Apple Inc. (AAPL) reportedly has enough sapphire glass for new iPhone and wearable device
Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) reportedly has enough sapphire glass for both the iPhone 6 and the iWatch in 2014, according to the latest supply chain check at company’s sapphire glass manufacturing partner GT Advanced by analyst Matt Margolis.
“As a result of my most recent supply chain check I believe that the Mesa sapphire operations will have ample supply to cover the iWatch, the 4.7″ iPhone and the 5.5″ iPhone with full sapphire cover glass in 2014. Additionally, the maximum sapphire screen capacity of the Mesa facility is likely to exceed 200m annual units,” said Margolis.
Margolis reported that GT Advanced has installed over 2,500 furnaces and is expected to work with sapphire boules that weigh between 200 and 235 kg. The plant is waiting for its final prepayment from Apple to finish construction and secure equipment, which will likely be received by the end of this month.
This February, Margolis estimated that Apple would prepare for mass production of devices with sapphire displays with equipment in the factory leading to a yield of anywhere from 100 to 200 million 5-inch sapphire displays. At a yield of over 200 million sapphire displays as indicated by this report, it means that Apple could produce more than enough sapphire displays for multiple-sized iPhone 6 devices and the rumored ‘iWatch.’
There were previous reports that indicated that sapphire display supply constraints may force Apple to reserve sapphire material for its larger iPhone models. Reports also indicated that initial sapphire production would target the iWatch instead of the iPhone 6.
The 4.7-inch iPhone 6 is expected to be released later this year. And the 5.5-inch iPhone 6 will likely launch near the end of 2014. The iWatch is expected to launch at an October event.