Apple Inc is exploring launching iPhones with bigger screens, as well as cheaper models in a range of colors, over the next year, said four people with knowledge of the matter, as it takes a cue from rival Samsung Electronics.
Has the lion succumbed to being a lamb instead? Could be so. Once having ruled the smartphone market, Apple now appears withered by the market assault of Samsung as well as investor speculation.
Critics say its pace of innovation has slowed since the death of legendary co-founder Steve Jobs.
For this year, Apple is expected to launch two new models, widely referred to as the iPhone 5S, with new fingerprint technology, and a cheaper version in plastic casing, supply chain sources have said.
Apple plans to dress up the cheaper phone in a range of 5-6 colors to differentiate it from the more expensive model that has traditionally come only in black and white.
For next year, Apple is looking at introducing at least two bigger iPhones – one with a 4.7-inch screen and one with a 5.7-inch screen – said the sources, including those in the supply chain in Asia.
They said suppliers have been approached with plans for the larger screens, but noted it is still unclear whether Apple will actually launch its flagship product in the larger sizes.
Asked at last month’s AllThingsD industry conference why Apple hasn’t launched different sized iPhones, CEO Tim Cook said: “We haven’t so far. That doesn’t shut off the future.”
Looks like the pressure might actually cut that umbilical cord, known as the 3.5-inch screen Jobs famously deemed “the perfect size for consumers.”
With all of the nods to Android that iOS 7 also appears to include, maybe Apple will change their slogan to something Samsung-sounding.