A (PRODUCT)RED iPhone 15 May Be on the Horizon

PRODUCT RED iPhone over donuts Credit: (RED) / X
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We’re seemingly overdue for one of Apple’s mid-cycle iPhone color updates, leading many to believe Apple is skipping that tradition this year. However, the company might have another surprise in store for us.

Today, the official (RED) account posted a teaser on the social network formerly known as Twitter, showing a red iPhone being held over a tray of donuts with the tagline, “Have an Apple before your donut.”

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While it’s hard to know for sure from the photo, this could be the (PRODUCT)RED iPhone 15 that was missing from the lineup for the first time in several years. Of course, it could also just as easily be an iPhone 14, which is still available in a (PRODUCT)RED version, but what would be the point of that?

It also seems too much to be a mere coincidence that June 7, 2024, is National Donut Day. That’s the Friday before Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) is scheduled to kick off, which adds another layer of whimsy to (RED)’s post.

Apple’s partnership with (RED) goes back to 2006 when it released a special edition of the second-generation iPod nano in what’s now become a classic PRODUCT(RED) finish. At the time, the company pledged that a flat $10 from the sale of each iPod nano would go to the Global Fund through (RED).

Since then, Apple has raised over $270 million for the Global Fund to fight against HIV/AIDS and related health epidemics in developing countries — including COVID-19 in recent years.

Those funds have been generated through sales of the iPod nano and numerous other entries in the (PRODUCT)RED lineup, which continued through five generations of the portable music player and into the iPod shuffle, iPod touch, and a series of accessories such as cases and watch bands.

Despite Apple’s longstanding commitment to (RED), it took until 2017 before we saw the first (PRODUCT)RED iPhone, a special edition version of the iPhone 7 series that was released in the spring, foreshadowing Apple’s more recent trend of other mid-cycle colors.

The (PRODUCT)RED iPhone 7 featured white bezels on the front, differentiating it from the spring 2018 iPhone 8 release that sported more traditional black bezels. Later that year, (PRODUCT)RED became part of the standard color palette when the iPhone XR arrived in a broader assortment of new colors.

The (PRODUCT)RED edition remained a staple color choice through the subsequent four generations of standard iPhones — the iPhone 11, iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 mini, iPhone 13 and iPhone 13 mini, and the iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Plus. It also came to the Apple Watch Series 6 in 2020.

This made its absence in last fall’s iPhone 15 palette all the more conspicuous. While Apple never commented on the omission, some assumed that perhaps the new color-infused glass techniques the company adopted for the new models didn’t lend themselves well to a deeper and richer shade of red. That theory makes a lot of sense, considering how blandly pastel the shades are this time around.

With rumors that Apple might apply this technique to the entire iPhone 16 lineup this year, it’s safe to say that it’s probably come up with a way to create more vibrant colors. Introducing the (PRODUCT)RED iPhone 15 might be a great proving ground for it.

[The information provided in this article has NOT been confirmed by Apple and may be speculation. Provided details may not be factual. Take all rumors, tech or otherwise, with a grain of salt.]

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