Update: With an 120Hz LTPO display tipped, the iPhone 14 Max could be the phone to get in 2022.
Good news, iPhone bargain hunters — a prominent analyst says that you're going to pay less for a future Apple flagship phone. Now for the bad news: he doesn't mean the iPhone 13. Instead, that cheaper iPhone is expected to arrive in 2022.
The prediction comes from leading Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, who has a pretty good track record for forecasting Apple's future moves. In a research note spotted by 9to5Mac, Kuo addresses iPhone 14 pricing. Yes, that's right — not the iPhone 13 expected to arrive this fall, but the models coming out the year after that.
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According to Kuo, Apple will once again come out with four iPhones in 2022 — two low-end devices with 6.1- and 6.7-inch screens and two Pro models with the same screen sizes. The 6.7-inch entry level model, tentatively called the iPhone 14 Max would cost less than $900, making it the cheapest 6.7-inch phone Apple has offered. Apple's iPhone 12 Pro Max is the company's only current 6.7-inch offering, and that phone sells for $1,099.
Phone prices have been inching upwards for years, though recently, phone makers have looked to clamp down on costs in response to consumers holding on to their handsets for longer. In 2019, Apple introduced the iPhone 11 for $50 less than the iPhone XR's introductory price. This spring's Galaxy S21 update saw Samsung cut the starting prices on its phone by $200 from their comparable S20 versions. Ming's report would suggest that Apple would like to keep that trend going, at least for the iPhone 14.
But we're getting ahead of ourselves, as we haven't even seen the iPhone 13's launch yet. That's expected to happen around September, and when the phones do arrive, most analysts — Kuo included — are predicting Apple will introduce the same four models as last year. While concrete pricing rumors for the iPhone 13 haven't really emerged, the general consensus is that this year's phones will cost around the same as the iPhone 12 models, with the iPhone 13 mini starting at $699 and the iPhone 13 Pro costing $999.
The iPhone 13 is expected to introduce fast-refreshing displays to Apple's Pro models, while all four phones are likely to include LiDAR sensors with their current camera arrays to aid in AR-powered apps and features. We're also anticipating a new processor powering this year's Apple phones.
As for the iPhone 14, rumors paint a less detailed picture at this point — not surprising since the phone would be 15 months away from its debut. Kuo believes the future phones will bring back Touch ID in the form of an under-display sensor, and other rumors have pointed to a 48-megapixel main camera. Kuo's report would also suggest that the iPhone 13 mini will be the last compact phone Apple features, barring any update to the iPhone SE line.