Apple may release the next major iPhone in 2014.
It may not be able to release an iPhone with ground breaking specs and features this year, predicted Jefferies analyst Peter Misek who maintains a high level of confidence regarding his hardware predictions. As with any research-based report, the information within should be taken with a grain of salt.
Misek said that the original plan is to release an iPhone with a bigger screen display. However, Apple's screen suppliers are struggling with the manufacturing process in increasing the size of the 4-inch iPhone to 4.8-inches.
CEO Tim Cook hinted that the upcoming smartphone tagged as iPhone 6 or iPhone 5S at the Apple Q1 2013 earnings call. Tim Cook also assured investors that Apple picked the right screen size when upgrading to a 4-inch Retina Display. He also carefully dodged talking about the rumours towards the next iPhone. This suggests that Apple will stick with its old screen size.
Apple's iPhone uses a technology called "in-cell," which essentially meshes the touch screen with the glass screen into one thin display. Its partners can't get good enough yields making those displays bigger to launch the iPhone 6 this year.
Misek also believes there is another reason Apple could be holding back on the iPhone 6 is its processor. Apple plans to equip the new handset with a quad core or eight core chip processor. However, the production of the chips will be completed in 2014.
To take advantage of the new processing speed, iOS will have to be upgraded. The new iOS architecture might not be ready until 2014.
Another possible reason for the delay is the integration of other features that Apple planned to include such as the Near Field Communication and fingerprint sensor.
While Tim Cook has recently been stressing that Apple has the exact right screen size with the iPhone 5, Misek believes he's only saying it to prevent anyone from not buying iPhones and waiting for the next model.
Misek concluded that Apple will release a low-cost iPhone in June, as well as an iPhone 5S, which a handset without major upgrades.