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Apple Might Release An iPhone 7 With Small 4-Inch Display

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A new report reveals that AU Optronics will supply display panels to upcoming Apple handsets, possibly the iPhone 6S or iPhone 7.

AU Optronics (AUO), a Taiwan-based manufacturer, will reportedly ink a deal with Apple to supply displays for future models, which is said to be either the iPhone 6S or iPhone 7. The company is said to supply screens of various sizes, including a relatively small 4-inch version along with 4.7-inch and 5.5-inch LTPS in-cell displays.

A smaller iPhone in the works

Digitimes reported on Tuesday, citing TechNews (translated version here), that a new 4-inch ?iPhone 7? model is in the works. The Cupertino-based tech giant is reportedly on the verge of signing an agreement with AUO to produce screens for a new, economical iPhone variant that is slated to be released in 2016.

Apple?s move to seek AUO as a component supplier is due to a supposed unsatisfactory display yield from current suppliers. The company is apparently ?looking for additional panel suppliers both for current and upcoming iPhones in order to secure shipments, as other makers? yields have been fluctuating,? supply chain sources have said as quoted in the Digitimes post.

BidnessETC mentioned that the tech giant?s primary suppliers are LG Display and Japan Display Corporation. Its secondary display provider is Sharp, which also handles the 4.7-inch screen for the current flagship iPhone 6.

Upcoming iPhone models

Aside from the alleged 4-inch iPhone 7 handset, AUO is also said to manufacture 4.7-inch and 5.5-inch models equipped with LTPS In-Cell displays and is presently sending samples to Apple for approval and certification. The Taiwanese manufacturer plans to improve its production capacity by ?transforming its L3A and 3B fabs to low-temperature poly-silicon (LTPS) displays, in a bid to strategically continue providing new displays for the iPhone maker,? BidnessETC noted.

If this report turns out to be accurate then it suggests that Apple?s 4-inch iPhone 7 variant is will be an imminent release, according to tech site iPhoneHacks.com. Recent reports claim that consumers will be also be treated with a 4-inch iPhone 6c later this year, and it appears that the company might be planning to refresh that model again for 2016.

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Photo Credit: ?Apple

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