Apple is reportedly developing three new iPhone models for 2018, and all of them will ship with edge-to-edge displays like the existing iPhone X. It’s the technology behind their screens that’ll be different, though. While two of them will have OLED panels, one of them is believed to have an LCD panel.
The report, which comes from Nikkei, seems to suggest Apple intends to keep at least one iPhone model next year at a more affordable price point.
Displays are important, but the Cupertino-based company has to make tradeoffs in order to keep a new iPhone accessible for everyone. That’s why the 6.1-inch model is expected to have an LCD panel. The 5.8-inch and 6.3-inch models, meanwhile, are going to boast Samsung-made OLED panels. Given the difference between their technologies, the small model might be missing curves despite having an edge-to-edge design. It’s much easier for an OLED panel to be curved, and the benefits there also include better color accuracy and brightness.
The iPhone sitting between the smallest and largest models could be made from a different material, too. A person familiar with Apple’s plans said the 6.1-inch model will “probably sport a metal back” and be “available in several colors.” Glass would remain for the other two models.
In 2017, Apple really cut down on colors. The iPhone 7 was sold in six colors at one point; however, the iPhone 8 and iPhone X combined come in just five colors. Consumers would definitely be happy to see the company bring back more choices next year, even if it’s for just one member of the trio.
Suppliers are already being lined up for the 2018-released iPhone lineup. Pegatron’s Casetek could become a first-time partner for the metal-friendly model. It’s already providing Apple with casings for the iPad line. The other two models would probably have casings made by Foxconn, Apple’s longtime partner who’s handled the iPhone X this year.
So there you have it. Apple could be releasing three iPhone X-like products in 2018, but one of them should be slightly watered down in order to maintain an attractive price.