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iPhone 6 rumor rollup for the week ending March 14

John Cox | March 18, 2014
With spring stirring, so is the iOSphere's optimism, not to mention Wall Street's. The thrilling prospect of a Big Screen iPhone 6 is prompting visions of an upgrade tidal wave.

With spring stirring, so is the iOSphere's optimism, not to mention Wall Street's. The thrilling prospect of a Big Screen iPhone 6 is prompting visions of an upgrade tidal wave.

Also this week: more hints of iOS 8, a work progressing; a patent for a range finder sparks dreams, somehow, of "Kinect-like" motion sensing and 3D..something or other; Digitimes discovers the perils of questioning the Dawn of the Age of Sapphire.

You read it here second.

iPhone 6 will have a 5-inch screen, and zillions of iPhone and Android users will upgrade

The 5-inch screen that the iPhone 6 is bound to have "will lead to a big replacement cycle that may poach customers of Samsung," writes Larry Dignan, of ZDNet. "That theory is what has analysts getting wound up about Apple's earnings prospects.

Dignan gets a bit wound up himself at the prospect.

He cites comments by two stock analysts. One is Pacific Crest's Andy Hargreaves: "We believe Apple can sell a 4.7-inch iPhone at a subsidized price of $299, which should generate incremental gross profit on replacement sales and attract new customers that had previously purchased Android phones specifically for a larger screen."

"Is the chorus of analysts right about the iPhone 6?" wonders Dignan. "Probably. As noted before, the Android launches of late have been lackluster. Apple just doesn't have to do much with the iPhone 6 beyond offering a larger screen. Other improvements are likely to be gravy."

Somehow, The Rollup thinks it all may be a bit more...complicated.

When Apple announced the iPad with Retina display, it increased the starting price from $329 to $399, a 21 percent rise presumably in response to the higher costs associated with the advanced display. The screen assembly for a larger-than-4-inch iPhone also will be more expensive. Today, the starting price of the iPhone 5S is $199, with a two-year contract. Hargreaves is estimating that a 4.7-inch iPhone 6 will sell for $299, which is a 50% increase.

It's really unclear at this point what Apple intends with the iPhone brand. The 5C was the first extension. If it deems the time is right for a larger-screen phone, will that be for a single, high-end model the follow-on to the 5S? Will it be a third model? Will Apple stick with two models and give them both the same sized larger screen? Is the company really prepared to increase the price of its phone?

Those questions make Dignan's assertion "Apple just doesn't have to do much with the iPhone 6 beyond offering a larger screen." sound a bit oversimplified.

iPhone 6 firmware iOS 8 to have improved iCloud integration

 

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