The iPhone 6C, Apple’s oft–rumoured four–inch take on its bestselling smartphone, has reportedly been canned before it could even get an official release.
Analyst Timothy Arcuri, from Cowen and Company, has claimed that he has supply-chain evidence to suggest Apple was working on the smaller version of the iPhone 6, featuring the same design but in a smaller frame.
The device was set to replace the outgoing iPhone 5C, the so–called budget iPhone that was mocked at launch in 2013.
uSwitch sales show, however, it has gone on to become one of Apple’s bestsellers in the past two years. Networks still offer impressively cheap iPhone 5C deals.
It’s all left some wondering whether the iPhone 6C would have filled the void?
For his part, Arcuri reckons Apple didn’t want to upset the frankly absurdly high sales figures of the iPhone 6, which is likely to continue to be available at a discounted rate once Apple launches its new iPhones in the autumn.
From that perspective, it makes sense. But what about those who prefer the smaller screen experience? Anecdotally at least, there appear to be many.
Well, that’s where the iPhone 5S comes in. The 2013 flagship while most likely still be up for grabs through official Apple channels come September.
The company tends to sell the previous two years’ devices after it launches a new range.
That means the iPhone 5S will probably slide into the budget category in place of the 5c, with no colourful plastic edition in the lineup.
That will only be a loss to younger users, surely.
Fast forward to 2016 though and Apple has a problem. By the end of next year, the iPhone 5S will be creaking and showing its age.
Perhaps it’s holding back any new four–inch iPhone for next year, when it will likely refresh the design of the entire range, bringing a singular design language across smaller, regular and larger devices.
Either way, it seems unlikely that Apple will go into the busy pre–Christmas season without a four–inch iPhone available.
The larger iPhone 6 Plus was massively outsold by the regular iPhone 6 and apparently the iPhone 5C too.
Losing a key area of the market wouldn’t make sense for Apple, especially with investors demanding more and more as it continues to deliver record sales figures and profits.
All will be revealed in the autumn. But surely there’s no need to mourn an iPhone that for all intents and purposes never existed.