iPhone 8’s 3D Touch Tech Reportedly Costs 150% More Than iPhone 7s

Apple is facing higher-than-expected component costs for this year’s iPhone 8, with 3D Touch panels expected to run as much as one-and-a-half times the price of equivalent parts developed for the LCD-equipped iPhone 7s and iPhone 7s Plus, according to a supply-chain report published Friday by the Economic Daily News (via DigiTimes).

TPK, Apple’s primary 3D Touch manufacturing partner, typically charges the tech-giant between $ 7 and $ 9 for every 3D Touch panel installed on current iPhone devices. According to the EDN report, however, that price point could ultimately balloon to between $ 18 and $ 22 per panel for the upcoming iPhone 8 — which could also be called the iPhone Edition or iPhone X.

Why the Price Hike?

The report cites the fact that OLED displays undergo a more complicated manufacturing process than their LCD counterparts, which is primarily due to OLED displays requiring a separate layer of protective glass bonding on both the front and back of the display panel, even before 3D Touch sensors can be applied.

“For 3D Touch solution used in existing iPhone series, TPK and fellow maker General Interface Solution (GIS) quote US$ 7-9 per smartphone” the report reads, while explaining that “The solution directly bonds 3D Touch sensors on LTPS TFT-LCD display panels of the iPhone, but 3D Touch solution for OLED panels entails bonding of a glass cover on the front and back side of an OLED panel each to reinforce the fragile OLED panel.”

The DigiTimes report claims that the actual costs of processing OLED-compatible 3D Touch modules are only 50% higher than their LCD counterparts; however TPK appears to be leveraging its position as the global leader, who offers the only tested and certified 3D Touch technology compatible with OLED displays, as a way of bargaining with Apple for higher prices.

Does Higher Component Costs Mean Higher Selling Prices?

Goldman Sachs analyst, Simona Jankowski, recently went on record suggesting that Apple’s iPhone 8 flagship could cost as much as $ 1,099 for a top-of-the-line variant boasting 256 GB of onboard storage, which would make Apple’s 10th anniversary flagship its most expensive iPhone ever offered. While increases in a wide range of costs — including 3D Touch panels, OLED displays, and 3D camera sensors — are sure to drive up the flagship’s overall selling price, one also needs to consider the sheer amount of next-generation technologies expected to make their way into the iPhone 8, which include wireless charging, advanced 3D camera tech, and more — all of which only further substantiate the higher cost when it’s all added up.

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Apple Strives to Lure Android Users to iPhone with New Ads and Dedicated Site

In an overt bid to lure Android users over to the iOS ecosystem, Apple has overhauled its webpage extolling the benefits of the iPhone over other smartphones. The iPhone maker launched this salvo against rival Google on Monday along with a series of 16-second video ads on its YouTube channel in order to highlight the iPhone’s advantages and how simple it is to switch over from Android.

The sleek and no-frills page is essentially a vertically-scrollable FAQ guide that relies less on text and more on graphics and clever animations to convey its message. It begins with the logline, “Life is Easier on iPhone”, and ends with iPhone price/model comparisons, as well as an offer to earn up to $ 260 in credit when you trade in an eligible smartphone.

Like the previous page, the new ‘Switch from Android to iPhone’ page promises that the transition to iOS will be an easy one thanks to the ‘Move to iOS’ app. The app, which is available on the Google Play Store, is dedicated to transferring contacts, mail accounts, messages, photos, videos and the like from Android. Android has a similar ‘Switch’ guide, by the way, detailing how to transfer your data from iOS in “3 easy steps”.

But while Apple’s old site focused more on the logistics of switching over to iOS from Android, the revamped webpage spends more time selling the iPhone, mentioning features like its camera, advanced chipset, and Messages app. It also touts Apple’s commitment to privacy and the environment for good measure.

Apple has long been focused on convincing Android users to transition over to the iPhone, and it makes mention of the number of “switchers” in nearly every earnings call, suggesting that it’s a metric that the iPhone maker is heavily invested in. During the company’s latest March earnings call, Apple CEO Tim Cook boasted: “We saw the largest absolute number of switchers outside of greater China that we’ve ever seen in the same period.”

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Top 5 Most Unloved Apple Devices

For as many Apple products that have been well-received and loved by the masses, Apple has also created some questionable pieces of technology — gadgets so wildly-unpopular and bizarre in nature, their time in the limelight was not only short-lived, but their legacy was forever etched in stone as a flub. Here are the top five most unpopular Apple products.

5. Apple’s Original USB Mouse (1998)

Apple’s original USB-connected mouse (affectionately known as “the hockey puck”) was, and probably always will be, the quirkiest pointing device the world has ever seen. Apple released this mouse as a bundled accessory with the original, Jony Ive-designed iMac G3 that was unveiled at Macworld 1998. Most early iMac adopters, though, were graphic designers and creative professionals — and they for the most part loathed this mouse for a very good reason: its perfectly circular shape rendered it impossibly difficult to grasp and maneuver.

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Leaked Molds Provide iPhone 8, 7s, and 7s Plus Size Comparison

Images of what appear to be external housing molds surfaced over the weekend, allegedly showing us for the very first time a relative size comparison between Apple’s upcoming iPhone 7s, iPhone 7s Plus, and the highly-anticipated iPhone 8. The images shown below, which supposedly leaked from Apple’s supply chain, were published to Twitter this morning by Benjamin Geskin — the same concept artist who previously shared a myriad of leaked images, schematics, and information about Apple’s upcoming iPhone 8 — which could also be re-branded the iPhone Edition — with iDrop News.

Are These Molds The Real Deal?

Whether the molds embody actual iPhone shells or whether they’re merely being used in the production of 3rd-party cases remains unclear at this time. However they do, either way, appear to align just beautifully with a number of previous rumors about the relative size of Apple’s 2017 iPhone lineup. Back in February of this year, famed KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo went on record suggesting that the iPhone 8 — despite its larger, 5.8-inch OLED display — would fit within a chassis not much larger than Apple’s standard, 4.7-inch iPhone 7.

This feat could be achieved due to the use of a nearly edge-to-edge OLED display— meaning that the front of the iPhone Edition would be almost entirely amassed by touchscreen, and feature minimal bezels on either edge.

What Else Do These Molds Reveal?

While we can’t guarantee their authenticity, the leaked molds would lend a ton of credence to previous rumors about the $ 1,099 iPhone’s dimensions, design, and features. For example, iDrop News was the first to reveal that the iPhone Edition would feature a vertically oriented, dual-lens camera system around back, which we can see clearly in the images of the molds. As unnecessary and unconventional as the design may seem, the vertical camera system will actually benefit the iPhone’s photography prowess, particularly when the device is used in landscape mode.

Additionally, reports have conflicted about the nature and positioning of Apple’s Touch ID sensor on the iPhone Edition, with some claiming that Touch ID will be embedded underneath the device’s OLED display glass, and others suggesting that Touch ID will move to the rear of the device similar to Samsung’s latest Galaxy S8 flagships. However both of those scenarios have since been supported and debunked, respectively, with some analysts saying that Apple was unable to incorporate an under-the-glass Touch ID solution due to low-production yields. If indeed they are the real deal, however, these case molds would appear to suggest that Touch ID will be integrated into the front of the iPhone Edition, which is likely to be unveiled alongside the iPhone 7s and iPhone 7s Plus this September.

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Nike Flaunts New “Day to Night” Apple Watch Bands, Matching Sneakers

Nike on Monday announced a new collection of Apple Watch Nike+ sport bands, which are color-coordinated to match perfectly with the company’s upcoming new line of Air VaporMax Flyknit “Day to Night” sneakers.

“Inspired by a shade of the sky, from dawn to dusk,” Nike’s upcoming sneakers and color-coordinated Apple Watch Nike+ sport bands will be the sports and fitness-giant’s first offering that allows customers to match up their Watch bands with a pair of ultra-premium sneakers.

Nike Flaunts New "Day to Night" Apple Watch Bands, Matching Sneakers

The bands will reportedly be crafted of the same, flexible material used to construct other Apple Watch Nike+ bands, and will likewise boast an array of Swiss cheese-inspired perforations in the band to help with sweat management and effective ventilation. The color options will include varying shades of deep blue, cotton-candy pink, and fuchsia — a dazzling array of colors that are oftentimes constituent of an early morning sunrise and late evening sunset.

Apple and Nike have a rich history of coming together and collaborating on various products. The original Apple Watch Nike+ Edition, for example, which was introduced as a premium, fitness-centric variant of the Apple Watch Series 2, was unveiled last year at Apple’s iPhone 7 launch event. Even more recently, Nike began selling a super-slick, limited-edition Apple Watch Nike+ from NikeLab, boasting a unique cream color scheme, which is currently available from the shoe-maker’s website.

When Will Nike’s New Bands Be Available?

Starting on June 1st, 2017, customers will be able to purchase Nike’s colorful new Apple Watch sport bands for $ 49 apiece, either directly from Nike’s website, or at select Nike retail stores around the globe. Likewise, the company said these bands will be available through Apple retail store locations, various Apple authorized retailers, and Apple.com beginning in “early June.”

If you’re looking to pick up a pair of the premium Air VaporMax sneakers to match, Nike claims that those, too, will be available beginning on June 1st for $ 190.

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