When asked about making a larger iPhone, the late Steve Jobs once replied, "no one's going to buy that."
That's not what Wall Street is thinking right now. In its latest report, Pacific Crest Securities raised its rating on Apple to "outperform" from "sector perform" on the basis that a larger-screened iPhone 6 could boost growth in Apple's fiscal year 2015. PacCrest now has a target of $635 per share for the tech giant.
One difference in the iPhone market that didn't exist four years ago when Jobs made his statement is the increasing demand from China. Three months ago, Apple began selling its iPhones to China Mobile's 760 million customers. Given the expense of an iPhone (nearly $900 in some cases) in a country with a lower average income than the US, the iPhone doubles as a tablet for many in China.
However, a larger iPhone screen will come at a price to consumers, according to CNBC contributor Gina Sanchez, founder of Chantico Global.
"If it gets a bigger screen," says Sanchez, "and it increases its graphics and its processor performance, that is going to come at a cost. That cost is going to be battery power. This has been a problem with Apple in the past."
"So, I'm not sure it's necessarily a layup that a larger screen iPhone is going to be the end-all, be-all for Apple."
(See: CNBC's Tech coverage)
Talking Numbers contributor Richard Ross, Global Technical Strategist at Auerbach Grayson, says a larger iPhone may be a good thing for Apple at least from the technicals perspective.
Ross notes the stock has had a 13% pullback to its 150-day moving average, similar in scope to an earlier 13% pullback.
"The last time, it provided the catalyst for a very strong advance," says Ross. "I think we can get an expansion of volatility and an upside breakout which sets the stage for a run all the way up to $600 a share."
"I think a bigger phone is exactly what we need," says Ross. "It could be the fundamental catalyst to drive a great technical setup here in Apple. I'm a buyer."
To see the full discussion on Apple with Sanchez on the fundamentals and Ross on the charts, watch the video above.
- Technology & Electronics