Apple is planning three new handsets for later this year, including one that could come with a big, wraparound screen, according to a new report.
In a note to investors on Wednesday, Cowen and Company analyst Timothy Arcuri said that he spoke with supply chain sources who told him Apple is planning an iPhone 8 this year that will come with a "fixed flex" screen. This design would mark the iPhone's 10th anniversary.
The display, which Samsung has offered in products like its Galaxy S7 Edge, would measure 5.8 inches and wrap around the sides, Arcuri said, according to AppleInsider, which obtained a copy of his research note. It would also allow Apple to offer an edge-to-edge display, effectively turning the face of the handset into a big screen.
Apple has been rumored to be working on a big update to the iPhone. Reports have been mixed on what exactly the handset might offer, but a curved, OLED-based screen measuring 5.8 inches has been floated before. An edge-to-edge screen has also been reported, along with a new Touch ID sensor that would be baked into the glass, eliminating the need to have a home button under the display.
It's believed that the handset would complement the iPhone 7s and iPhone 7s Plus, which are also expected to be released this year and offer minor updates over last year's iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus.
In addition to a new design, Arcuri told AppleInsider that Apple's big iPhone update, currently codenamed iPhone X, could come with facial and gesture recognition that would be powered by a laser sensor. It's also likely the handset will ship with wireless charging support.
There are some potential pitfalls to offering such a big update, Arcuri said. He noted that the OLED display and an in-screen fingerprint reader could be hounded by poor yields and low inventory, making it hard for Apple to get enough products to store shelves in order to satisfy what could be massive demand for its device.
Apple is expected to announce its new iPhones later this year and will likely release the devices in September.