Last week, rumors popped up, however, that the Japanese company Sharp has fallen behind its production schedule of Apple screens. According to a report from Reuters, a source “familiar with Sharp’s production operations” said that there’s been some talk about Apple using financial incentives to get the manufacturer’s production yields back on track in order to avoid iPhone delays.
Screen: Sharp is one of the suppliers tapped to produce Apple screens, which are said to be one of the main features changing in this generation of the iPhone.
According to a report from The Wall Street Journal, Apple may use a thinner screen that will allow the next smartphone to be even lighter than the current model.
The screen, of course, is also supposed to be larger — most reports put the size at a 4-inch diagonal, which is significantly more screen real estate than the 3.5-inch screen that currently graces the company’s phone.
NFC? Maybe not: After a supposed picture of the front of Apple’s next iPhone emerged on a Chinese tech site, there was a renewed discussion of whether or not Apple would include near-field communications technology in the next generation of its phone. But the rumor mill took a turn, thanks to some strong analysis from AnandTech and a one-word dismissal from The Loop’s well-sourced Jim Dalrymple.
According to Brian Klug and Anand Lal Shimpi of AnandTech, the materials picture in the “leak” itself indicate that a NFC reader wouldn’t work well in that spot at all. The metal plate in the iPhone, they said, would block signals that the NFC reader needs, and there simply isn’t a reasonable place to put it anywhere else on the phone.
“[Given] the very little space at top and bottom dedicated to those glass RF windows, you can almost entirely rule it out,” the two wrote in a blog post. “It shouldn't need saying, but having a huge ground plane (the unibody metal back case) in the way of your NFC antenna will seriously degrade performance, thus only the top or bottom windows are logical places to put it.”
But placing the chip near the top or bottom windows would make the chip awkward to use, Klug and Shimpi said, noting that would not be the “Apple-like level of polish” that one would expect from the company. Phones that currently have the chips, they noted, tend to place them in the middle of the phone, in order to make it as easy as possible to scan.
Adding strength to strength, the AnandTech piece got a bigger credibility bump when Dalrymple — who has a very good track record on Apple — linked to the piece and gave his customary one-word confirmation: “Yep.”