Apple is widely expected to debut three iPhones this year. The rumored ‘iPhone XI’ and ‘iPhone XI Plus’ have gotten most of the attention, but details regarding the third device in the lineup have been more sparse.
Well, today, well-connected KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has shared additional information about that third, reportedly mid-range iPhone.
According to previous reports, that iPhone is largely expected to sport a handful of iPhone X-esque features with several design tweaks to allow it to be sold at a cheaper price point.
Basically, it’s a mid-range device that will let users get Apple’s latest features without breaking the bank.
The LCD iPhone is rumored to sport a rather strange feature-set for a mid-range smartphone — and especially for an Apple iPhone.
Here are the features forecasted for the device, according to Kuo’s newly published research note and previous reports.
- 6.1-inch form factor, presumably because of the rise in popularity of larger devices.
- LCD-based display, rather than OLED tech rumored for its two stablemates.
- Edge-to-edge display design.
- Face ID in lieu of a Home button and a fingerprint sensor.
- Single-lens rear camera. That means no optical zoom.
- Aluminum frame, rather than stainless steel rumored for the other two 2018 iPhones.
- No wireless charging, if that aluminum construction includes the back chassis (which has previously been rumored).
- A standard, rectangular-shaped battery, rather than Apple’s new L-shaped design.
- A non-stacked logic board design, similar to the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus.
- 3GB of RAM, rather than the 4GB slated for the iPhone XI and iPhone XI Plus.
- No 3D Touch.
According to KGI Securities’ research note on Tuesday, development of the 6.1-inch LCD iPhone has fallen behind those of its OLED stablemates. But the research firm added that the device will likely enjoy “extended longevity” through the first quarter of 2019, and will account for around 50 percent of total iPhone shipments this year and into next.
A mid-range device with this form factor will likely also spur sales in critical markets like China, where consumers expect premium devices to sport large displays, and in India, where Apple has yet to obtain a strong foothold in terms of market share.
Kuo believes that the 6.1-inch LCD iPhone will be unveiled this fall alongside its OLED counterparts — the so-called 5.8-inch iPhone XI and 6.5-inch iPhone XI Plus.
KGI Securities predicts that it will retail for between $700 and $800 in the U.S., which is a slight price spike above his previous $650 to $750 estimate for the device. Notably, that price point could correlate with the fact that Apple will retire the iPhone X this year, rather than continue selling it at a reduced price.