A new report from the renowned KGI Securities hints at a possible iPhone 11 release date for 2018. The branding of this device hasn’t even been truly settled yet, but iPhone 11 is one possible name for the handset that will be a sequel to last year’s successful iPhone X.
However, aside from discussing the iPhone 11 release date, KGI suggests that shipments of the iPhone X have not been as strong as is generally believed. Analysts from the firm assert that Apple will ship approximately 18 million iPhone X units in the current quarter, which is significantly less than the 20 – 30 million that has been forecast elsewhere.
As is so often the case in the contemporary consumer marketplace, China is blamed for this statistical anomaly. Weakened demand for the iPhone X is being driven by longer replacement cycles in the world’s most populous nation, according to KGI experts.
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Meanwhile, the iPhone 11 release date will be accompanied by the unveiling of three separate devices. This has been frequently rumored in the buildup to the iPhone 11, and has now been confirmed by KGI as well.
Undoubtedly the standout of these three phones will be a 6.5-inch OLED device, which will be dominated by what would be by far the largest screen that Apple has ever included in a mobile device. Alongside this will be two other models, with one of these featuring an improved 6.1-inch LCD display.
And the third release will be the successor to the iPhone X, meaning that consumers will be provided with a tantalizing choice of devices when the iPhone 11 release date rolls round. KGI indicates that this will occur in the fall once more, with a staggered release of the three handsets probable.
iPhone X to be discontinued
Interestingly, KGI predicts that Apple may stop manufacturing the iPhone X completely when production of the new 2018 models ramps up. This will mean that sales of the device are essential for Apple in the foreseeable future, as it attempts to get a decent return on of the investment that it made in its tenth generation mobile.
Apple’s position in the Chinese marketplace has been partially instigated by a downturn in consumer spending. So it will also be interesting to see the iPhone 11 release date in the East Asian economic powerhouse, as the general assumption is that Apple, and indeed other smartphone manufacturers, are particularly reliant on growth in developing economies such as China. This will obviously be difficult to achieve if consumers are holding on to their existing smartphones for longer than expected.
In addition, lower shipment forecasts from developing competitors such as Huawei and Oppo have also dented the success of the iPhone 11 in China, with claims that the notch screen design has also proved unpopular.
Indeed, the move to release a 6.5-inch iPhone may be dictated by the Chinese marketplace. It is generally asserted that consumers in China prefer phones with larger screens, meaning that the Apple iPhone X hasn’t necessarily captured the imagination of the Chinese mobile sphere to the same extent as other competitors.
As Apple prepares for the iPhone 11 release date, KGI predicts that the consumer electronics giant will ship around 13 million iPhone X units in the forthcoming economic quarter. KGI expects the iPhone X to “go to end of life around mid-2018,” and predicts overall sales for the unit in the region of 62 million. This will be something of a disappointment for Apple, considering that KGI previously predicted that it would sell 80 million worldwide.
There is no specific indication why Apple would phase out the iPhone X when the iPhone 11 release date rolls round, particularly as it is usual practice for flagships to hang around for at least a few years at reduced prices. Perhaps Apple is ready to release another ambitious smartphone in 2018, rather than simply relying on the incremental updates of previous years. But data on the next gen handsets does provide a clue to this conundrum.
Despite the struggles that Apple has experienced in selling the iPhone X, at least according to KGI, the analyst organisation still predicts that the iconic brand will achieve an approximate 5 percent growth in iPhone shipments for the first half of 2018, in comparison to last year. KGI is also bullish on the fall 2018 iPhone lineup – “when the real super cycle will kick in” – so overall it’s is not all bad news for Apple.
KGI suggests that consumers will also have a pleasant surprise when the iPhone 11 release date is unveiled, as the analyst organisation predicts that the 6.1-inch LCD model will be priced at a significantly lower RRP than the existing iPhone X. Predicting a price tag in the $650-750 range, it seems that this new device will supersede the iPhone X, and provide consumers with an outstanding market choice.
And KGI is also positive on iPhone shipments over the calendar year as a whole, suggesting that they will grow in the region of 10 percent. This is actually more positive than the smartphone industry as a whole, which could even experience negative growth during the calendar year. So it seems that Apple’s sales remain robust in a challenging time for the market.
Aside from the iPhone 11 release date, the number of units that Apple will release, and the screen sizes, rumors are fairly sparse on the new features to be included in this smartphone. However, with Samsung patents for an embedded fingerprint sensor and camera having recently emerged, it is highly likely that Apple will follow suit in this department, at least with some of the devices (Apple dropped fingerprint sensor technology with the iPhone X).
Additionally, the enlarged screen size of the iPhone 11 Plus suggests that the resolution of the device could be increased, while improved camera provisions can also be expected. The most likely iPhone 11 release date is September 2018, although one of the three units may appear in October 2018, with Apple opting for a staggered release for the second year in succession.