“When does a form factor die? When Adele shut her flip phone in ‘Hello,’ it was supposed to be a symbol of the past. Phones with physical QWERTY keyboards also seem to have mostly bitten the dust,” Sascha Segan writes for PC Magazine. “Now we can ask the question about smaller smartphones, too, and we may see Apple offer up the answer early next year.”
It’s rumored that “Apple intends to replace the iPhone 5c with a small, A9-powered ‘6c’ or ‘7c’ in [early 2016],” Segan writes. “As phones get bigger, I’ve been hearing complaints from many readers and friends—primarily women in urban areas, who want to use their phones in one, smaller-sized hand—that current premium Android phones are just too big. Those people flock to Apple’s iPhone 6 line, which at 2.64 inches is the narrowest premium smartphone out there right now.”
“A $499 iPhone would indeed create pressure on a burgeoning new category of competing semi-premium, mid-sized smartphones, probably limiting them to $400 or lower,” Segan writes. “But more than a pricing game, I’m interested in seeing this as a real test to see if there’s still a market for high-quality, smaller smartphones. While there are still a whole bunch of 4 to 4.5-inch smartphones in the market—especially globally—they’re generally super cheap, and bought because of price rather than quality. An Apple phone changes that equation.”
Read more in the full article here.
MacDailyNews Take: Well, we know that an unapologetically plastic 4-inch iPhone with old technology didn’t exactly take the market by storm (but it was no “flop,” either), but there might be a decent enough market for a high-quality, state-of-the-art 4-incher from Apple.
If KGI Securities’ analyst Ming-Chi Kuoo is correct about this 4-inch “iPhone 6c” lacking 3D Touch it could temper response to the device. Of course, such a situation could also spur potential buyers to simply upgrade to the iPhone 6s to get 3D Touch (and a better camera and a larger screen), depending on how the pricing is structured.
In March, we ran the following poll regarding a 4-inch iPhone and found:
Rumor: Apple will be unveiling the 4-inch iPhone 7c next September, not an ‘iPhone 6c’ in February – December 4, 2015
Analyst: Apple’s new 4-inch iPhone will feature state-of-the-art A9 chip, launch in early 2016 – December 3, 2015
Rumor: Apple to launch 4-inch iPhone 6c with colorful metal cases in February 2016 – December 1, 2015
Apple’s forthcoming 4-inch iPhone to be powered by Apple A8 SoC, sources say – November 17, 2015
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