We still don’t know whether Apple is actually planning to release a 4-inch “iPhone 6c” this year but a new report out of China indicates that Apple is at least starting to place component orders for the device.
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According to GSM Dome, Apple has placed a significant order of camera sensors with Sony for the iPhone 6c, a move that puts pressure on Chinese Android device makers.
Two Chinese analysts familiar with the matter have learned that Sony can currently meet just 50% of the demand received from Chinese companies now that Apple has reserved a huge chunk of camera sensors for the iPhone 6c.
The iPhone 6c will launch in September, the report goes on to say, without revealing other details about the device. The analysts have not specified what kind of camera sensors the iPhone 6c will pack either.
Companies including Huawei, ZTE, Oppo and Coolpad are apparently turning to Sony’s rivals — including Samsung, Toshiba or OmiVision — to meet their own camera needs. HTC is also believed to have turned to Toshiba for cameras on its devices, after having been refused by Sony.
Apple this year is expected to launch at least two new iPhones, the 4.7-inch iPhone 6s and the 5.5-inch iPhone 6s Plus. The company is likely to unveil the devices at some point in September and launch them during the same month in various markets. Well-known analyst Ming-Chi Kuo said a number of times that Apple doesn’t plan to release a 4-inch iPhone this year.