Apple wants to open new Arizona sapphire plant ASAP to build 'critical' components
Construction on Apple’s new sapphire crystal manufacturing plant in Mesa, Arizona, is apparently moving along as a blistering pace – so much so that the Cupertino-based company has an aggressive plan to open the facility next month but it’s what Apple plans to use the new sapphire components for that has the Internet abuzz today.
9to5Mac was able to track down some documents showing correspondence between U.S. Foreign Trade Zone officials and Apple’s Deputy Director of Global Trade Compliance that were recently made public by the Foreign Trade Zones Board.
In the documents, Apple points out that the high-tech manufacturing process will create a critical new sub-component of Apple products to be used in the manufacture of the consumer electronics that will be imported and then sold globally.
The “critical new sub-components” is vague at best but suggests that Apple may be eyeballing the sapphire components for a completely new product. But exactly what new product are we talking about?
Earlier rumors suggest Apple is working with Foxconn to conduct a test run of sapphire iPhone displays, possibly for use on the iPhone 6. Such screens could offer superior scratch resistance qualities but at the same time, Apple could also be eyeballing the technology for other devices like iPads, iPods or the long-rumored iWatch. The latter option makes a lot of sense as the device would be out in the open most of the time on your wrist.
Another plausible option could include using the sapphire for the Touch ID Home button on future revisions of the iPad.
The iPhone 5s is the Apple’s latest flagship handset. The iPhone 5s is powered by a first of its kind 64-bit A7 processor and the same 4" Retina display as its predecessor. It also includes a fingerprint reader dubbed Touch ID, HD video capture at 720p at 120FPS that can also perform slow motion at 120FPS. Battery life on the iPhone 5s is rated for 10 hours of 3G talk time, LTE browsing, Wi-Fi browsing and video.
The iPhone 5C replaces the iPhone 5 with nearly identical tech specs, a plastic-based exterior and 5 color choices, a first in the iPhone family. The 5C features the same 4" Retina display, A6 CPU, 8-megapixel rear iSight camera, a new front-facing FaceTime HD camera with better low light support, dual-band Wi-Fi a/b/g/n, Bluetooth 4.0, a higher capacity battery and support for more LTE bands.
The iPad Air is the fifth generation of Apple's highly remarkable tablet. It features a 9.7 inch Retina display and is powered by a 64 bit, A7 chip running iOS 7. Other features includes a 5MP camera that shoots HD video, an improved front facing FaceTime camera, Siri and dual microphones. It comes in 16GB, 32GB, 64GB and 128GB of storage. Last but not least, the iPad Air weighs only 1 pound.
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