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For a while now, it has been suggested that Apple will strengthen the front panel of the upcoming iPhone 6 with sapphire glass, but while there have been conflicting reports indicating that only some variants of the impending handset would indulge, one analyst has come through with something a little more clarifying. Apparently, every single model of the 5.5-inch iPhone 6L will be laden in the clearer, more robust sapphire glass material, while only a portion of the 4.7-inch inventory will follow suit.

In an effort to present the consumer market with a cheaper option to the flagship iPhone 5s, the Cupertino company also rolled out the iPhone 5c last September, but while it’s strongly suspected that the colorful device will meet its demise in a couple of weeks’ time, Apple’s desire to diversify its line-up has apparently not subsided.

iPhone-6-sapphire-front

In fact, analyst and GTAT investor Matt Margolis cites Foxconn sources in suggesting that while Apple will unleash two iPhone sizing options with the 4.7 and 5.5-inch models, the Cupertino company will divide the smaller variant into at least two different configurations. One will retail with sapphire glass, while the other will retain Corning’s Gorilla Glass, and although this isn’t likely to be the only difference between the two, it’s certainly an intriguing move.

It could well be that a base-level 4.7-inch iPhone 6 only includes certain hardware features, but until somebody in the know comes through with something meaningful, we can only speculate on what this may be. With so many new features set to roll out with the iPhone 6 including NFC, it may be that Apple holds back some key elements of the top-tier model in order to run the lower-end model at a cheaper price.

AppleHQ1

It seems implausible that the sapphire glass will be the only discernible difference between the two, but Margolis does also mention that he expects every 5.5-inch model to ship with sapphire glass screens “at this point.”

Margolis also notes that while the announcements will take place next month, it’s likely that the 4.7-inch iPhone will begin shipping before the end of September, with both the 5.5-inch sizing option and the elusive iWatch hitting retail in October.

(via: 9to5Mac)

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