The iPhone 6C, Apple’s heavily tipped follow up to its bestselling iPhone 5C, is back in the tech headlines this week after two contradictory rumours about the device emerged in the past 48 hours.
One, from leading tech watcher and renowned mobile tipster Evan Blass, claimed that Apple would be releasing the plastic, 4–inch screen handset alongside the new iPhone 6S and iPhone 6S Plus at its special event on September 9th.
However, another story seems to take Blass’s claims apart. Fiksu, a mobile app marketing platform, says it has seen references to two new iPhones in its logs, codenamed iPhone 8,1 and iPhone 8,2.
This is almost certainly referring to the iPhone 6S and iPhone 6S Plus. A third model has not been seen.
That leaves us once again with the likelihood that Apple will not be releasing a new plastic iPhone next month.
Previous reports have suggested Apple ditched plans for the handset earlier this year, with a new model now set for 2016 instead.
With that in mind, it looks more and more like Blass was wrong to call the iPhone 6C for next month.
Apple, after all, will still have the iPhone 5S in its arsenal and be able to sell 2013’s flagship at an even cheaper price point than it currently does.
It will also likely keep the iPhone 6 up for grabs for those who want a large screen option but don’t want the Force Touch–packing iPhone 6S.
Adding the 6C will merely lead to too many devices being on sale, something Apple actively avoids for fear of diluting its brand too much.
With no launch set for 2015, attention will doubtless turn to next year’s plans for a smaller iPhone. By then, the 5S and 5C will be three years old and past their best.
Surely then will be the time for Apple to strike with a new cheaper iPhone, using the tech found in the upcoming iPhones to give them an advantage over budget Android device makers.
Apple will have plenty to show off come September 9th. Adding a third iPhone to the mix will only serve to make it harder for it to stand out against a crowded backdrop of new top end smartphones, updated tablets and a new–look Apple TV.
Save it for next year, when new designs and better features will help Apple continue its domination of the mobile scene.