A new report suggests that Apple will release not two but three new iPhones this year. DigiTimes is reporting that its sources claim there will be an iPhone 6S, iPhone 6S Plus and iPhone 6C in the second half of this year.
This isn’t exactly a new report, but it does refresh a rumor we heard late last year.
Three new iPhone models?
According to DigiTimes, all three of the rumored iPhones will have LTPS panels. Japan Display, LG Display and Sharp are expected to supply the panels for the iPhone 6C and iPhone 6S. The panels for the iPhone 6S are expected to be supplied by LG and Japan Display. The iPhone 6C is expected to have a 4-inch display like its predecessor, the iPhone 5C.
All three of the iPhones are expected to have Corning’s Gorilla Glass. The report also indicates that the iPhone 6S and iPhone 6S Plus will have A9 chips while the iPhone 6C will have an A8 chip. All three models are rumored to have near field communication and fingerprint scanners. We’ve seen a few iPhone 6C concepts lately, one of which sports a fingerprint scanner like this rumor suggests.
DigiTimes’ sources further said that Wistron is expected to win the contract to manufacture the iPhone 6C while Pegatron and Foxconn / Hon Hai are expected to be manufacturing the iPhone 6S and iPhone 6S Plus.
Apple targets emerging markets
In December, Apple was said to be working on what, at the time, was called an iPhone 6 Mini. It’s basically the same thing DigiTimes is reporting now, as it’s a 4-inch iPhone 6 model, but the name has been changed. The name iPhone 6C would make sense because it sounds like the phone will follow in the footsteps of the less expensive iPhone 5C, which was launched in 2013. Also the timing of the smaller iPhone 6’s launch has been changed from early 2015 to the second half of this year.
According to another report from DigiTimes, Apple is aiming the so-called iPhone 6C at emerging markets, which is consistent with the strategy for the iPhone 5C. The less expensive iPhone is also said to be targeting the entry- to mid-range smartphone market.
Apple faces design challenges with iPhone 6C
DigiTimes’ sources added, however, that Apple “is advised to avoid the pitfalls it encountered with the 5C regarding product design, pricing and timing.” They added that the release of an iPhone 6C is interesting because Apple did not sell as many iPhone 5C models as it had expected to.
They said the major design flaw was the use of the plastic case, which made the iPhone 5C look cheap compared to its more expensive counterparts. However, Apple is still expected to use a plastic case for the iPhone 6C in order to keep the cost of materials down.
The price was wrong
The sources also stated that pricing is especially important this time around because the iPhone 5C was priced too high at $600, which caused many buyers to opt instead for the iPhone 5S, which started out at $720. Because inventory levels of the 5C were so high, Apple cut the price of the 8-gigabyte model to $450 in March 2014.
They suggested instead that Apple should price the iPhone 6C between $400 and $500. They further said the reason emerging market consumers didn’t go for the iPhone 5C was because they’re more concerned about pricing than anything else.