Curved iPhone Screen The Next Big Thing From Apple, Insider Says

By Ben Wolford on November 13, 2013 3:36 PM EST

Apple is said to be developing a bigger iPhone with a curved screen.
Apple is said to be developing a bigger iPhone with a curved screen.

Apple's next iPhone screen will be curved and feature sensors that can feel pressure, a company insider told Bloomberg this week. The two new models under development will also be Apple's largest iPhones yet, with screens of 4.7 and 5.5 inches.

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These plans, according to Bloomberg's source, would probably be released toward the end of 2014. As for what the iPhone 6 might look like, an industry analyst told the International Business Times that people should govern their speculation. Avi Greengart of Current Analysis said Apple is just testing the technology.

"I have absolutely no doubt whatsoever that Apple is investigating curved displays and any other component coming on to the scenes. That's what Apple does. Apple tests things out internally to see if they make sense," he said. "That doesn't mean, however, that just because Apple looked at something that they're going to release it. They probably have watches, glasses, hover boards and who knows what else just to see what it's like."

Nonetheless, the news sparked a storm of conjecture about the future of smartphone technology.

The size and shape of the screens inevitably drew comparisons to Apple's top global competitor, Samsung, which dominates the worldwide market. Its Galaxy Note 3 is 5.7 inches, and its Galaxy Round is the first the smartphone to feature a curved screen (it's also 5.7 inches).

The Galaxy Round's screen curves up at the edges, like a semicircle. In announcing the technology in October, Samsung said the design allows users "to check information such as the date, time, missed calls and battery easily when [the] home screen is off, and the Gravity Effect for creating visual interaction with the screen by tilting the device." Users would also be able to change their music, while the screen is off, by tilting it to the right or left.

It's unclear exactly what Apple's curved screen technology would look like or what the functional benefits would be. The unnamed Apple source said the working draft has the glass sloping downward at the edges, more dome than bowl. The company has not officially confirmed the rumors.

"There has been quite a bit of talk about the coming wave of curved smartphone screens; however, there has not been a lot of talk about what we will be able to do with them," technology industry analyst Jeff Kagan told the London Telegraph

Analyists, however, say that a larger screen is a near certainty in the iPhone 6, which is expected to come out next year. The iPhone 5 display size is 4 inches. Meanwhile, the rival Galaxy S III display is 4.8 inches.

The "pressure-sensitive technology," as Bloomberg put it, definitely won't be released in the next batch of iPhones, according to their source. It's still in the very early stages of development, and it's not clear when Apple will release it.

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