3 Signs Apple, Inc. Expects the iPhone 6 to Be a Record Breaker

Based on some recent reports, Apple appears to be prepping for record iPhone sales.

Jul 8, 2014 at 12:00PM

Apple's (NASDAQ:AAPL) highly anticipated iPhone 6 lineup is rumored to consist of two larger phones, a 4.7-inch version and a phablet-like 5.5-inch version. As Apple's largest business segment, accounting for 57% of the tech giant's revenue in its most recent quarter, investors are hoping the new form factor could reinvigorate iPhone sales growth. Investors may get their wish. Apple appears to have considerable confidence in its next-generation smartphone. Here are three reasons why:

1. A hiring spree
Last month, a report from Taiwan's Economic Daily News (via Reuters) said that Apple's largest iPhone manufacturer, Foxconn, is boosting its workforce by 10%, or 100,000 workers, compared to the human resources needed for iPhone 5 and 5s production.

After taking into account the hiring at Apple supplier Pegatron, this hiring spree is so significant that it will play a role in driving greater job creation in the mainland than has been seen in recent memory, Economic Daily said. The Chinese news site said Pegatron is boosting its workforce by 30% for iPhone 6 production.


4.7-inch and 5.5-inch iPhone 6 mockups pictured with the 4-inch iPhone 5s. Source: 9to5Mac, used with permission.

2. 10,000 robots
But Apple and Foxconn's investment in iPhone 6 production goes beyond human resources. Foxconn CEO Terry Gou recently announced that it will soon be putting 10,000 robots to work in its factories, according to IT Home (via MacRumors). Apple, of course, will be the first to use the robots, IT Home says.

These robots, dubbed "Foxbots," can each assemble about 30,000 devices per year, Gou says. At 10,000 robots, that's 300 million devices per year. For perspective, Apple sold about 160 million iPhones in the trailing 12 months. Of course, there is a possibility the robots may also be used for tablet production.

While the recent hire of 100,000 employees suggests Foxconn may not be deploying these robots soon enough to handle initial supply of the iPhone 6 lineup, it is still another sign Apple may be prepping for record iPhone supply.

3. Enormous sapphire display production capacity
Apple's upcoming line of iPhones is rumored to use sapphire crystal for the displays. While some rumors have suggested the smaller 4.7-inch iPhone 6 may not adopt the sapphire crystal yet, there's a consensus in the Apple rumor mill that, at least, the larger iPhone 6 will use the new technology.


Apple already uses sapphire glass to protect the camera in its iPhones and on the home button of the iPhone 5s for Touch ID.

PTT Research analyst Matt Margolis, who has followed Apple's investment in sapphire crystal closely, believes that Apple's sapphire crystal supplier could be readying for production as high as 200 million smartphone displays per year.

Considering these three reports, Apple appears to be preparing for a record year for its largest business segment. Analysts, too, are growing bullish on Apple's upcoming iPhone line. Could Apple's important iPhone segment soon return to 20% plus year-over-year growth, thanks to the larger iPhone 6 line?

The stock that may win big thanks to Apple's alleged iWatch
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Daniel Sparks owns shares of Apple. The Motley Fool recommends and 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.

4 in 5 Americans Are Ignoring Buffett's Warning

Don't be one of them.

Jun 12, 2015 at 5:01PM

Admitting fear is difficult.

So you can imagine how shocked I was to find out Warren Buffett recently told a select number of investors about the cutting-edge technology that's keeping him awake at night.

This past May, The Motley Fool sent 8 of its best stock analysts to Omaha, Nebraska to attend the Berkshire Hathaway annual shareholder meeting. CEO Warren Buffett and Vice Chairman Charlie Munger fielded questions for nearly 6 hours.
The catch was: Attendees weren't allowed to record any of it. No audio. No video. 

Our team of analysts wrote down every single word Buffett and Munger uttered. Over 16,000 words. But only two words stood out to me as I read the detailed transcript of the event: "Real threat."

That's how Buffett responded when asked about this emerging market that is already expected to be worth more than $2 trillion in the U.S. alone. Google has already put some of its best engineers behind the technology powering this trend. 

The amazing thing is, while Buffett may be nervous, the rest of us can invest in this new industry BEFORE the old money realizes what hit them.

KPMG advises we're "on the cusp of revolutionary change" coming much "sooner than you think."

Even one legendary MIT professor had to recant his position that the technology was "beyond the capability of computer science." (He recently confessed to The Wall Street Journal that he's now a believer and amazed "how quickly this technology caught on.")

Yet according to one J.D. Power and Associates survey, only 1 in 5 Americans are even interested in this technology, much less ready to invest in it. Needless to say, you haven't missed your window of opportunity. 

Think about how many amazing technologies you've watched soar to new heights while you kick yourself thinking, "I knew about that technology before everyone was talking about it, but I just sat on my hands." 

Don't let that happen again. This time, it should be your family telling you, "I can't believe you knew about and invested in that technology so early on."

That's why I hope you take just a few minutes to access the exclusive research our team of analysts has put together on this industry and the one stock positioned to capitalize on this major shift.

Click here to learn about this incredible technology before Buffett stops being scared and starts buying!

David Hanson owns shares of Berkshire Hathaway and American Express. The Motley Fool recommends and owns shares of Berkshire Hathaway, Google, and Coca-Cola.We Fools don't 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.

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