Production of Apple’s iPhone 6, its next model that comes in two sizes, is rumored to start in China in July, as is production of the fitness- and health-oriented iWatch, which may end up becoming an FDA-approved medical device.
With the HTC One M8, Sony Xperia Z2 and Samsung Galaxy S5 now on the market, there is a general consensus among Apple users that the iPhone 6 absolutely must have a larger screen.
The smartphones, according to an average of mainstream media predictions, will come in two screen sizes – 4.7 and 5.5 inches. According to Bloomberg, there may have been problems producing the 5.5-inch model, so the smaller one will probably be released first, probably in September/October 2014.
Both new models are expected to have in-cell touch panel technology built into the screen, making the new device thinner compared to the iPhone 5, which uses standard touch panel films.
The iPhone 5S and iPhone 5C were just straightforward updates on older models. Consumers are expecting and rumors abound that the iPhone 6 will be one of the most pivotal products in the Apple brand’s history.
TechRadar carried out a survey involving 4,109 iPhone users and found that the “iPhone 6 is the most anticipated Apple smartphone ever, with interest easily outstripping that of the iPhone 5S or iPhone 5.”
iWatch production soon
Apple’s iWatch, rumored to have a 2.5-inch arched rectangular LG screen that wraps around the wrist, is also expected to start production next month, and will be launched in October 2014.
Given that there are several different wrist sizes, do not be surprised if Apple releases many different versions of the iWatch. To make it as scratch-proof as possible, the screen will probably be covered with sapphire glass.
The iWatch is expected to be a device running iOS with biometrics and a range of other features that will provide integration with other iOS devices.
The screen is believed to contain a sensor that monitors the person’s pulse without a chest strap. The iWatch will have to be paired with an iPhone if you want to send messages or voice chat with other people.
The Wall Street Journal believes the iWatch will have at least ten sensors, focusing primarily on health and fitness, and offering much more than what the wearable devices Nike or Samsung currently feature.
FDA certification holding back iWatch launch
According to LaoYaoBa.com, a Chinese website that cited “Apple Insiders”, the iWatch’s design, technical specifications, features etc. have already been developed. What is delaying the onset of production is the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), i.e. it needs to be FDA-certified beforehand.
If this is true, the device will be packed with biometric sensors, which may cover blood glucose, blood pressure and heart rate monitoring. The cited sources also mention that the watch may have a sweat-analysis sensor. It seems Apple is set to launch a high-tech watch which is also a medical device (medical equipment).
If the iWatch does become an FDA-approved medical device, and insurance companies and universal health care services around the world opt to pay for it, the sales potential would be gigantic.
Apple executives met with FDA officials several times last year. According to the FDA, the meetings were about whether some of its products and software need to be submitted for approval.
AppleToolbox quotes an FDA Memorandum of Meeting (December 12, 2013):
“Apple will work closely with FDA as they develop future products. The earlier FDA is involved and advising, the less likely that Apple would be caught by surprise later when they wish to release a new product, if that product must be regulated.”