Bigger is better: Apple’s ‘iPhone 7’ to come in three sizes with better hardware as displays get larger?

“A leaked report from KGI Securities’ Ming-Chi Kuo (dubbed ‘the best Apple analyst on the planet’) reveals Apple is going to dramatically shake things up with the iPhone 7. And given Kuo’s remarkable track record, when he speaks it is worth serious attention,” Gordon Kelly writes for Forbes. “How he breaks this down is the introduction of an entry level 4-inch iPhone 7 with metal chassis. Next will come the 4.7-inch iPhone 7, but it will be more clearly repositioned as a step down from 5.5-inch iPhone 7 Plus with the latter having improved performance and 50% more RAM (3GB vs 2GB).”

“Apple finally playing ball with customers who still love the smaller 4-inch form factor will be big news, but it is equally newsworthy that the company finally looks set to admit the ‘Plus’ range is more than just a size increase on the standard iPhone. Apple has already been hinting at this for two generations by selling the standard model with an inferior screen, optics and far worse battery life,” Kelly writes. “In fact in my iPhone 6S vs iPhone 6S Plus review, I remarked that the Plus was a vastly superior experience to the standard model in almost every way – except portability.”

“Kuo says the 4-inch iPhone 7 won’t come with 3D Touch and will use the Apple A9 chipset from the iPhone 6S/6S Plus rather than the A10 chip he states will feature in the 4.7-inch iPhone 7 and 5.5-inch iPhone 7 Plus,” Kelly writes. “While I think every iPhone 6S buyer would concede the iPhone 6S Plus is a superior device, it still sells in higher volumes simply because it is smaller (the $100 price difference plays little role with a long term contract). This shows how polarising large phones remain and to make the 4.7-inch model a more obvious second class citizen could lose some of the prestige from the brand.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: The 5.5-inch iPhone 6 Plus was and now the iPhone 6s Plus is clearly Apple’s flagship iPhone. The 4.7-inch iPhone 6s is the world’s second-bets smartphone.

As we wrote last October:

Unsurprisingly, we have both the iPhone 6 and the iPhone 6 Plus… The iPhone 6 is a beautiful phone. It’s the second best smartphone in the world, in fact. But, lay them both on our desk and we’ll grab the Plus when heading out every time. We can simply get more done with it, the battery lasts far longer, and the camera is superior… All other so-called smartphones pale in comparison to Apple’s iPhone 6 Plus.

Now, as for making the “4-inch iPhone 7” so clearly “last gen” with what will be an older A9 chip, no 3D Touch, etc… well, that doesn’t seem to be what our readers, at least, desire:

4-inch iPhone MacDailyNews poll

KGI: Apple to release new 4-inch iPhone in early 2016; A9-powered, but no 3D Touch – November 4, 2015
Why Apple might launch a new 4-inch iPhone in early 2016 – October 15, 2015
No 4-inch ‘iPhone 6c’ at Apple’s September 9 event, iPhone 5c to be discontinued – August 27, 2015
Should Apple make a state-of-the-art 4-inch iPhone? – July 31, 2015
Analyst: Apple has scrapped plans for a 4-inch iPhone 6c – July 27, 2015
Analyst: No 4-inch iPhone coming – May 12, 2015
If Apple makes a next-gen 4-inch iPhone, they should do it right, not make it a second class device – March 26, 2015


    1. I still have my iPhone 5 and only because I don’t want to give up the size. Have passed on my upgrades, given them to the spouse. The 5 is the perfect pocket size. I hate the larger ones, they don’t fit in clothing anywhere easily.

  1. “But, lay them both on our desk and we’ll grab the Plus when heading out every time.”

    You MND guys say this sort of thing all the time. It would be useful to us to explain where you carry these big phones.

    (Excluding purses) I am assuming you all wear pleated business slacks, or wear sport or suit jackets always. (In my mind’s eye I am envisioning polyester tricot leisure suits. Lime green with piping.) People mention shirt pockets, but I can’t imagine how that works. Simply, a 6 and especially a 6+ won’t fit in jeans. Unless you wear pleated mom jeans.

    Please dispel these images of MDNers from my mind. They are truly disconcerting!

    1. No sarcasm — I’d love to know the answer. If someone gave me a 6+ as a present, I’d sell it and buy a 6 or 5. For me, the 6+ is way too much hassle to carry.

    2. I disagree with your statement “Simply, a 6 and especially a 6+ won’t fit in jeans. Unless you wear pleated mom jeans.” I do NOT wear “pleated mom jeans” and I have no problem putting a 6 or 6s into my jeans and having it there throughout the day. I haven’t tried either Plus model as for me the phablet size is just too big — independent of whatever pocket I might choose to use.

      And, putting a 6 or 6s temporarily into a shirt pocket when I need to wear a suit is not an issue either even though I’d never have it there on a regular basis.

      1. The 5 is the perfect size. After hearing they may go back to offering a smaller size too, I think I’ll pass on my upgrade AGAIN and wait. Hope this is true.

      1. There are 2 6’s and a 6s plus in our house. I have tried to love them, and tried carrying them Somewhere. My issue is if I lay my phone down somewhere it will be there when I am 5 miles away and remember – after someone else owns it. So I wear a holster on my belt. The 6 holster impedes movement and gets caught on things just moving around. So that is a no for me. Putting it in the back pocket of jeans means I have to take it out and lay it down to sit anywhere. See above issue.

        I am seriously looking for answers and appreciate the above. (I do wish the MDNers would answer.) I can’t make sitting down with a 6x in my front jeans pocket work, without pain or it falling out. I have tried cargo pants but getting to my phone to answer it becomes a problem.

        1. It may not work for you. I am just saying it works fine for many of us.

          But it does sound like you are experimenting to find a solution. So some ideas:
          1. I personally find the 6+ at the limit of how large a phone can be for my front jeans pockets. I use the Apple leather case. If you are putting it in a massive case like an otter box, then front pocket may be less than optimal.
          2. Borrow one of those phones and do some new jeans shopping. If the brands you have been wearing are not compatible, then you get to decide where you want to compromise. Life is all about compromises.
          3. Try it for a couple weeks. Most things seem normal once your brain forgets to point out what is different to you. This one is key: I started with a 6. Then went to a 6+. It first seemed massive, but now my wife’s 6 seems tiny to me. Note that the 6 is extremely close to a 5 in terms of pocketability, the 6+ is quite doable but does approach the practical limit there.

        2. I wear cargo pants and keep my 6Plus in the top left front pocket, my S&W Airweight 38 (with shrouded hammer so it won’t get snagged) in my top right front pocket, and all of my other stuff in the cargo pockets (right rear for my wallet with carry permit). I have an Watch and, most of the time, forget I have the 6Plus and 38 until I take them out at night. If I need the 6Plus it’s easy to get out and put away. I wouldn’t have any smaller size ever again. It’s as portable as any phone I’ve ever had.

  2. That giant phone becomes less of an issue when you have an Apple watch to eliminate the constant consultation. When you have more to do, the big screen becomes a tremendous asset.

    1. Still have to carry the thing. I’ve been on bike rides with a friend where he has to have a backpack on just to carry his “mobile” phone!!! Gawd! Gimme a break! My 5S slips into the small pocket on my shorts with no problem.

  3. If anyone has paid attention to Apple’s pricing strategies over the years, it’s pretty obvious what they’re going to do…

    The 4.7″ iPhone 7 will not have a 16GB model, but only 64GB and 128GB, the base will also start at the current price for the 64GB version. A new 64GB 4″ iPhone 7 will start at the same price as the current 4.7″ iPhone 6s. This means they will no longer offer an entry model with low storage. The lower storage specs will be moved down the line to last years models.

    So next year’s line up will be…
    iPhone 7 mini 4″, 64GB $649, 128GB, $749
    iPhone 7 4.7″, 64GB $749, 128GB, $849
    iPhone 7 plus 5.5″, 64GB $849, 128GB, $949

    iPhone 6s 4.7″ 16GB $549, 64GB $649
    iPhone 6s plus 5.5″ 16GB $649, 64GB $749

    iPhone 6 4.7″ 16GB $449
    iPhone 6 plus 5.5″ 16GB $549

    Look at how the prices for each sized screen line up with no overlap.

    4.7″ from $449 – $849
    5.5″ from $549 – $949

    1. Yep, you totally nailed it. The only way I see prices being any different is if there is no 4″ or Apple pulls some sort of major surprise.

      And people are still going to be whining about the existence of a 16GB iPhone!

  4. Iphone 7 BS rumor … When the iPhone 6s is just out…

    Foe disguised as friend…
    The only reason for these rumors are to discourage prople from buying the present product.. And Kuo is playing the game..
    Sure adds to his credibility .. Doent it ?


  5. Hate to say it, but both the wife and I are old ben. Two generations old kids and grandkids.

    Now my better half is looking at a new iPhone. She has a 4S indwell unhappily move to a 6s – but would refer the size of the 4S so maybe Apple is finally considering a wise size for people with smaller hands.

    BTW, this little old lady also has an iPad and a MacBook Air so she really isn’t living hack in the 50s.

    Now all Apple has to do is to deliver the same quality displays, camera and other innards in all sizes.

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