While financial analysts typically serve the interests of their clients, not the general tech reading community, KGI Securities' Ming Chi Kuo has been among the most reliable when it comes to Apple product predictions. This year he's released an investment not that features 11 predictions for the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus.
- Force Touch will be the biggest upgraded selling point, but also one of the main bottlenecks of the supply chain. Force Touch can enhance user experience due to more input methods and support of handwritten signatures, which is beneficial for expanding in the commercial market;
- Screen will remain at 4.7 and 5.5 inches, with resolution the same as existing models. There will be no new 4-inch model;
- There will be an additional casing color, rose gold, matching the rose gold Apple Watch Edition;
- The camera will have a pixel upgrade, likely to 12 MP;
- One microphone will be added near the speaker to enhance voice quality;
- The A9 processor with upgraded 2GB LPDDR4 will be adopted;
- The bending issue will be improved by using different casing materials and internal mechanical design changes;
- If drop test issues can be resolved, the 5.5-inch model will have a limited number of units with sapphire cover lens;
- The recognition rate of Touch ID will be improved further in a bid to promote Apple Pay;
- Gesture control support;
- It's expected that mass production will start in mid-to-late August. Total shipments will be 80-90mn in 2015, with a 2:1 ratio of 4.7-inch and 5.5-inch models.
If Apple holds to pattern, an updated Apple A9 is close to a certainty. Rose gold, as mentioned, would match the Apple Watch finish of the same name. A 12 megapixel camera, especially if Apple maintains the quality of their optics and image signal processor (ISP) would not only be more competitive, but offer additional flexibility for things like cropping and sampling. No 4-inch option would certainly disappoint those who've been clinging to their iPhone 5s.
Force Touch has been an easy bet for the iPhone since the launch of the Apple Watch and new MacBook Force Touch trackpad. It's how the company works. Handwritten signatures are something that can be done on any touch screen. Force Touch just makes them better. Gesture control could refer to the gesture navigation previously found only in the iPad product line, or it could refer to the type of Force Touch controls found on the new MacBook.
We'll know for sure when Apple announces the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus, likely this September.
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