WSJ: Apple prepares record number of 80 million 4.7-inch and 5.5-inch iPhones for production

The Wall Street Journal reports that Apple has told its suppliers to prepare to build a record number of next-gen iPhones. According to the Journal, Apple is looking to produce 70-80 million units by December 30th. As reported earlier this month, both the 4.7-inch and the larger 5.5-inch models of the upcoming iPhone are expected to enter mass production in the coming weeks.

This is a big jump from the previous iPhone models. Last year the company only ordered 50-60 million of the iPhone 5s and 5c. Manufacturing parter Foxconn recently hired as many as 100,000 new workers to help meet the increased demand, and even ordered a custom line of robotic equipment to facilitate the production of iPhone 6.

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Apple seeds iOS 8 beta 4 to developers with redesigned Control Center, Health improvements, more

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Apple today released iOS 8 beta 4 to developers. It is now available via Software Update in Settings for those running earlier betas of iOS 8 on the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. The new update likely brings further design enhancements and bug fixes. iOS 8 comes out this fall and adds new features like health tracking, improved messaging, more efficient email management, and bolstered photo editing. We’ll be updating this post (below) as we discover new changes, and you can send us what you find to tips@9to5mac.com.

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Will Apple also update the next iPads with rounded edges? (Poll)

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One of our favorite designers of Apple concepts, Martin Hajek, has put together this visual showing how a new iPad mini design might compare with the existing one if it were based on the design of the iPhone 6.

The existing design, top, has the familiar flat front and tapered, chamfered edge. The bottom one, Hajek’s concept, has the rounded edge now familiar from countless iPhone 6 renders, mockups and purported leaked parts

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Apple will beat its own top-end guidance when it announces Q3 results tomorrow, say analysts

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Fortune ran its usual poll of more than two dozen analysts, with the consensus view echoing earlier predictions that Apple will beat its revenue guidance of $36-38B by reporting $38.4B for its fiscal Q3 (calendar Q2). Gross margin is also expected to exceed Apple’s guidance of 37-38 percent, at 38.1 percent. This follows forecasts that iPhone sales would climb 15 percent year-on-year, while iPad sales will be flat.

Business Insider reports that Wall Street is once again expecting significant growth from AAPL.

46 Apple analysts rate the stock a buy, 13 call it a hold, and only 4 thinks it’s a sell. Citigroup, which was bearish on the stock, changed its analyst coverage and rated the stock a new “buy.” JMP securities upgraded the stock to outperform Monday morning. Other analysts have raised their price target …

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EU accuses Apple of dragging its feet on protections for ‘misleading’ IAP-driven free apps

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The European Commission has complained that Apple is taking too long to implement protections for freemium games in the App Store, reports BBC News. The Commission has decreed that both Apple and Google, the two biggest app store vendors, must make the “true cost of apps” clear before purchase. However, officials are upset that Apple has not yet committed to any such measures.

“Regrettably, no concrete and immediate solutions have been made by Apple to date to address the concerns linked in particular to payment authorisation,” the Commission said in a statement.

“Apple has proposed to address those concerns. However, no firm commitment and no timing have been provided for the implementation of such possible future changes.

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4.7-inch iPhone production to start third week of July, 5.5-inch second week of August as Foxconn confirms hiring of 100K workers

 

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Apple is set to begin mass production of the next-generation iPhone next week, the Economic Daily reported today. According to the report, the smaller 4.7-inch model will enter production in the third week of July, while the larger 5.5-inch variant will enter production in the second week of August. The bigger of the two models is said to be facing production setbacks that could lead to a much later launch date than its smaller cousin.

iPhone manufacturer Foxconn added some credence to the timing of the production rumors by officially confirming plans originally reported earlier this month to hire 100,000 new workers to build the upcoming device. Sapphire crystal for the displays (which we’ve recently seen in multiple videos) has been in production at Apple’s Mesa, AZ plant for several months now in preparation for mass production.

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