Analyst Ming Chi-Kuo of KGI Securities has released a timeline according to which Apple will deploy most of its 2014 products in the third quarter, following WWDC14. Among those will be two iWatch models, one of which will cost “several thousand US dollars,” according to the analyst.
The Cupertino company will reportedly position the iWatch as a fashion device, which may just explain why Angela Ahrendts accepted to be the new head of Retail at Apple (you heard it here first). Ahrendts comes from fashion house Burberry, and she will reportedly begin work for the new employer as early as this month.
To be noted that Kuo doesn’t have inside information about the specs and the established price point for the iWatch, but he does have his ways around Apple’s component suppliers, so he might be onto something here.
According to his research note, “Fashion is the name of the game; most expensive [iWatch] model likely priced at several thousand US dollars. Referring to the rules of the fashion market, we predict the iWatch casing and band will come in various materials. The most expensive model of the iWatch line will carry a price tag of several thousand US dollars. Assuming the iWatch proves to be a success, we expect Apple’s key competitors in 5-10 years will be the current fashion brands, not the existing tech companies.”
Right, so that’s the iWatch. The iPhone 6, also launching around the third quarter, will sport a redesigned chassis and will come with a bigger screen. Two models are predicted to launch, the first of which will be the smaller, 4.7-inch version.
Kuo outlines that the power button will be relocated for the first time in the iPhone’s seven-year existence: “Our understanding is that iPhone 6’s power button might be moved from the top to the side. We think this change is meant to facilitate one-hand operation and might indicate new applications that require more frequent use of the power button.”
The larger, 5.5-inch model will have a higher-resolution display, but will retain the proportions in terms of length and width, in order to help developers port their apps easily and without the hassle of having to re-scale graphics.
“Specifications common to both models will include A8 processor, LPDDR3 1GB, LTPS panel, in-cell touch, Touch ID (fingerprint identification), 10-20% narrower bezel, 6.5-7.0mm thickness, NFC chip with security element and metal casing,” writes Kuo.
Apple will continue to retain the 8MP camera with f2.2 aperture but will increase exposure time. Finally, KGI firmly holds that a 12.9-inch iPad is in the works, but will not launch this year.