You may recall that last week, a rumour popped up from DigiTimes that Apple will produce three different iPhone models this year – the iPhone 6S, iPhone 6S Plus and a budget offering, the iPhone 6C, with a 4in screen.
But one phone expert – Michael Oh, president and founder of Apple repair firm Tech Superpowers in the US – has told Information Week that a third budget iPhone model which keeps the 4in display is an unlikely state of affairs.
He reckons it’s “very difficult” to believe that Cupertino would return to a smaller display and form factor, following the move to a minimum 4.7in screen size last autumn – it would look like a step backwards, Oh argued, and he might well have a point.
He told Information Week that this would only be feasible if the handset was substantially altered in some manner: “It could be incredible pixel density, but then you run into legibility issues and so forth. It could be that it serves as some other interface or design, but I can’t think of a way that would work without it being a step back.” He then added that “the other possibility is that it’s super, super cheap.”
In other words, could the iPhone 6C actually be a proper budget iPhone, as opposed to the 5C which, when it first came out, was merely a bit cheaper than the 5S (it was £469 for the base model – that said, you can now get it from £319 with a halved 8GB of storage, but even then it’s not exactly truly budget).
Could we see an iPhone under £300 this year? That goes against Apple’s premium pricing philosophy with its gadgets, of course, so we’re not convinced – plus speculation has it that the iPhone 6C will come with Touch ID this time, which the 5C didn’t have, and that doesn’t exactly point to the idea of a cheaper device.
The iPhone 6C may only be hot air anyway, but if it does pitch up later this year, the price point will be a crucial factor.