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It seems we'll never again have any surprises from an iPhone release, thanks to incessant rumors about nearly every little detail finding its way to our eyes and ears months ahead of time. And now it's going to have a thinner screen, too.
The Wall Street Journal is reporting that Apple's next iPhone "currently being manufactured by Asian component makers" will arrive this fall with a thinner screen than ever before, thanks to the combined might of Sharp, LG Display and Japan Display Inc.
"The technology integrates touch sensors into the LCD, making it unnecessary to have a separate touch-screen layer," explains DisplaySearch analyst Hiroshi Hayase on the new in-cell technology. "The absence of the layer, usually about half a millimeter thick, not only makes the whole screen thinner, but the quality of displayed images would improve."
In-cell technology comes at a convenient time for Apple as rival Samsung is pushing "organic light-emitting displays" as a key feature of its latest Galaxy S III Android handset, which features a 4.8-inch OLED screen, yet is even thinner than the current iPhone 4S.
"A thinner screen in the next iPhone could make the whole device slimmer, or make extra room available for other components such as batteries," the report reveals, which could be crucial if rumors that the handset will use 4G LTE data prove true.
"But in-cell touch screens are harder to manufacture than conventional LCD screens," the report continues. "The people familiar with the situation said that LCD makers are finding the manufacturing process challenging and time-consuming as they scramble to achieve high yield rates."
The next iPhone is widely expected to include a 4.0-inch display, which is made possible by elongating the vertical height of the handset.
Follow this article’s author, J.R. Bookwalter on Twitter
(Image courtesy of Macotakara.jp)