Rumor: Apple to opt for glass front and back with next-gen iPhone, perhaps use iPhone 4-style stainless steel frame

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Date: Wednesday, January 11th, 2017, 05:04
Category: Hardware, iPhone, iPhone SE, Rumor, Touch ID

It’s the supply chain rumors that make things interesting.

In the latest supply chain report, Apple is thought to be abandoning aluminum in favor of glass for the next-gen iPhone’s back and front. It’s thought that the company will use a stainless steel frame to hold together glass panels along the lines of the iPhone 4 design.

The next-generation iPhone is expected to abandon its conventional aluminum back cover design and will adopt a new design using two reinforced glass panes and a metal frame in the middle. The metal bezel will be made of stainless steel using a forging process to enhance its sturdiness and reduce costs and manufacturing time.

The prospect of a mostly-glass design was raised via a KGI research note last April and supported by subsequent reports from Foxconn as well as glass and other suppliers.

Apple is also thought to be working towards embedding the Home button and Touch ID sensor into the display in a near bezel-free design this year.

The popularity of the Jet Black iPhone 7 also provides evidence that a glossy black look would go down well with consumers.

There are currently conflicting reports as to whether Apple will choose a curved screen or a flat-sided design similar to the iPhone 4 and 5 as well as the iPhone SE. Some reports suggest that a curved screen might be offered only in a top-tier model.

Using glass as the primary material would potentially make long-distance wireless charging more practical, another potential feature that has been the subject of a series of rumors.

Finally, Apple is thought to potentially be working on a special 10th anniversary iPhone, which is has done with some products in the past. The consensus view on Wall Street is that the iPhone 8 will generate a ‘super-cycle,’ exceeding sales of the first larger-screened models, the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus.

Stay tuned for additional details as they become available.

Via 9to5Mac and DigiTimes

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