Apple Is Internally Testing A New Quad-Core iPhone With 720p, 16:9 Display [Rumor]

Apple Is Internally Testing A New Quad-Core iPhone With 720p, 16:9 Display [Rumor]

With every new iPhone, we know to expect a faster processor and faster GPU. However, a weird report coming out of Germany says that Apple isn’t just testing new CPUs and GPUs for the next generation of iPhone… they are also testing some truly bizarro resolutions that could indicate that Apple will radically redesign the iPhone in 2012 to be even higher resolution and with an entirely new aspect ratio.

German Mac blog Macerkopf is reporting (Google translation) that two sources independently tell them Apple is internally testing a number of configurations for new iOS devices internally, in both quad-core and dual-core CPU varieties.

What’s weirder, though, are the resolutions of the devices Apple is reportedly testing. One is the standard Retina Display, a 960 x 640 resolution affair. But here’s where it gets interesting: Macerkopf says that Apple is also testing a 1280 x 720 (or 720p) device (that display would be similar to the LG Nitro HD‘s display), as well as an utterly bizarre 1440 x 800 device.

Why are these resolutions so notable? Well, they are totally different aspect ratios than the current iPhone, which has a 3:2 aspect ratio. The 720p display has an aspect ratio of 16:9, but the 1440 x 800 device is just odd. In fact, it’s so odd, that it makes me wonder if it’s not just a typo: maybe they meant 1440 x 900, which is, again, an HD standard 16:9 widescreen resolution. Makes a lot more sense.

Right now, there’s only a single report from a site with a spotty track record on making Apple predictions, so take this all with a grain of salt, especially given how loathe Apple is to fragment iOS between different aspect ratios (they’ve only done it once, with the iPad). But if — big if! — Macerkopf is right, we could see a new iPhone next year boasting a higher density display and a totally new aspect ratio in 2012. Between that, the iPad 3 and the possibility of a proper iTV, 2012 is looking like it might be a hell of a year.

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  • Timothy Williamson

    It’s seems reasonable to me that Apple would have multiple prototypes to test different display sizes/resolutions/manufacturers. But it doesn’t mean they are (or aren’t) going to change the screen size on the iPhone 5.

  • Miguel Ângelo Costa

     1440 x 900 is 16:10, not 16:9. 

  • sfbubu

    And 1440 X 960 with 1.5 factor from 960 X 640 ? 

  • Shameer Mulji

    This resolution makes sense.  Assuming Apple increases screen size, I hope they go with at least the resolution you stated.

  • DarekSlaby

    Why does the iPhone need a resolution bump if it already has the highest pixel density that a human eye can see? 

  • Appleinfoexpert

    I think Apple has the technology to go 1080p

  • David Shanahan

    Sounds like Apple misinformation to me. Probably trying to track down some leakers.

    I’m sure if it was technically and financially possible to make a 2X iPhone screen with a 1920 X 1280 3.5-4″ screen they’d do it in a heartbeat. It would retain the 3:2 aspect ratio and would not need any app updates. But that seems very unlikely for 2012 (or 2013) and anything else would require a lot of work for all the app developers to support a new resolution and aspect ratio.

  • SerranoSlim

    The iPhone 4s can already do 720p video out, correct? Perhaps Apple is evaluating what native 720p would look and act like in an iPhone display. From the Jobs biography, Apple determines the path forward for products based on hands-on prototypes. They’d need to test not only the color fidelity and responsiveness, but also the power consumption under different scenarios. And the size of the panel – there would have to be a compelling argument to add a new device footprint as well as a new app layout.

  • Freek Monsuur

    This is all about the iTV, not the iPhone.

    There are no big reasons to change the iPhone screen, while there are dozens to keep it.

    16:9 is television.

  • minimalist1969

    I used to think it was inevitable for Apple to release multiple versions of the iPhone (iPhone Nano, etc) just as they eventually did with iPods.   But I’ve slowly realizing that they will not cover all their bases with different designs, merely different prices.  They already have iPhones for free, 100, 200, 300, and 400 dollars.   The iPad starts at 500 and goes up to 830.  The iPod touch goes is the small iPad and fulfills the under 500 category.

    Apple may release a slightly larger phone (although I give this a less than 50% chance of actually happening given Apple’s anal retentiveness about consistency across product lines) but they won’t screw with the aspect ratio or the actual resolution standard they have established for the iPhone.  Same with the iPad, they may double the pixels for crisper text and icons but the aspect ratio will remain the same as it is now.

  • jeremyfranklin

    Do you not give credit for pictures you use on the blog?  I believe it is from http://prometheus.med.utah.edu…  Perhaps, you should give him credit. 

  • Demonstr8r

    I’ll eat my hat if Apple releases a TV set in 2012. Margins are razor thin on TV sets. Makes more sense to update the Apple TV with full HD 1080p and major content distribution rights. iTV is analogous to iBooks, but the so called technology pundits and business analysts are jumping to conclusions that it is an HDTV set.

  • Guest

    if the next gen A6 ARM processors are quad core and the iPad and iPhone were quad core and apple still has COMPUTERS with dual core processors that would be pretty odd:/ but awesome!:D

  • Unis Zuurmond

    Actually, the screen resolution CAN change without affecting apps, IF the full length is not used. That would leave space for either advertising or notifications, with the benefit of watching 16:9 movies. So anything is possible.

  • John Neumann

    Those are some insane display resolutions. I just wish they would hurry up and release the iCorneal overlays and eNeural implants and be done with it! The hardware cost on stuff like that would skew down to almost $0 so Apple would have to make money opening implant kiosks in the malls and surgically attaching this stuff while you wait for your Cinnabon order.  

    Ultraviolet keyboard tattoos on your forearm? Scroll wheels under the pads of your fingers?

    Yes, I’m from the future and I’m spilling Apple’s future playbook. Come and catch me goon sqaaaaaaaaaaaaaa . . . . . . .         < transmission interrupted >

  • wizard32843

    16:9 iPhone? 
    Steve Jobs would come out of his grave and fire the person whoever made this call himself.By the way 1440X900 is 16:10 not 16:9.

  • JonathanRWegner

    This is just plain stupid. Why the heck would Apple create a denser screen resolution? 300 dpi/ppi is the limit that our human eyes stop discerning individual dots/pixels at normal use distances. Why increase it? To pack more of the web into your screen? If it were pixel for pixel you’d need a lupe to see it.
    I’m with the guys saying this is for new iTV.

  • Luckiest_Girl_1990

    @sfbubu:disqus …..I ??n`t b?l?iv?…?y fri?nd`s sist?r m???s 78/hr ?n th? int?rn?t. Sh? h?s b??n un?m?l???d f?r 11 m?nths but l?st m?nth h?r inc?m? w?s 7985$ ?ust w?r?ing ?n th? ?? f?r ? f?w h?urs. Read on this w?bsit?…….http://alturl.com/2vqdc

  • Luckiest_Girl_1990

    …..I ??n`t b?l?iv?…?y fri?nd`s sist?r m???s 78/hr ?n th? int?rn?t.  Sh? h?s b??n un?m?l???d f?r 11 m?nths but l?st m?nth h?r inc?m? w?s  7985$ ?ust w?r?ing ?n th? ?? f?r ? f?w h?urs.  Read on this w?bsit?…….http://alturl.com/ocohb

  • Tomas Baran

    actuall it makes sense – apple needs to enlarge the display of the iPhone, therefore if they want to keep the dpi at least above 300, they need to increase the pixels, too.

  • hugh massengill

    I think you will be eating your hat. 
    The future will only have space for three types of screens, tv/computer, mobile, workstation. Apple has to enter the tv world sooner or later, incorporate the iMac innards, hook up with one cable internet, have a magic way to interface…
    Or be left behind.
    Being left behind isn’t Apple’s way.
    We will see by next Oct.
    Hugh

About the author

John BrownleeJohn Brownlee is a Contributing Editor. He has also written for Wired, Playboy, Boing Boing, Popular Mechanics, VentureBeat, and Gizmodo. He lives in Boston with his girlfriend and two parakeets. You can follow him here on Twitter.

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