DigiTimes, which has a spotty track record with regard to their Apple rumors, is reporting that the iPhone maker is having trouble with low yield rates with the rumored fingerprint reader that is said to be part of the upcoming iPhone’s Home button.
“Volume production of fingerprint-recognition and LCD driver chips for the iPhone 5S should have started at the end of June or early in July, but issues related to yield rates will delay commercial production of the two chips to the end of July, therefore affecting the initial supply of the iPhone 5S, the sources explained.”
Many people, myself included, expect Apple to follow last year’s September announcement of a new iPhone followed up with October shipments. If that is true, and full production runs of the iPhone 5S are just now ramping up, there should still be plenty of time to build the millions of iPhone 5S handsets that will be needed globally in October. If that is true, one had to wonder how a device that Apple has not yet publicly talked about or announced be considered ‘late’ if it ships in October and not September.
I think that there are two more important things to consider here. The first is that Apple really does leverage last year’s acquisition of Florida based AuthenTec to build and include a biometric fingerprint scanner into their smartphone. I would love to be able to use that technology to secure my iPhone with a finger swipe rather than a clumsy PIN code. That would be an amazing feature that will be a head of the competition.
The second thing to consider is whether iOS 7 is ready in time to be installed on the new hardware. If the software takes longer to work the major bugs out, it could impact the ship date as I don’t see Apple launching the iPhone 5S without iOS 7.