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Premium limited edition iPhone 6 models could come with sapphire display

There has been rumours around Apple introducing synthetic sapphire glass displays for future devices, and this week the Wall Street Journal reported that Apple could be delivering sapphire glass versions of the new iPhone 6 was early as in the next few weeks, but it won’t be on the standard models.

iphone6-sapphire

According to WSJ sources ‘familiar with the matter’ we could be talking about new high-end models of the new iPhone, possibly made as a limited edition for those especially interested. The sapphire screen is likely to appear on both rumored iPhone 6 screen sizes (4.7-inch and 5.5-inch), that is if there is any truth in the rumours, around both sapphire and screen sizes.

The rumour is also heavily caveated, which does not leave me with a lot of confidence in its validity, as they go on to say that issues stopping the sapphire screen could be ability to source enough material. Knowing how controlled the Apple supply chain is, it does not make sense for them to be considering the material so close to release date without having certainty of availability.

While the current corning Gorilla glass that Apple uses in the production of the iPhone costs around $3 per device, the sapphire screen will cost them around $16 per device to produce. Now that does not sound like too much, but given the margins Apple works on, it would have a significant uplift on the end price for us as consumers.

Apple is already using some sapphire glass in their iPhone as part of the Touch ID fingerprint sensor and to protect the camera lens, and they not long ago struck a deal with GT Advanced Technology for producing sapphire glass at their Phoenix plant. The main benefits of using sapphire glass front panel is that it’s highly scratch resistant, while the downside is that when used in large quantities it can be more prone to shattering, and make viewing display in bright sunlight harder.

As to the future of sapphire glass iPhone models, let’s wait and see what the next few weeks brings.

Source: WSJ via AppleInsider

Filed in: iPhone

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