The typical unnamed sources from the upsteam supply chain have informed DigiTimes that Apple will likely launch the next iPhone in May 2014 that will sport an even larger screen and a 20 nm processor manufactured by TSMC. That would seemingly break the company's current September release schedule, but then again Apple may be moving back to its former summertime release.
In addition to the larger iPhone, sources claim that Apple is working on the previously reported 12.9-inch tablet that's slated for October 2014. They believe that due to Apple and Samsung working on such large devices, their presence may have a huge impact on Ultrabook demand. Throw in an attachable Bluetooth keyboard and the sources could be right.
As we've already heard in prior reports, Apple's large tablet will be manufactured by Quanta Computer. Sources said that Apple is considering both a 12.9-inch and a 13.3-inch panel, but will likely settle on the smaller model. Sources speculate that this device will replace Apple's 11-inch MacBook Air.
News of a larger iPhone in May arrives as Apple finally signs a deal with China Mobile (opens in new tab), the world's largest phone company. As part of the agreement, the iPhone 5s and iPhone 5c will be available from China Mobile's retail stores and Apple's own retail stores across mainland China beginning on Friday, January 17, 2014.
The iPhone 5s was be made available for pre-registration from China's official website and customer service hotline "10086" on Wednesday, December 25, 2013. Fortunately for Apple, the deal arrives one month before China's Lunar New Year holiday in late January, one of the country's big gift-buying season.
"Apple has enormous respect for China Mobile and we are excited to begin working together. China is an extremely important market for Apple and our partnership with China Mobile presents us the opportunity to bring iPhone to the customers of the world's largest network," said Tim Cook, Apple CEO.
Apple already sells iPhone devices through two smaller mobile companies in China. The new deal, which went through six years of negotiations, is expected to help Apple battle Samsung and its cheaper Android phones.