Last year, we had Apple’s first foray into a dual-release iPhone, with the premium iPhone 5S sharing the stage with the mid-priced iPhone 5C. Well, we all know how that little experiment turned out — while for years the iPhone rumor mill had clamored for such a release event, in the end, Tim Cook’s gambit to supercharge iPhone sales with double the iPhone goodness was an epic fail.
However, according to the latest rumors, Apple is set to try the dual-release strategy all over again — this time with screen sizes.
The latest rumors of course deal obsessively with the notion that Cupertino is seriously ready to start mass-producing two different iPhone 6 models — one with a 4.7-inch screen, and another 5.5-inch version — which, depending on who you listen to, may or may not debut in the same year. According to a Mac Rumors piece from the 9th, the 4-.7-inch screened iPhone 6 will see major ramping up of production by July for a release in the fall. The phablet-sized iPhone 6 is purportedly slated to begin production in September, and may or may not be released in 2014 — more likely 2015. The evidence of all of this is tenuous, as it always is: “Internal documents from the second ongoing trial between Apple and Samsung also indicate that Apple is poised to release a larger phone, as a slide deck from an April 2013 presentation showed that customers want less expensive and most notably, larger screen smartphones.”
The prevailing logic is that Apple will indeed increase the iPhone 6′s display size, but to what degree will remain a mystery — at least until production ramps up and photos begin leaking. However, whether or not Apple would once again risk trumping it’s own iPhone 6 with it’s other own iPhone remains to be seen.
If consumers have the notion that the 4.7-inch iPhone 6 is going to get outdone by the lager 5.5-inch iPhone 6 a few months down the line, who in their right mind will settle for the former iPhone? Moreover, how many average iPhone users go shopping for smartphones based on screen size? For iPhone users, not many, especially considering that the legacy iPhones are all being phased out.
What is more likely is that we’ll see Apple choose one of these two models, and put all of their R&D into making it a major success — something that the still-successful but recently embattled tech giant desperately needs. From a purely production standpoint, two iPhone 6 models means double the manufacturing resources. It just doesn’t add up.
For my money, I would expect to see the 4.7-inch model. Apple in my opinion will seek to avoid making an iPhone 6 with a 5.5-inch display that risks being derivative of its competitors in the Android market. Look for Apple to keep the iPhone’s defining specs — but a bit longer and a tad wider.