Morgan Stanley analyst Katy Huberty recently met with Asian component suppliers, and left with knowledge that Apple will allegedly ramp up production of both the next-generation iPhone 5S and low-cost budget iPhone in June and July. That timeframe lines up with an earlier report claiming that Sharp will begin producing iPhone 5S displays next month.
Both new iPhone models are on track for a September release, presumably alongside the iOS 7 software update. A low-priced iPhone could perform exceptionally well in emerging markets, such as China and India, over more expensive, carrier-subsidized handsets.
Moreover, despite Tim Cook advising that interpreting supply chain data is foolish, Huberty claims that iPhone 5 shipments are no longer reduced and in line with demand.
“After a slow start, iPhone 5, is now on track to meet carrier volume expectations and iPhone 4 price cuts could stimulate incremental demand near-term,” Huberty wrote. “Carriers see the opportunity for Apple to expand market coverage with 5-inch and lower-priced iPhones over time. TD-LTE licenses, and related phone launches, are expected by year-end.”
While the iPhone 5S is expected to retain virtually the same physical design as its predecessor, the handset could gain a fingerprint scanner and 12-megapixel rear-facing camera.
Additionally, the next-generation iPhone could have an improved processor, NFC and USB 3.0 support, longer battery life and more. Meanwhile, the low-budget iPhone could have a polycarbonate enclosure and myriad of color options.