Yesterday, we got a glimpse at a leaked front-casing for what we believe to be the iPhone 5, showing a centered FaceTime camera hole. Today, however, we have but the WSJ’s word for it that Apple is working with supply line manufacturers to implement a thinner, more beautiful display into the next-gen handset.
According to the report, LCD makers such as Sharp and Japan Display (which comprises Toshiba, Hitachi, and Sony as well as LG Display) are mass producing panels that use something called “in-cell technology”, which should make the display itself thinner.
Currently, the iPhone’s display (and most other LCD capacitive displays) require a first layer to display imagery and a second, very thin layer to house the touch sensors. Resistive screens leave a little extra room between the display panel and the touch panel because touch is measured by the pressure applied from the first panel to the second. Capacitive screens require less space between panels since touch is measured through the electric current sent from your body to the display upon touch.
Even still, removing one of the panels (which are around half a millimeter thick) will still offer a little extra room in the body of the phone.
If true, this means that the iPhone itself will be thinner than usual, or that Apple is jamming a few extra goodies in there. I, for one, would love to see a slightly larger battery in Apple’s handset. Considering the fact that Siri just got smarter and Maps flew into the third dimension with iOS 6, it’s highly likely that we’ll need it.