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Is Apple building a 5.7-inch iPhone phablet?

Apple is reportedly weighing the release of a large, 5.7-inch iPhone, which would put the device squarely in phablet territory. 

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Apple CEO Tim Cook addresses the crowd during the Apple WWDC event in San Francisco on June 10, 2013. Among the next products released by Apple may be a big-screen phablet.

Reuters

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The iPhone 5 shipped with a four-inch display – half an inch larger than the screen on the iPhone 4. And now, according to Reuters, Apple is "exploring" the possibility of building an iPhone with a 5.7-inch display, which would put the device squarely in phablet territory. 

That 5.7-inch device would reportedly join a wider array of iPhones, including more traditionally-sized models, and models available in five or six different colors. (The iPhone is now currently available only in black and white.)

Reuters reports that Apple's pivot toward the phablet "comes as the long-time consumer and investor darling faces pressure to deliver more than one new handset model a year. Critics say its pace of innovation has slowed since the death of legendary co-founder Steve Jobs." Apple, for its part, isn't commenting. 

Still, there's probably something to the news, not least because the Reuters article was penned by three top tech reporters, and sourced to "four people with knowledge of the matter." There's also the issue that Apple sold only five million iPhone 5s in the first three days the device was on sale – a formidable number, to be sure, but well short of estimates that Apple would unload a full 6 to 10 million during the iPhone 5's debut weekend. 

Apple will want to shake up its launch calendar in the years ahead, and also shake up the kinds of technology it delivers. 

Of course, as Sascha Segan notes over at PCMag.com, Apple is rumored to be making all sorts of devices, from a watch to a television screen.

"I don't think the analysts were making any of that up. Apple has been working on a TV for years – it just hasn't gotten the hardware and content deals aligned to its satisfaction," Segan writes. "With phablets a success in most of the world, it's a no-brainer that Apple is doing its due diligence on phablets. Just don't think that means Apple has actually decided to make one." 

For more tech news, follow us on Twitter @venturenaut.


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