Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman is adding to mounting expectations that Apple will release three new iPhones this coming September: an upgraded iPhone X, a larger version of that upgraded iPhone X, and a cheaper iPhone that will pair the X’s slim-bezeled screen design with an LCD display.
All three will use Face ID for authentication, marking an end to Touch ID in new iPhone products.
Gurman reports that the Plus-sized version of the X will have a screen that measures “close to 6.5 inches.” (The current iPhone X is 5.8 inches.) Apple is testing prototypes of the larger model with a display resolution of 2688 x 1242. That larger canvas will likely result in Apple bringing over some of the split-view software features from “Plus” iPhones, the report says.
The bigger iPhone X will feature the same core design elements as last year’s hardware, including an OLED screen and stainless steel sides. Apple is said to be working on a gold color for the new devices as an additional choice beyond the black and white/silver options of the X. (Bloomberg notes that Apple originally aimed to ship a gold iPhone X last year, but canceled those plans due to production issues.)
The LCD iPhone is expected to look very much like an iPhone X and will include Face ID and slimmer bezels. But it will feature an aluminum frame instead of stainless steel. KGI’s Ming-Chi Kuo has estimated that this device will be priced between $700 and $800. That’s far from cheap, but it’s a couple hundred less than the iPhone X’s starting price. Bloomberg doesn’t mention the display size, but Kuo has predicted it will be around 6.1 inches.
Apple is also exploring the idea of adding dual-SIM support to the largest upcoming iPhone, though Gurman cautions that this might not pan out if the company chooses to continue working towards implementing eSIM technology in the iPhone. eSIM allows devices to connect to cellular data networks without inserting a traditional, carrier-provided SIM card. Google’s Pixel 2 phones utilize eSIM for Project Fi customers.