Apple to boost 'iPhone 13' production to 90M units in 2021

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Ahead of Apple's expected launch of a next-generation iPhone this fall, a report on Tuesday claims the company is anticipating heavy demand for the new handset line and has asked manufacturers to ready as many as 90 million for 2021.

Citing sources familiar with Apple's plans, Bloomberg on Tuesday reports Apple's orders suggest the company is expecting increased demand as the world emerges from COVID-19 restrictions.

According to market estimates, Apple ships about 75 million iPhones between launch and the end of the year. If the report is accurate, the increase in orders would account for a 20% uptick year-over-year.

Beyond shipment volumes, the report rehashes a number of "iPhone 13" hardware rumors that were aired months ago by analyst Ming-Chi Kuo and other industry insiders.

According to the report, this year's iPhone lineup — code-named D16, D17, D63, and D64 — will borrow a design introduced with iPhone 12 in 2020, albeit with a few new features. Apple is reportedly planning to introduce its first low-temperature polycrystalline oxide (LTPO) iPhone display on at least one model, enabling variable refresh rates that span the spectrum. High-efficiency indium gallium zinc oxide (IGZO) technology is expected to accompany LTPO hardware.

Apple currently uses an LTPO solution in Apple Watch to facilitate the wearable's always-on screen. Previous rumblings pegged Apple to leverage LTPO tech in two iPhones for 2021, both of which could support Apple's 120Hz ProMotion feature.

The report also mentions improved optics and a reduced TrueDepth "notch." Zoom optics are specifically mentioned, though a recent report from analyst Ming-Chi Kuo said top-end iPhones will benefit from a more sensitive wide-angle camera and autofocus on the ultra-wide lenser.

Apple's work to slim down iPhone's TrueDepth notch is also well documented, with reports on the topic dating back to January.

As previously reported, Bloomberg sources expect screen sizes to remain the same, with 5.4- and 6.1-inch standard versions accompanying 6.1- and 6.7-inch Pro models.

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