New, Cheaper iPhone To Be Released Early Next Year, Apple Analyst Claims

The new iPhone would offer upgraded internals to an existing product in Apple's lineup, new reports claim.

A customer tries an Apple Inc. iPhone SE at the company's Omotesando store on March 31, 2016 in Tokyo, Japan. Apple Inc. launched its iPhone SE and iPad Pro 9.7 inch on March 31, 2016 in Japan.
Tomohiro Ohsumi / Getty Images

The new iPhone would offer upgraded internals to an existing product in Apple's lineup, new reports claim.

It hasn’t yet been a month since Apple released the iPhone 11 and iPhone 11 Pro, but recent rumors suggest the company is gearing up to announce a new iPhone model in the first quarter of next year.

The model, which will be a cheaper model than the company’s latest iPhone 11, 11 Pro, and 11 Pro Max, is expected to debut in the first quarter of next year, according to Ming-Chi Kuo, an Apple analyst with a proven track record of predicting Apple’s next move, 9to5Mac reported Thursday.

While Apple’s priciest iPhones are its iPhone 11 Pro and Pro Max, which start at $999 and $1,099, respectively, it surprised consumers when it announced the iPhone 11 at a new, cheaper price point – $699, down from 2018’s $749 iPhone XR it replaced.

When the Cupertino, California, company announced its 2019 iPhone models, it retained last year’s iPhone XR, dropping the price to $599. Apple fans who want the cheapest available iPhone currently have to purchase the iPhone 8, which the company introduced in 2017. The 2-year-old model retails for $499.

The rumors suggest that the new model, tentatively dubbed the iPhone SE 2, would essentially be an upgraded iPhone 8 model, featuring a similar design with upgraded internals. According to 9to5mac, the iPhone SE 2 would feature Apple’s A13 processor and an upgraded 3 GB of ram. The iPhone 8 features a dated Apple A11 processor and just 2 GB of ram, which is low when compared to offerings from Apple and its competitors in 2019.

The SE 2 would be a successor to the iPhone SE, a phone Apple released in 2016 as a lower cost model for consumers who didn’t want its pricier iPhone 6 or 6 Plus phones but still wanted an updated model. The previous iPhone SE followed a similar design to Apple’s iPhone 5 and 5S models. Users who purchased that phone who enjoyed its smaller footprint with a screen size of just 4 inches might be disappointed by news of the SE follow-up, which would likely have the iPhone 8 display size, which comes in at a larger 4.7 inches.

A new Apple iPhone 11 Pro is shown in a Apple store on the first day of the phone's sale at the Apple Store on September 20, 2019 in Berlin, Germany
  Carsten Koall / Getty Images
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Notably, the iPhone 8 is the last of Apple’s current iPhone offerings to feature a home button and Touch ID, a biometric fingerprint scanner integrated into the button. Apple has phased out this technology in favor of Face ID, its biometric face scanning technology, beginning on the iPhone X in 2017. Rumors have also suggested, however, that Apple might at some point plan on including Touch ID under the display in future iPhone models, but it’s unlikely this feature would be present on the rumored iPhone SE 2.

As The Inquisitr previously reported, in September, Apple released iOS 13 to consumers, which provided users without the latest Apple phone models to capitalize on new features, including improvements to photo editing, changes to Apple Maps, security and performance upgrades, and a long-awaited dark mode.

Apple isn’t expected to announce changes to its flagship models until later next year.