmenting one's market in this way is clearly a successful business practice, or GM would not offer both Chevies and Caddies. It's clearly in the interests of consumers, too.  

 

If the 5.5" iPhone 6 is distinguished from the 4.7" model only by its size, the price differential will be perhaps $50. If it's tricked out with complementary features, it'll sell for $100 to $150 more than the 4.7" model. Tim Cook is rational. 

post #28 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rogifan View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dick Applebaum View Post

I can see several reasons for different variants of the A8:

Faster clock speed and maybe enhanced graphics for iPad (Especially an iPad Pro with larger screen.

Same for new AppleTV for console-quality games.

It's been quite a few years since I worked in the semiconductor industry. Back then, they would manufacture to a set of target specs -- then test for those specs. Rejects weren't discarded -- rather they were re-tested to lesser specs for use in lower priced/spec'd devices.

If they still do that, then you could have different yield levels based on testing, from the same manufacturing line -- A8 A8 ...

Also, there may be different variants to better interface/exploit more RAM and Flash storage. I'd like to see a 12" iPad with at least 8 GB RAM and 256 GB Flash.
But does it make sense to artificially bifurcate the iPhone line just to get people to buy one model over the other? Apple deemed the A7 chip adequate for the 4" iPhone, 7.9" iPad and 9.7" iPad.

I don't believe that Apple will "artificially bifurcate the iPhone line" (or the iPad line). Rather, they will say that the new iDevices have the new A8 APU, and leave it (the CPU Spec) at that ... Then they will use any different variants to match the requirements (cost, performance capacity) and intended uses of the specific devices.

This is how they do it now for iPhones:

http://www.apple.com/iphone/compare/


And for the iPad:

http://www.apple.com/ipad/compare/


I don't believe that most people buy on specs -- rather they buy based on the job(s) they want to do.


Edit: Anxiously awaiting beta 5
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post #29 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by jungmark View Post


So much wrong in this comment.
1. iPhone MS isn't that large. They have a good, better, best already. Designing for everyone is designing for no one. Can't please everyone so don't waste time trying.
2. How was the 5C botched? It outsold what the 4S did last year.
3. Apple doesn't have a problem. Why would the plans change according to device?
4. Lots of people use their iPhones outdoors and have no problems. Sport version is a marketing gimmick.

My prediction is the 5.5" will come with a rainbow vomiting unicorn.

 

Agree with everything except for water resistance. The technology is already out there to coat PBCs with a water repellent film that doesn't affect normal operation or cooling. I wouldn't go so far as to market a "sports" model, nor to brag about "mil-spec" submersibility since this would require the use of awkward and easy to lose plastic covers for external ports (a la Samsung). Nonetheless, providing some degree of water resistance seems like a no-brainer as it would give users some peace of mind to use their devices when exposed to perspiration, an occasional rain shower or around damp, poolside environments.

post #30 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by freediverx View Post

Agreed with you, up until the last sentence.

"If you see a stylus, they blew it."
- Steve Jobs
Steve was talking about primary mode of interaction. My fingers will never be better for note taking or drawing.
post #31 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by StanTheMan View Post
 

My final sentence answers your question.

 

Apple can segment the consumer market by designing each iPhone model around the shared needs of those most likely to purchase it. The 5.5" iPhone will *especially appeal to higher-income consumers (men, people in more prosperous nations who spend more time on their iPhones), Chinese buyers (where a larger typing surface is needed), gamers, and users in the enterprise. 

 

I submit (but can't prove) that this group of consumers places a higher value on, and are willing to pay more, for a bundle of faster processor/sapphire glass/extra storage than all other iPhone buyers, considered as a group.  So it makes sense for Apple to target this group when designing the 5.5" model, instead of making it identical to the 4.7" with a 0.8" stretch.  Segmenting one's market in this way is clearly a successful business practice, or GM would not offer both Chevies and Caddies. It's clearly in the interests of consumers, too.  

 

If the 5.5" iPhone 6 is distinguished from the 4.7" model only by its size, the price differential will be perhaps $50. If it's tricked out with complementary features, it'll sell for $100 to $150 more than the 4.7" model. Tim Cook is rational. 

 

I am of the belief that a majority of prospective customers for a flagship iPhone model would expect top-of-the-line features and functionality but would not accept a phablet-sized device. Therefore I posit that if Apple were to market a phablet as their flagship model, while denigrating the normal sized iPhone as a second-tier product, they would alienate more potential customers then they would attract (myself included), and would negatively impact sales and customer loyalty.

 

The mainland Chinese market may very well prefer jumbo sized phones, just like they may prefer gold plating and a diamond studded case,  but Apple will not tarnish their reputation for good taste (and their existing customer base) just to serve the Chinese market.

post #32 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rogifan View Post


Steve was talking about primary mode of interaction. My fingers will never be better for note taking or drawing.


Apple doesn't prevent you from using a stylus, but they're unlikely to ship a tablet with a stylus as that would imply its use is necessary, which it isn't. As far as note taking goes, I can type much faster than I can handwrite, so I do all my note taking without a stylus. (And yes, I've tried both... I used a stylus for about 4 months straight and eventually realized that I wasn't any faster with it so I stopped using it.)

post #33 of 93

More proof that the 5.5 is coming on.

 

So obvious at this point.

post #34 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rogifan View Post

Who decided larger screen = Best? I don't want a 5.5" phone. If Apple goes that route then I'll just keep my 5S and see they they do next year. I'm not going to purchase an inferior device just because I prefer a smaller screen size.

You don't have to purchase it. So what your saying is that if the rumored 4.7" is twice as fast as the 5s, but the rumored 5.5" is a little faster you would feel cheated? Is it just because you couldn't tell people you had the fastest one? I don't get the logic.
post #35 of 93

iPhone 5.5": Fake or not, i will wait a little after the launch of 4.7"

post #36 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by RalphMouth View Post

Apple Anal-cyst here!

I can also make predictions.

Apple could also equip all of their iPhone 6 variants with the same Ax processor. Now how do I get paid?

When you add that you made "supply chain checks" 1wink.gif
Yeah, well, you know, that's just, like, my opinion, man.
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post #37 of 93

I find this article BS. Really, By comparing the chip clock for iPad Air vs iPad mini with 5.5" vs 4.7" iPhone is totally crap. iPad and iPad mini screen size difference is almost 2" diagonal while iPhone 5.5" (if it's true) is only 0.8" different from 4.7" version. I don't see any reason why Apple must clock the chip differently for these iPhone 6 which in turn creates more complication for productions.

post #38 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by Silver Shadow View Post

You don't have to purchase it. So what your saying is that if the rumored 4.7" is twice as fast as the 5s, but the rumored 5.5" is a little faster you would feel cheated? Is it just because you couldn't tell people you had the fastest one? I don't get the logic.
No. I'm not talking about if the rumored 5.5" iPhone has a slightly higher clock speed (or slightly better battery life just because it has a bigger battery). I'm talking about real differences like sapphire display or better camera or completely different chip. I'm talking about artificially making the 4.7" device inferior for no other reason than Apple trying to create "differentiation" (when screen size alone should be the differentiation). Btw, I still don't believe Apple is going to do this, and IF there is a 5.5 device it will be a completely different device (ala the Note being different than the Galaxy S) or will have nearly identical specs to its 4.7" sibling.
post #39 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by Silver Shadow View Post


You don't have to purchase it. So what your saying is that if the rumored 4.7" is twice as fast as the 5s, but the rumored 5.5" is a little faster you would feel cheated? Is it just because you couldn't tell people you had the fastest one? I don't get the logic.


Most people wouldn't care about a small difference in processor clock speed. But there would definitely be an issue if the larger phone came with exclusive features like a better camera or some new functionality.

post #40 of 93

5.5 is going to need a faster chip.

 

more pixels need faster chip.

 

 

with this move all screen sizes will be satisfied.  Screen size will not be an excuse not to get an ipad/iphone

4/4.7/5.5

7.9/9.7

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