While competing smartphone manufacturers are producing devices in a whole host of different sizes, Apple’s iPhone has had only two screen sizes in its six-year history. But according to four sources with knowledge of Apple’s plans, who have been speaking to Reuters, the Cupertino company is “considering” iPhones with 4.7-inch and 5.7-inch displays.
It is also said to be working on a cheaper iPhone that will come in a range of different colors.
Tim Cook hinted at the possibility of a bigger iPhone during his interview at D11 back in May. He said that Apple has focused its energy on getting just one iPhone right since the device was launched in 2007, and that it hasn’t become confused by producing multiple lines.
But “that doesn’t shut off the future,” he added, before acknowledging that some consumers prefer bigger smartphone displays than those Apple is currently offering with the iPhone.
Now Apple is said to be discussing larger iPhones that could help it better compete with rivals like Samsung, which currently owns the “phablet” market with its Galaxy Note devices.
“Apple is looking at introducing at least two bigger iPhones next year – one with a 4.7-inch screen and one with a 5.7-inch screen,” Reuters reports. Sources claim that Apple has approached suppliers for larger screens, but they note it’s still unclear whether the company will actually ship a bigger device.
“They constantly change product specifications almost to the final moment, so you’re not really sure whether this is the final prototype,” one of them said.
A device Apple seems more likely to produce is a cheaper iPhone, which will give those with a tighter budget the chance to own a smartphone powered by iOS, and allow Apple to compete in emerging markets. According to Reuters, the device could cost just $99, and it could come in a range of 5-6 different colors.
It’s thought the cheaper iPhone will be made from plastic — much like the iPhone 3G and iPhone 3GS — with older internals that will help keep costs low. Apple is expected to launch this device alongside the iPhone 5S this fall.