We've known for several months that Apple is planning on introducing four iPhone 12 models this fall; what we didn't know was how much they'd cost. And while lots can change between now and the new iPhones' scheduled release this fall, we've just received our first clues.
The news arrives from Korea's The Elec (opens in new tab), by way of PhoneArena (opens in new tab), and hints at familiar prices across the board for Apple's next handsets. The Elec sat down with analyst Chung-Hoon Lee of UBI Research, who offered insight as to where he believes the prices for each model will end up.
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Lee estimates the cheapest and smallest iPhone 12 of the bunch — the 5.4-inch model — will start at $700, while the larger 6.1-inch variant reportedly could tack on a $50 premium. Meanwhile, the 6.1-inch iPhone 12 Pro and 6.7-inch Pro Max, as they've been unofficially named, may cost $999 and $1,099, respectively. That's the same as the current iPhone 11 Pro and iPhone 11 Pro Max.
The Elec's interview dives into further details regarding Apple's difficulty in delivering those two cheaper models at more affordable prices. With all four upcoming iPhones supposedly turning to OLED panels — and the ongoing coronavirus pandemic sure to limit sales — Apple is under more pressure to keep costs down than ever before.
One of the ways in which Cupertino may do that is by integrating the touch-sensitive layers on the phone's screen into the panel itself, Lee explains. However, Apple's also wrestling with multiple display suppliers simultaneously, and so it's unclear if it'll be able to achieve its cost targets.
And so those prices — especially that $700 tag for the 5.4-inch iPhone 12 — are certainly not final, and could shift based on market conditions. That said, were Apple to release a smaller iPhone with 5G for such a low price, it'd certainly differentiate the company's offerings from the likes of Samsung and OnePlus, both of which have been focused on delivering very expensive and very large 5G-connected models as of late.
There seems to be renewed interest in smaller phones since the release of the iPhone SE 2020, so perhaps this year is the right time for Apple to widen the breadth of its flagship offerings, and deliver an option slightly more compact than the existing 5.8-inch iPhone 11 Pro.