Trusted analyst says 6.1-inch iPhone could be surprisingly cheap

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iphone x
The 6.1-inch iPhone rumored for this fall will have an LCD screen, but otherwise resemble a larger iPhone X.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

Speculation about the 2018 iPhone is running hot and heavy. It seems there are new reports on these unannounced devices almost every day. But not all of these carry the gravitas of Ming-Chi Kuo, an analyst with a long track record of being right about Apple.

So when Kuo says a 2018 iPhone with a 6.2-inch display could cost between $550 and $650, people take notice. Previous reports had pointed to a price range $100 higher

The KGI Securities analyst’s prediction appears to be predicated on Apple releasing two versions of this model: one with dual-SIM dual standby (DSDS), and the other with the traditional single SIM.

Kuo’s note to investors said, “6.1” LCD iPhone may have model that supports DSDS. If the 6.1″ LCD iPhone comes with DSDS and single-SIM models, we believe it will result in two benefits: (1) more price segments would be created, significantly boosting shipments via the low-price single-SIM model. For instance, if the DSDS model sells for US$650-750, the single-SIM model may sell for US$550-650; and (2) the DSDS model will help increase market share in China and commercial markets.”

We already know that many customers are bypassing Apple’s most powerful models and choosing to go with its more affordable phones. A $550 iPhone would appeal strongly to this group.

How low will it go?

But this might not be the cheapest 2018 iPhone. The Eurasian Economic Commission just granted its permission for Apple to release several new models in the May to June time period. Speculation indicates these will be the various iterations of an iPhone SE.

The original SE debuted in 2016 at $400. The successor is rumored to be $450, and somewhat similar to the current model. Wireless charging might be added though, as well as a faster processor.

2018 iPhone Xs Too

Assuming the iPhone SE comes out in spring, the 6.1-inch iPhone is expected to be the least expensive of the smartphones Apple will announce this fall, even if it doesn’t make Kuo’s price target.

Also supposedly on the docket is an updated version of the iPhone X which will have a 5.8-inch OLED screen and a price around $899. A model sometimes called the iPhone Xs Plus will cost $999 and have a 6.5-inch OLED screen.