The suppliers of Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) started the initial production of new iPhones with Force Touch feature, according to Bloomberg based on information familiar with the situation.
Force Touch senses the level of force exerted by users on a touch pad or a similar display surface, and responds accordingly. The feature uses tiny electrodes around the display to distinguish between a light tap and a deep press and triggers instant access to contextually specific controls.
Apple first integrated the Force Touch feature in the Apple Watch and the latest MacBook model. The tech giant is bringing the feature to its new iPhones two years after it began working with suppliers, to perfect the pressure-sensitive displays.
Force Touch could help Apple stay ahead in the smartphone market
Integrating the Force Touch feature is the latest strategy of Apple to remain ahead of the competition in the smartphone market particularly from Samsung Electronics Co Ltd (KRX:005930). The South Korean electronics manufacturer recently released the Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge with a dual-edge display.
According to the sources, the new iPhone models will sport a 4.7-inch and a 5.5-inch display, similar to the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus. The new devices will also have a similar exterior design. Apple suppliers are expected to boost their volume manufacturing as early as next month.
KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo suggested that the new iPhone models would be thicker by 0.2mm because of the integration of the Force Touch. It is uncertain whether his speculation is accurate.
Sources told Bloomberg that the final assembly of the new iPhone models is expected to run smoothly because of its design similarity with the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus. However, they suggested the possibility that the timing and production volume of the iPhones with Force Touch feature would be impacted by the supply and yield of displays for the devices.
Apple is expected to release the Force Touch enabled iPhones in September
Technology observers are expecting Apple to release the Force Touch enabled iPhones in September. There were speculations that the tech giant’s next-generation iPhones will sport a better camera, improved Touch ID, more RAM and it will come in a rose gold color. The new devices will likely be called iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus.
During the second quarter ended March 28, 2015, Apple sold 61.2 million units of iPhones, higher than the 58.1 million estimated by Wall Street analysts. The iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus helped Apple grab Samsung’s position as the king of the global smartphone market.