Next-generation iPhone 5 to have curved glass?

23 May 2011

The next-generation model of the Apple iPhone is rumoured to feature curved glass, the latest industry reports from Taiwan suggest.

Taiwanese industry paper DigiTimes has suggested Apple has ordered 300 glass cutting machines to help manufacturers overcome their reluctance to invest in glass equipment due to the high capital investment required.

The machines are being stored at various associated assembly plants and will be brought online once yield rates for curved glass reach a certain level.

The report said there has been no timetable prepared for the production of the iPhone 5, as Apple and manufacturers are still working on yield rates for cover glass, glass cutting, lamination and touch sensors.

The iPhone 5 they are talking about may not be available until next year.

The iPhone 4S

In the meantime, there is growing consensus among analysts that the next iPhone model to reach the market in autumn will not be the iPhone 5 but an iPhone 4S that will be built on the same chassis as the iPhone 4 but will come with an A5 dual-core processor, an 8-megapixel camera and improved Retina capabilities.

The iPhone 4S, it is believed, will not have LTE 4G capability due to a shortage of Qualcomm LTE chips. If that is the case, Apple will debut LTE capability on the iPhone 5 when it debuts possibly next year.

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years