It’s no secret that Apple doesn’t save on the components for its iPhone devices, with consumers being hit with more expensive phones each year. The iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro, and Pro Max have added a lot of new features, although the 5G cellular network component has been missing despite some other flagship phones already adapting to it in 2019. Nevertheless, popular Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo believes that the iPhone 12 design won’t cost significantly more for consumers if the Cupertino-based tech giant embraces 5G technologies.
In an earlier analysis by Kuo, it was widely speculated that the 2020 iPhone would launch with 5G-supported components. That way, consumers would be able to utilize the 5G cellular technology, ensuring a faster and more consistent cellular network on their smartphones, tablets, smart wearables and more.
However, getting the 5G components for the mentioned technology could lead to a significant price increase of the upcoming iPhone 12 design. The cost of the devices for consumers could lead to an increase of anywhere between $30 to $100, although that would depend on the model used. Still Ming-Chi Kuo believes that the iPhone 12 5G option wouldn’t be significantly more expensive compared to the models that came out this year.
At the moment, the starting price for the iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro and iPhone 11 Pro Max are $699, $999 and $1,099 respectively in the U.S.
As a TF International Securities research note obtained by MacRumors claims, Kuo said that the company plans to offset the cost of the iPhone 12 5G technology. It’ll achieve that by reducing the supply chain expenses. That also includes decreasing the upfront non-recurring engineering payment to its suppliers who would provide a new iPhone 12 design for the metal chassis that would be capable of supporting 5G technology.
If you’ve been wondering what non-recurring engineering means in this case, it refers to the engineering of components for the one-time cost. The cost would cover the research, design and development of the given component which would finally be tested for the market in the form of an entire product or a component. According to the analyst, the new iPhone 12 design would require Apple to shift its research and development in house to adapt to the new market conditions.
The report in Mac Rumors states that the non-recurring engineering payment has a history of helping Apple stay on top of the market with the iPhone during the times when there are no new reveals, meaning spring and summer, when the sales of the currently-active iPhones have already worn off.
“Non-recurring engineering refers to the one-time cost to research, design, develop, and test a new product or component. Kuo believes Apple will shift more of this research and development in house,” MacRumors reported.
Kuo believes that this will change in 2020 with iPhone 12 5G, because Apple is expected to have more announcements of iPhones, placing them in a biannual basis in the future. That said, it is believed that Apple will start announcing more budget-friendly and lower-end iPhone models in the first half of the year, while the higher-end models would come out in the second half of the year, in the fall as they used to.
This is not the first announcement concerning the iPhone 12 5G and iPhone 12 design in particular. Earlier this year, Kuo told MacRumors in another report that there will be 5G iPhones in 2020, and as well, that they will require a redesigned metal frame, which closely resembles that of iPhone 4.
That said, the iPhone 12 design is expected to look a lot like its old ancestor, boasting flatter edges, and a more squared-off design. As per the recent report, he said that the chassis and frame for the iPhone 12 5G will cost Apple more to design and develop, which means that the company is expected to feature a more premium design.
“We predict that the new 2H20 iPhone design will change significantly […] The metal frame and the front and rear 2/2.5D glass are still used, but the metal frame surface will be changed to a similar design to the iPhone 4, replacing the current surface design,” he was cited by MacRumors.
What about other iPhone 12 design rumors?
Other rumors, also citing Kuo, reveals that Apple’s 2020 iPhone will ship with the notorious notch which was first announced with iPhone X in 2017. Interestingly, a lot of other phone manufacturers dropped the notch. Nevertheless, other leaks and reports suggest that Apple plans to let the notch go, with a popular Twitter phone tipster Ben Geskin sharing a rendering of the future iPhone 12 design which was completely notchless in design.
Exclusive: One of the 2020 iPhone prototypes has 6.7-inch display with Face ID and TrueDepth camera system housed in the top bezel. pic.twitter.com/sAJE7J12ty
— Ben Geskin (@BenGeskin) September 26, 2019
This render of iPhone 12 boasts a 6.7-inch screen without the notch. Instead of the notch, there are thinner bezels with tiny TrueDepth camera components and other functions housed in them. Although it’s not certain if these will be on the actual iPhone 12, Geskin said that these are the renders for the 2020 iPhone model. Further, he shared that the company is testing Face ID prototypes tiny enough to fit in the phone’s top bezel.
What do you think about the iPhone 12 5G possibilities? Is the new design going to meet your expectations, if it turns out to be consistent with the rumors? Until then, we’ll have to wait and see, with new iPhone 12 design rumors to come in the future months.