Friday, May 27, 2011

Curved Glass Screen for the iPhone 5?

Already, the rumors about the specs on the Apple iPhone 5 are rolling out. In the latest edition of the Taiwanese newspaper DigiTimes, there are reports of the latest edition of Apple's incredibly popular smartphone having a curved glass display screen. The reports said that it would be the same type of screen that has been featured on Apple’s iPod since the fourth-generation iPod Nano was released in 2008.

Now, DigiTimes doesn’t just make this claim out of nowhere. The newspaper cites sources that have something to do with Apple’s supply chain in Taiwan. DigiTimes stated that Apple recently bought 200 to 300 glass-cutting machines that could be used to cut display screens. The report went on to say that Apple had to buy these special glass-cutting machines because “cover glass makers have apparently been reluctant to commit investment to the purchase of glass cutting equipment due to the high capital involved.” The machines are being stored at one of Apple’s assembly plants until it believes that the “yield rates” are satisfactory.

There are several recently released smartphones that have decided to use the curved glass design for their display. Samsung’s Nexus S, LG’s G2x with Google and Samsung’s Galaxy Prevail all have adopted the curved glass. Many people really like the glass that is used on the Nexus S. They say that it feels more comfortable when you hold it up against your face. Engadget said in their review of the Nexus S that the curved glass does not really change the display quality of the phone. Instead, using curved glass shows Apple's focus on aesthetics and “perceived usability.”

The rumors about the iPhone 5 are only going to continue to stack up, especially after the expected June announcement at Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference, where Apple first officially announced the iPhone 4. Details are already beginning to slip out via America’s top mobile companies. Just last week, an AT&T rep told a customer that the iPhone 5 would not make its debut in June or July, and the Verizon CFO let it slip that the next generation Verizon iPhone will work on CDMA and GSM networks.

Until Apple makes the official announcement about the iPhone 5, I guess that we will all have to sit here and speculate and hang on to the slip-ups of the reps and execs at AT&T and Verizon. Hopefully we won’t have to wait too long, but who knows? Apple sure likes to keep the details on its products a secret for as long as possible. I guess we’ll just see.

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