A report from the usually-reliable KGI has repeated many of the details from our exclusives on the iPhone 6S, but additionally offered support for an earlier rumor that the front camera will be upgraded to 5MP. Surprisingly, it also suggests that the rear camera lens may not be sapphire, as it has apparently failed drop tests.
Aside from upgrading rear camera module to 12MP, Apple will upgrade front camera module to 5MP […] The new iPhone may not be equipped with sapphire cover lens, as it still has quality issues on the drop test.
Although sapphire is much more scratch-resistant than Gorilla Glass, it is more brittle, and thus at greater risk of shattering when dropped.
The company also repeated its concerns that limited appeal of the new features, together with external economic factors, is likely to result in flat or negative sales growth …
If Force Touch fails to create attractive selling points, together with slowing consumption in China and mobile operators cutting subsidies for high-end smartphones, we expect shipments of new iPhone in 2015F to be flattish from or slightly lower than the combined 73mn units sold of iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus last year.
KGI’s original concern about the potential limited appeal of Force Touch was voiced a day after my opinion piece.
We previously saw evidence for an uprated front camera in photos of the front glass, showing a larger lens aperture (below). Other specs listed by KGI simply repeat what we’ve already reported: storage capacity of 16/64/128GB; 12MP rear camera; Force Touch; rose gold casing. The new iPhone will be unveiled by Apple on 9th September.
KGI’s pessimism on sales potential contrasted with data from Kantar, which suggested “ample opportunity for iPhone upgrades” this year and next.