Plausibility of iPhone 5 feature switch 50:50

Apple’s iPhone 5 is still the smartphone on many people’s lips and it’s fair to say that although some other great handsets are on the way the next iPhone will always be huge news. Today we wanted to give you some news about the plausibility of an iPhone 5 feature switch that has been reported, as we reckon the chances are around 50:50 at this time.

In our recent iPhone 5 comprehensive roundup we told of many of the expectations for the next iPhone, possible specs and features, and insights. Although we have reported on rumors of a larger display for the iPhone 5, until now we hadn’t thought of the possibility of Apple changing its hugely popular Retina Display, as on the current iPhone. Indeed, the Retina Display on the iPhone earned such high praise that many desired it for the iPad 3 (now named the new iPad) and lo and behold Apple delivered the goods.

However recent reports are discussing the possibility of Apple changing the Retina Display for the iPhone 5 to an OLED display, the kind of display much favored on Androids, as on the hugely successful Samsung Galaxy S2. Only the other day we reported on reinforcement of rumors that the Galaxy S3 is likely to have the most sensational screen yet, a 4,65-inch Super AMOLED Plus display but will Apple really step away from its famed Retina Display? A report on IBTimes, sourced from the Korea Times says that Apple is showing interest in OLED technology and could switch from LCD to an OLED screen for the next iPhone and also the next iPad.

If this happens it seems that the next iDevice could have the most brilliant display yet. The report tells how Samsung recently established Samsung Display, a spin-off that will focus on moving away from LCD to concentrate on OLED displays. Anonymous Samsung executives apparently told how because of the increased volumes of production this will enable, there is now a greater possibility that OLED displays will be used in iPads and iPhones. OLED displays are being increasingly employed and allow for stronger depth of color and enhanced images, even in ultraslim devices, so in some ways it would make sense for Apple to start utilizing this technology.

However, others might point to the continued acrimony between the two companies as a reason why Apple is not likely to jump on the OLED bandwagon just yet. As IBTimes points out though even though there’s no love lost between Apple and Samsung, Apple still spent $7.8 billion on its rival’s components last year and it is expected to spend around $11 billion with Samsung this year. Although we have no way of knowing, it’s entirely possible that the increase could be down to pricier display components (read OLED).

It’s certainly interesting that Apple has no official presence at CES any longer but at CES 2012, there were around 250 furtive Apple employees keeping an eye on all the latest developments. These Apple workers even included the head of iOS product marketing Greg Joswiak, so Apple obviously isn’t averse to learning something from other manufacturers. There also seems no doubt that if Apple and Samsung put their heads together on a new iPhone display that might even integrate OLED technology and the Retina Display, it could be a display to blow all others out of the water and keep Apple at the forefront of cutting-edge technology.

Although it all seems to make good sense that Apple could switch to an OLED display for the iPhone 5 then, we still wonder about the possibility of that within the expected release timeframe. Although no date has yet been set for an iPhone 5 release it’s widely believed that it will either be in June at WWDC or in the fall. If we had to pick which we think will be most likely we’d go with a fall launch at the moment, a year after the iPhone 4S release and just in time for the lucrative Christmas season.

We would imagine that with either of those release dates it seems pretty late in the day for Apple to be thinking about switching the display, considering how far in advance devices are planned and prepared for production. However we could certainly be wrong on this and it’s also possible that talks are further along than anybody has realized so as we stated at the beginning of this article we’re pretty divided on whether this will come to the next iPhone. It certainly looks possible for a future iPhone further down the line though.

We’d like to hear your thoughts on this. Do you think that Apple could benefit from using Samsung OLED technology on the iPhone? If so, do you imagine it will be ready for the iPhone 5? Maybe you’re quite happy with the current Apple Retina Display and would rather Apple left it well alone? We welcome your comments so let us know what you think.


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