Apple plans to ship 20 million ‘phablet’ iPhone 6 handsets this year

iPhone 6 production is ramping up

Apple kept its cards close to its chest about the forthcoming iPhone 6 at yesterday’s WWDC keynote (and why wouldn’t it?), but new information has arrived in the form of a report from China.

This information suggests that Apple has been able to solve the battery issues that reportedly plagued production of its expected 5.5-inch iPhone 6, and that the company is on course to ship 20 millions of these handsets in 2014 alone. The news states that Apple is partnering with the China-based Sunwoda Electronics to manufacture batteries for all of these devices — with each battery costing roughly $6.40. Apple’s regular battery supplier, Dynapack, will also help fill the order.

While both iPhone 6 variants are now expected to ship at the same time, it is likely that you’ll have a much easier time finding a 4.7-inch iPhone 6 than you will its 5.5-inch bigger brother. Apple is reportedly planning to manufacture 80 million iPhone 6 handsets in total this year — meaning that the larger phablet will be significantly outnumbered by the 4.7-inch model. This exclusivity (combined with the larger size of the device) likely suggests that it will also come with a higher price point.

Which iPhone 6 model (if any) are you planning on picking up come September?

  • Steven

    I was planning on upgrading to whatever larger size was offered, but if two sizes are available, I’ll definitely go with the larger. I was looking at the different sizes available (in Android) at Staples the other day, and the sweet spot for me was around 5.1″ or so. But I cal live with 5.5″.

    After yesterday’s impressive keynote and the upcoming releases, I’m really glad I purchased some Apple stock recently.

  • tornacious

    I will likely get the Samsung Galaxy Note 4 when it comes out. iPhones are really nice, but I value the openness of Android more than the protections of Apple’s walled garden. Still, I love my iPad Air….ah caught in between.

    • http://www.feastofbeast.com DJBabyBuster

      Jailbreaking gives you the best of both worlds :)

    • ronjon400

      being able to pick up where u left off going from one device to another is the best part.

      • mahadragon

        That guy is clueless. The walled garden is coming down. 3rd party keyboards are coming to the fray. Widgets and customizable notifications as well. iOS is becoming a lot more open and customizable, apps will be a lot more useful because they will be able to work inside other apps. I’m looking forward to taking calls on my 27″ iMac via my iPhone. It’s a great time to be in the Apple ecosystem.

        Google will have a hard time keeping up with iOS. Their ecosystem is so fractured.

  • Andy Shorrock

    At the moment sight unseen I’ll be going for the 5.5″ – if there IS a 5.5″

  • Adrayven

    5.5″ for me.. it’s mostly about battery life for me.. The larger screen iPhone will likely have longer battery life than the 4.7″ .. just basic physics. Thats why the Note 2/3 has such good life.. eventually the screen is overtaken by the size of the battery..

    Of course, Apple may surprise us on what gets the best battery life.. will find out this fall..

  • Nick

    Note to the author. The “plagued production” link you referenced dealt with in-cell display tech issues. That has nothing to do with the battery, as your article suggested. FYI.

  • Josh Sanfilippo

    I’m still using a 4S, and I love the size of it. I’m kind of upset that we are growing in screen size, but since I have a 2-year update available in September, I guess I’ll get the 4.7″ My hope is that it will be half the price of the 5.5″ so that I can get a 32GB 4.7″ for the price of a 16GB 5.5″

  • mike077

    5.5. And, a prediction is that this demand for this size — but maybe not the availability — will far outstrip the 4.7.

  • Gordon Bonenfant

    SO, then, the long, drawn out upgrade / form factor game for Apple smartphones is about to draw to a close, with the release this fall of the iPhone 6. Absolutely the larger 5.5 iPhone 6 is my interest. However, I will not be an early adopter. I will wait to be sure the first wave of 6th gen phones has none of the issues that plagued the 5S: such as the inclinometer problem, and I want to see if they have addressed their under powered smart phone battery issue. All the talk of how thin a in iPhone 6 will be… I could care less how thin it got, if it fails to come with a battery that will last the day, if not 3 days.

    I own a 64mb 4s (my 1st iPhone). I refused to play the marginal, annual upgrade game for products that seemed upgraded lightly just for the sake of an upgrade, weak battery life, &/ or cash grab for those at end of locked in contracts, looking for the latest & greatest subsidized iPhone.

    The 5.5 inch screen will do justice to mobile tv, make text much easier to read, and keyboard input function better for those of us with large hands. Making use of my carriers LTE network is the final reason I’ll give up my 4s this fall.

    Like desktop or laptops, processor speed has reached speeds that exceed virtually any average users needs. The Apple smart phone advantage is its ios.

    In what may amount to heresy on this blog… My iPhone will absolutely never be a stepping stone into the Apple lap top or mac platform. Two weeks ago my HP Envy laptop arrived. I’ll admit I was not a fan of windows 8 on my desktop, but I didn’t own a touch based windows devise either, which is where the tile based os shines.

    My 17″ HP Envy lap top features a touch screen. On other versions, HP offers a touchless screen that they call leap motion control, and it is remarkable. (a mini version of an xbox one gesture controller would be a good analogy) I chose a machine with 16GB DDR3 system memory, vs. the leap motion route. Apple not having a touch based os is a huge disadvantage, going forward.

    I have no doubt that one day soon, Apple will be forced to catch up to windows capabilities on lap tops and desktops.

    For now, in the smart phone category, the larger iPhone 6 will save, and grow, their iPhone business. The upcoming Phone 6 phablet will be the last of the significant product upgrades for Apple smartphones: at last, a mature business, with little growth and much weaker apodtion of new iPhone models, post iPhone 6.

    • sanity check

      Windows 8 is an abomination. And HP as a brand are renowned for churning out cheap garbage. Owned one of their laptops before which developed 10 major HW faults during it’s lifetime all of which I had to have repaired at my expense before throwing the piece of junk in the bin.

      Your iphone 6 would have been much happier co-existing with a Mac, as would you. Yosemite at WWDC anyone? Continuity across devices is the way forward. Sounds like what you need is a windows phone.

      • mahadragon

        Agree, that guy sounds like an MS fanboy. I’ll take a Macbook Pro with Retina screen over an HP Laptop 100% of the time.

    • mahadragon

      Exactly how many desktop users have purchased touch screens to go on their desktop? And of those users, how many of those people actually sit close enough to their monitors and touch the screen regularly to input commands?

      I have a 27″ iMac, there’s no way on god’s green earth I’m going to sit at the edge of my desk touching up that gorgeous screen.

  • Rob in Houston

    Did anyone else notice that the aspect ratio Apple used for their “virtual phone” during the keynote was wider than an iPhone 5S screen is?

About the author

Luke DormehlLuke Dormehl is a UK-based journalist and author, with a background working in documentary film for Channel 4 and the BBC. He is the author of The Formula: How Algorithms Solve All Our Problems, And Create More and The Apple Revolution, both published by Penguin/Random House. His tech writing has also appeared in Wired, Fast Company, Techmeme, and other publications. He'd like you a lot if you followed him on Twitter.

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