With September fast approaching, Apple is once more gearing up for the launch of one of its most essential devices — the iPhone. With three devices expected to hit the shelves this year, here is a brief outline of what we know so far about this year’s iPhones.
According to noted Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo back in November 2017, the Cupertino-based tech giant is planning on releasing three smartphones this year, according to a report from The Street. While the rumor seemed unlikely then, recent leaks about the upcoming devices do point to Apple releasing a 6.1-inch “budget” iPhone, a 5.8-inch iPhone X successor, and a larger, 6.5-inch iPhone X Plus model. Renders of these three devices now populate the internet, with the 6.1-inch iPhone garnering quite a lot of attention due to its similarities with its more expensive siblings.
This year’s iPhones are expected to be a bit different from the past year’s releases, in the way that Apple is finally abandoning its outdated iPhone 6-style frame for a bezel-less design similar to the iPhone X. According to recent rumors, however, the 6.1-inch “budget” iPhone would have thicker bezels around the device due to the limitations of its LCD screen. For a device that has a bona fide iPhone X design with a lower price, however, thicker bezels around the device are a small price to pay.
Specs-wise, the 2018 iPhones are expected to feature improvements over the previous models. The 6.5-inch iPhone X Plus, for one, is speculated to feature three lenses on its main rear camera. The 6.1-inch LCD iPhone, on the other hand, is expected to lack some of its more expensive siblings’ features, such as FaceID, 3D Touch, and a second rear camera.
With Apple recently hitting a market cap of $1 trillion, the pressure is on for the company to show that it could continue its immense growth in its smartphone business — a division that pretty much catapulted the tech giant to new heights due to the dominance of the iPhone in the market. Thus, expectations are high that this year’s devices will be priced more aggressively, with the 6.1-inch LCD iPhone costing somewhere in the $650-$750 range and the 6.5-inch iPhone X Plus being priced at the same bracket as last year’s 5.8-inch iPhone X.
All three 2018 iPhones are expected to be unveiled in September. As stated in a CNET report, however, Morgan Stanley analyst Katy Huberty noted that the 6.1-inch LCD iPhone would likely start shipping sometime in October, roughly one month after its more expensive siblings hit the market.
“We currently see no delay in the ramp of Apple’s upcoming flagship 5.8-inch or 6.5-inch OLED iPhones. However suspected issues with LED backlight leakage have caused a one-month delay in mass production of the 6.1-inch LCD iPhone, although this is down from a six-week delay baked into the original production forecast, according to suppliers,” the analyst said.