iPhone 6 may not sport sapphire glass this year, but future models will

By Alexandra Burlacu | Aug 19, 2014 08:28 AM EDT

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Apple's plans to use sapphire glass this year for its highly-anticipated iPhone 6 may be delayed until next year, according to one analyst.

The iPhone 6 is one of the hottest devices expected to debut this year and its purported sapphire glass display has created a lot of hype. According to the latest news, however, the company may be forced to put its iPhone 6 sapphire glass plans on hold for now.

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Apple Insider obtained the latest investors note from JP Morgan analyst Rod Hall, who believes that Apple will not be able to release its next-generation iPhone with a sapphire display this year. On the other hand, the analyst did not rule out this possibility altogether, as he reckoned there is still hope to see a limited number of handsets with sapphire glass this year.

Rumors of sapphire glass covers for the iPhone 6 display have been making rounds for quite some time now, and some earlier videos even claimed to show the material's durability.

In more recent times the Wall Street Journal reported last week that Apple would release an iPhone with a sapphire display this year, but the device would commend a higher price tag due to the higher manufacturing costs. Also last week, however, TechCrunch reported that Apple managed to reduce the cost of the device by teaming up with a manufacturer for an innovative process called Hyperion for the much-touted sapphire glass screen.

Hall agreed with TechCrunch regarding the reduced manufacturing cost of sapphire displays for the iPhone 6, but added that mass production would pose some serious challenges for Apple. Also, the analyst claimed that the cost of manufacturing sapphire displays will be roughly ten timed higher than that of making Gorilla Glass displays.

"Although we have channel indications that some sapphire devices will be produced, we actually lean toward Apple selling no sapphire phones this year," reckoned Hall, as cited by Apple Insider.

"On sapphire as a feature - we see it as a huge phone seller. The screens are reportedly unscratchable (except by diamond) and virtually indestructible. We believe most people will want sapphire when and if it ever becomes available."

Meanwhile, some recent reports speculated that only the 64GB model of the 5.5-inch iPhone 6 would boast sapphire glass, albeit other reports suggested that the 64GB 4.7-model may get it as well.

It all remains in the rumor state for now, however, as Apple has not made any official announcement so far. Nevertheless, the company is expected to take the wraps off its new-generation iPhone 6 on Sept. 9, and we'll bring you the latest news as soon as they become available.

 

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