Apple is expected to launch two new iPhone models this year, a 4.7-inch iPhone 6s and a 5.5-inch iPhone 6s Plus. Multiple reports have already detailed some of the specs and features on the new smartphones, with one insider claiming that with the iPhone 6s family, Apple is trying to prevent future “Bendgate” issues. And it looks like that rumor is now getting more traction from Taiwan, where a known Apple iPhone supplier appears to have just confirmed one major iPhone 6s feature.
According to remarks made by Catcher Technologies CEO chairman Allen Horng during a media briefing after the company’s shareholders’ meting, Apple might indeed use hardened metal for its iPhone 6s.
Previous reports said Apple is considering 7000 Series aluminum for the iPhone 6s metal case, in order to prevent unwanted bending. The same type of aluminum is used on the Apple Watch Sport model.
Horng did not specifically name Apple or the ext iPhone 6s in his remarks, but he offered hints pointing to Apple, a Taipei Times report suggests.
Horng said that in the first five months of the year, Catcher’s sales were up 64.05% from last year, but revenue this quarter will be flat compared to the second quarter. Furthermore, he added that sales in the fourth quarter will pick up significantly due to major orders from big smartphone clients.
In other words, Catcher’s revenue and outlook closely mirror Apple’s iPhone sales cycle.
Things got more interesting when Horng started speaking about future smartphone projects for his clients. He said that Catcher is apparently working on a surface treatment on a harder metallic material, a task that’s more difficult than traditional metal-casing processes. As a result, lower yield rates are expected at the beginning of the process.
“However, it will not be a major issue for Catcher, as we keep improving our techniques,” Horng said. He added that metal casing treatments are more delicate and complicated than people imagine, and that the work requires more than just access to advanced equipment, which is why Catcher isn’t worried about its competitors.
Horng further said that he’s not worried about the performance of Catcher’s clients when it comes to smartphone and notebook sales. “Overall, our main clients are on the winning team,” he said, again pointing at Apple, which has enjoyed record iPhone 6 sales since launching it last September.
Catcher Technologies apparently also has an opportunity to make metal cases for the Apple Watch, the online publication revealed, saying that Horng has worn what looks like a Sport model for a month.