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Suppliers ramping up Force Touch module shipments for 'iPhone 6s,' rumor claims

Apple touch panel suppliers are reportedly ramping up shipments of Force Touch modules in preparation for the launch of a next-generation iPhone, according to a new rumor.

Companies first began shipping the new Force Touch modules in June, and scaled up production in July, supply chain sources told DigiTimes. As many as 36 to 40 million next-gen iPhones could be built during the September quarter, followed by 50 million in the December quarter, the sources added.

One supplier, TPK, allegedly announced in recent times that it would be entering mass production of Force Touch parts in July, but without specifying the customer. Only Apple makes products branded with the Force Touch name, however.

It should be noted that DigiTimes and its supply chain sources have an unreliable track record in predicting Apple's future product plans. However, Apple is widely expected to feature Force Touch in this year's iPhone upgrade, and AppleInsider's own sources affirmed as much in February of this year.

Reports have pointed toward Apple shipping two new iPhones in the fall, commonly referred to as the iPhone 6s and 6s Plus. While the devices should be similar in design to current iPhoens, they're expected to get not just Force Touch but faster A9 processors, 2 gigabytes of RAM, and 12-megapixel rear cameras paired with 5-megapixel front units.

They may also get sturdier 7000-series aluminum and a rose gold color option. Those traits, like Force Touch, would be carry-overs from the Apple Watch lineup.