Apple Inc.'s 5.5-inch iPhone 6 May Arrive Sooner Than Expected

Apple investors and customers may get their iPhone phablet sooner than expected.

Jun 25, 2014 at 8:00AM

Apple's (NASDAQ:AAPL) iPhone business is monstrous. At over half of Apple's revenue and an even larger portion of its operating profit, the device can make or break the entire company. This is why the iPhone 6 will be incredibly important to Apple's success. Fortunately, one strategic piece to the puzzle for Apple's next lineup of smartphones may have just been placed more favorably; the larger of the two devices could be launched earlier than expected.

Iphone

Rendering of rumored iPhone 6 lineup next to the iPhone 5s. Mockups by MacRumors, used with permission.

Earlier launch, limited supply?
While the Apple rumor mill seems to mostly be in consensus that the tech giant is working on 4.7-inch and 5.5-inch versions of the iPhone 6, there is less certainty about when the larger of the two iPhones will actually hit the shelves.

Mostly, however, sources predict the 5.5-inch iPhone 6 is going to be delayed until a few months after the planned fall launch for the 4.7-inch version. The rumor mill has often cited supply constraints, particularly restrictions on the phone's new sapphire crystal display.

But Bloomberg is now reporting that Apple may launch the two phones simultaneously this fall:

Apple is ramping up on two bigger devices, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the plans are private. One model will have a 4.7-inch display, compared to the 4-inch screen of the current iPhone 5s, that may be available to ship to retailers around September, said two of the people. A 5.5-inch version is also being prepared for manufacturing and may be available at the same time, the people said.

MacRumors' Husain Sumra, however, warned that the 5.5-inch version of the iPhone 6 could be in short supply when it is released.

Stock of the 5.5-inch iPhone 6 is likely to be lower than the 4.7-inch model, mostly due to the more complex manufacturing of the phone and the need for an increase in production efficiency for the device before the manufacturing volume for it can be increased.

Will the launch date make a difference for Apple investors?
For shortsighted investors, maybe. Year-over-year iPhone sales may see a slight boost via limited availability of the larger iPhone 6 a few months earlier than planned. But with so many factors influencing short-term volatility in share prices, there's no telling what the stock will do by the time investors are aware of sales.

While rumors like these offer a helpful way for long-term investors to stay tuned to Apple's business, there's no reason for investors to get too caught up in launch date and supply chain rumors. But we can take solace in the fact that Apple obviously wants to do everything in its power to ramp up production to meet demand. Still, a limited supply for the first few quarters of iPhone availability isn't abnormal for the company.

The key item for investors to watch will be the overall success of this important new lineup of iPhones. Will the larger displays and new form-factors continue to compel an influx of upgrades and swarms of new Apple users across the world?

Apple Customers Waiting In Line For Iphone

Apple customers waiting in line for iPhone 5 on launch day. Image source: Apple.

Last year, year-over-year iPhone sales growth in the company's fourth calendar quarter (the first full quarter of availability of its new iPhone lineup) lacked the blowout sales growth Apple investors are used to. iPhone unit sales for this important quarter only increased 6.7%. Can Apple renew double-digit year-over-year growth to the business with the iPhone 6?

The worst-case scenario for Apple investors is that they'll have wait until it reports the first calendar quarter results for iPhone sales -- if the larger version of the iPhone comes a quarter late -- to really gauge the health of Apple's most important business segment.

Meanwhile, however, we can at least rest easy in the fact that several studies and analyst predictions suggest Apple is in for substantial iPhone 6 demand.

The next big Apple device can change everything, and it's not the iPhone 6
Imagine the multi-billion dollar sales potential behind a product that can revolutionize the way the world shops and interacts with its favorite brands every day. Now picture one small, under-the radar company at the epicenter of this revolution that makes this all possible. And its stock price has nearly an unlimited runway ahead for early, in-the-know investors. To be one of them and hop aboard this stock before it takes off, just click here.  

Daniel Sparks owns shares of Apple. The Motley Fool recommends Apple. The Motley Fool owns shares of Apple. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

Money to your ears - A great FREE investing resource for you

The best way to get your regular dose of market and money insights is our suite of free podcasts ... what we like to think of as “binge-worthy finance.”

Feb 1, 2016 at 5:03PM

Whether we're in the midst of earnings season or riding out the market's lulls, you want to know the best strategies for your money.

And you'll want to go beyond the hype of screaming TV personalities, fear-mongering ads, and "analysis" from people who might have your email address ... but no track record of success.

In short, you want a voice of reason you can count on.

A 2015 Business Insider article titled, "11 websites to bookmark if you want to get rich," rated The Motley Fool as the #1 place online to get smarter about investing.

And one of the easiest, most enjoyable, most valuable ways to get your regular dose of market and money insights is our suite of free podcasts ... what we like to think of as "binge-worthy finance."

Whether you make it part of your daily commute or you save up and listen to a handful of episodes for your 50-mile bike rides or long soaks in a bubble bath (or both!), the podcasts make sense of your money.

And unlike so many who want to make the subjects of personal finance and investing complicated and scary, our podcasts are clear, insightful, and (yes, it's true) fun.

Our free suite of podcasts

Motley Fool Money features a team of our analysts discussing the week's top business and investing stories, interviews, and an inside look at the stocks on our radar. The show is also heard weekly on dozens of radio stations across the country.

The hosts of Motley Fool Answers challenge the conventional wisdom on life's biggest financial issues to reveal what you really need to know to make smart money moves.

David Gardner, co-founder of The Motley Fool, is among the most respected and trusted sources on investing. And he's the host of Rule Breaker Investing, in which he shares his insights into today's most innovative and disruptive companies ... and how to profit from them.

Market Foolery is our daily look at stocks in the news, as well as the top business and investing stories.

And Industry Focus offers a deeper dive into a specific industry and the stories making headlines. Healthcare, technology, energy, consumer goods, and other industries take turns in the spotlight.

They're all informative, entertaining, and eminently listenable. Rule Breaker Investing and Answers are timeless, so it's worth going back to and listening from the very start; the other three are focused more on today's events, so listen to the most recent first.

All are available for free at www.fool.com/podcasts.

If you're looking for a friendly voice ... with great advice on how to make the most of your money ... from a business with a lengthy track record of success ... in clear, compelling language ... I encourage you to give a listen to our free podcasts.

Head to www.fool.com/podcasts, give them a spin, and you can subscribe there (at iTunes, Stitcher, or our other partners) if you want to receive them regularly.

It's money to your ears.

 


Compare Brokers