Reports of an iPhone redesign continue to roll in. On Wednesday we received word that sources had confirmed to the Wall Street Journal that the iPhone will be getting a 4-inch display, to be manufactured by LG, Sharp, and Japan Display. The next day Reuters, not to be outdone, confirmed the rumors as well.
Today, Bloomberg is adding its own confirmation of the redesign rumors – including the 4-inch display. According to “three people with knowledge of the plans,” the iPhone is getting an “overhaul,” including the 4-inch display. These sources also add something new: it seems that the next iPhone was one of the last projects on which Steve Jobs worked before he died last October. According to the sources, Jobs “worked closely” on the redesign, and “played a key role in developing the phone.”
Bloomberg’s sources also seem to confirm a rumor that we brought you way back in November, that the redesigned iPhone existed (at least in prototype form) before the iPhone 4S launched. The rumor at the time was that this redesigned phone was intended to launch instead of the iPhone 4S, but that Jobs scrapped the plans at the last minute. While Bloomberg’s sources do not confirm that last bit, they do say that Jobs was working on the new iPhone well before the old iPhone launched.
Now, those of you keeping track may have noticed something: in the past three days we have seen separate stories by three reputable news agencies all citing inside sources and confirming the same rumor. While it is possible that the Wall Street Journal, Reuters, and Bloomberg are all getting bad information and the next iPhone won’t be getting a bigger display, that’s unlikely. In fact, this smells an awful lot like a calculated leak. That is, Apple wants the press to know that the iPhone is getting redesigned with a bigger display, but can’t actually announce anything until the actual unveiling (which is likely still almost 5 months away).
That being the case, I think we can probably start treating the 4-inch display rumor as a given. While anything could still happen – after all, nothing is official until Tim Cook gets up on stage and says it is – it looks like Apple really is finally ditching the good old 3.5-inch display in favor of a bigger phone. What else might be coming along with the redesign is still very much in the air, though, and for that we’ll likely have to wait until October.