Apple to release 4.7" and 5.5" 'iPhone 8' models, no 5" version for 2017

in iPhone edited October 2016
Contrary to reports on Wednesday claiming Apple intends to release three new iPhone models in 2017, including a middle-of-the-road 5-inch iteration, a source tells AppleInsider immediate plans are to stick with the usual 4.7-inch and 5.5-inch flagships.

Following a trend started with the iPhone 6 debut in 2014, Apple next year will unveil two -- and only two -- flagship iPhone models, according to person who has in the past provided accurate information on Apple's product pipeline. Like this year's iPhone 7 series, the 2017 iPhone will come in 4.7-inch and 5.5-inch sizes.

Current plans for "iPhone 8" include a "glass sandwich" chassis incorporating an AMOLED display, though fallback designs are also being explored, the person said. While initial structural tests on early prototypes appear to be promising, Apple is readying backup contingencies in parallel with primary development.

It is unclear to what material Apple might fall back in the event that the anticipated glass design is deemed unfit for production, though a return to aluminum seems an ideal choice.

A report from Nikkei earlier today claimed Apple is looking to market three iPhone models for the handset's big ten-year anniversary. In particular, supply chain sources intimated work on 4.7-, 5- and 5.5-inch display sizes.

It seems unlikely, however, that Apple would muddy its smartphone lineup by shoehorning a tweener model betwixt its two existing flagships. In terms of usability and features, there is arguably little benefit in moving up from 4.7 inches, or down from 5.5 inches, to a middle of the road 5-inch screen.

The 4.7-inch range remains a sweet spot for Apple, and historically accounts for a bulk of sales. The larger 5.5-inch model is gaining ground, with the dual-camera array found in iPhone 7 Plus proving enough of a differentiator to convert a portion of the 4.7-inch faithful.

As noted by Apple CEO Tim Cook on Tuesday during an earnings conference call on Tuesday, demand for the latest generation phablet is far outstripping supply. When asked whether iPhone supply would reach equilibrium by the end of the year, Cook was confident on iPhone 7, but less so for iPhone 7 Plus.

Perhaps more plausible for 2017 than a 5-inch "iPhone 8" is a refreshed iPhone SE. Apple created the 4-inch SE -- basically an iPhone 5s with modern guts -- to sate customer calls for a small format handset, a strategy borne out in strong unit sales. Announced in March, iPhone SE is a niche product not yet due for an update. As such, Apple could break from its traditional annual hardware refresh cycle and push back a second-gen SE to launch alongside its larger siblings next fall.


  • Reply 1 of 22
    Yeah, cuz duhhh. Am I right?  :p
  • Reply 2 of 22
    jbdragonjbdragon Posts: 2,288member
    That was such a DUMB RUMOR. Really a 5" versions??? DUMB!!!! Made zero sense as it's hardly bigger then 4.7"!!! That's a .3" difference. Why? On the other hand I could see Apple releasing a new 4" version as that's been a pretty big hit. So 4", 4.7" and 5.5".
    doozydozenbaconstang[Deleted User]80s_Apple_Guynetmage
  • Reply 3 of 22
    eriamjheriamjh Posts: 1,556member
    I think a 4, 4.7, 5.5" combo is a good strategy.   We just don't really need all the colors, but to each his own.   
  • Reply 4 of 22
    Thank god. What a horrible rumor that 3-model BS was.....
  • Reply 5 of 22
    Now all we have to do is backpedal on the fact that next years iPhone is not going to be a iPhone 8 but a iPhone 7s and realise that iPhone development is not spontaneous but takes time and any Rumors about a new iPhone 8 just might be a year to soon. It happened last year and the year before. The Question is credibility and if it is worth it loosing it reporting on the Same Shi....t earlier every year. Its sort of like being able to buy Christmas cookies in September but then again we can. But why do we keep quoting that Chines conman, he just uses buckshot and then claims he is a sniper.
    [Deleted User]lmagoonetmage
  • Reply 6 of 22
    Seemingly plausible:

    • iPhone SE gets "round" design as inspired by the 6.
    • Flagship iPhones lose bezel, overall size of phones reduced rather than increase the screen real estate
    • twin-cameras make their way to standard model - depth learnings from new "portrait" mode enable new AR software tech.

    edited October 2016 aylknetmage
  • Reply 7 of 22
    wood1208wood1208 Posts: 2,874member
    4.7" +. 4 = 5.1"+.4 = 5.5" + .4 = 5.9". The Point is when Home button moves under screen, basel becomes thinner, all glass front than apple have freedom for many sizes of iphone 8 because overall size of each iPhone gets smaller compared to iphone 7. In all new iphone 8 small footprint design, for example between 4.7" vs 5.1", I am sure 5.1" would be preferred by majority.  
    edited October 2016 aylkairbubblenetmage
  • Reply 8 of 22
    Thus 5 inch rumor passes by every year, right? I do really think they might celebrate 10 years with an 4 inch, or 3.5 inch design, as it could really be a strong comparison of them advertising 10 years in the same, or similar  body.
  • Reply 9 of 22
    rezwitsrezwits Posts: 868member
    who knows gees what a waist of time...
  • Reply 10 of 22
    designrdesignr Posts: 959member
    Both "betwixt" and "sate" in the same article? Bravo!  ;) 
  • Reply 11 of 22
    evilutionevilution Posts: 1,399member
    It'll probably be whatever size screen they can fit into the existing frame sizes but with no bezels.
  • Reply 12 of 22
    tshapitshapi Posts: 369member
    My theory is: a 4" model a 5" model and a 5.8" model. The .3 millimeters could be the curve in the glass... so a 4.7 could theoretically be a 5" with a curved display. 
    edited October 2016
  • Reply 13 of 22
    Damn it man! Let me enjoy my 7 Plus for a while!!
  • Reply 14 of 22
    tyler82tyler82 Posts: 1,088member
    designr said:
    Both "betwixt" and "sate" in the same article? Bravo!  ;) 
    If only the author threw in a "thrice"
  • Reply 15 of 22
    iqatedoiqatedo Posts: 1,812member
    The 8 will be quite something no doubt - looking forward to its debut. I was just now told by my service provider that the iPhone 7 Plus, 256 GB, jet black order that I placed last week and was told would be delivered today or tomorrow, was in fact a 'back order' and would be delivered no sooner than late November (although they have no actual time frame). Fine - except that the reason I was given was that "Apple deliberately limited supply". Wow, this is therefore their official position, a conspiracy theory.
  • Reply 16 of 22
    bluefire1bluefire1 Posts: 1,285member
    I expect Apple will  keep both the matte black and jet black options, but I hope the company considers equalizing what both phones offer instead of making the + not just bigger but higher end. 

  • Reply 17 of 22
    mike1mike1 Posts: 3,236member
    A 5" model is believable, but not 4.7" and 5". If they could shave of .3" of bezel, it is conceivable that the screen could grow to 5" while retaining the same overall size.
  • Reply 18 of 22
    bluefire1 said:
    I expect Apple will  keep both the matte black and jet black options, but I hope the company considers equalizing what both phones offer instead of making the + not just bigger but higher end. 

    Agreed. I have great difficulty with the company that told us 3.5 then 4 inch screens are the best size now making the 5.5 phablet the top tier and the "smaller" 4.7 inch the poor cousin.  Not happy with that at all.  

  • Reply 19 of 22
    igorskyigorsky Posts: 723member
    bluefire1 said:
    I expect Apple will  keep both the matte black and jet black options, but I hope the company considers equalizing what both phones offer instead of making the + not just bigger but higher end. 

    You realize that this is really about the size of the casing more than anything else, right?  You can simply fit more into a larger phone.
    edited October 2016
  • Reply 20 of 22
    fakebook johnfakebook john Posts: 1unconfirmed, member
    Apple already abandoned Steve's vision. Now they are doing a random chase of moving targets. Pathetic. A swipe to unlock a phone? Not any more. Simple to use? Forget it, just who needs simple? Laptops having various connectors built in? Who needs it when you can have one thunderbolt port, and then an extra hub next to your laptop, that gives all the ports you may ever need? Bloated UI? Sure, let's make iphone look as crappy as droid. Having a normal, non EM radiating headphones? Forget it, you shall use our microwave headphone system. I am sick of Apple.
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