Apple’s iPhone 5
The Wall Street Journal calims that Apple could be developing a phablet.
©AFP PHOTO/MARTIN BUREAU

The latest reports claim that the company is looking at 4-inch+ screens for its iPhones and 13-inch displays for future iPads.

According to The Wall Street Journal, which, along with the New York Times and Bloomberg has a reputation for accurate leaks concerning the world’s most secretive consumer technology firm, Apple’s Asian suppliers say the company has ordered larger screens in the hopes of developing its existing product line.

Apple’s iPhone 4 and 4S have 3.5-inch displays, the iPhone 5 a 4-inch screen while the iPad Mini and full-sized iPad boast 7.9-inch and 9.7-inch displays respectively.

The Wall Street Journal’s report suggests that the new screens, purported to be 4.7-inch and even 5.7-inch for phones, could feature in future handsets or are simply part of Apple’s ongoing research and development.

All recent rumors focused on Apple’s upcoming device releases point to a new iPhone with better internal specifications than the iPhone 5 and an embedded fingerprint scanner in the screen or homekey button, but no screen size or physical form changes.

However, recent image leaks point to the possibility that the new flagship phone will be accompanied on its launch by a budget iPhone, available in a range of colors and with a polycarbonate casing (like the original iPod) rather than an anodised aluminium finish. Both devices are expected to be officially revealed in September along with updated versions of the iPad and iPad Mini.

The iPhone is still one of the best handsets on the market in terms of quality and performance, but if judged purely on screen size it has been left trailing in the wake of a number of Android devices, such as the Samsung Galaxy SIV and the HTC One which offer 4.99-inch HD and 4.7-inch HD screens respectively.

The Wall Street Journal claims that Apple is following market trends and is attempting to offer a device for every type of consumer (just like Samsung), be it a mini tablet or a maxi phone, but looking at the company’s historical approach to design, development and devices, it won’t deviate from a small handful of products unless it can guarantee that the customer experience and user satisfaction is as good as or better than anything currently available.

Something which was made abundantly clear when Apple’s CEO Tim Cook was quizzed at the All Things D D11 conference in May. When asked about the growing popularity of phablets and whether or not Apple intended to adopt larger screens, Cook responded: “A large screen today comes with a lot of trade-offs. People do look at the size, but they also look at things like whether the photos show the proper color, battery life, brightness, longevity … At this point, we’ve felt the Retina is overwhelmingly the best.” AFP RELAX NEWS