5.5-inch iPhone 6’s Processer May Be “More Powerful Than You Think”

Apple-A8With September drawing near, more speculation about the next-generation iPhone is circulating. We know, of course, that there will be two display sizes for the iPhone 6: a 5.5- and a 4.7-inch variant. What one Wall Street analyst, Timothy Arcuri of Cowen & Co., is predicting is the difference between the models’ application processors and touch modules. Arcuri cites a supply chain check, stating that the 5.5-inch iPhone model may have a more powerful A8 processor than its 4.7-inch counterpart, as well as a different touch module.

No details were given about exactly how much the processors and touch modules would differ; however, this disparity isn’t a new phenomenon with Apple. The iPad Air’s A7 processor runs at 1.39 gigahertz compared to its pretty much identical counterpart, which runs at 1.29 GZh, in the iPad Mini with Retina display.

With the iPhone 6 models, the difference could be more significant. According to Arcuri, the 5.5-inch model’s processor “could ship with a larger die, hinting at a more wide-ranging architectural split.” This might signal “additional on-die silicon” in the model, perhaps meaning “a larger array of graphics processing cores.” It could also indicate two different manufacturers using two different processes. Earlier rumors suggested that Apple would split manufacturing of the A8 between Taiwanese TSMC and Samsung. Those rumors have been countered by reports saying that TSMC has the full order and not Samsung.

Arcuri indicated that besides the two different processors, the iPhone 6 models would have differing touch modules as well, with Taipei-based TPK as the likely manufacturer.

The iPhone 6 is expected to be featured at an event in September. The 4.7-inch model may debut first, and the 5.5-inch model may arrive several months afterward.

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