In his latest investor’s note, KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo says that the 6.1-inch 2018 iPhone with an LCD display will look similar to that of the existing iPhone X, but its lower price tag will make it accessible to more consumers.
The 2018 6.1-inch iPhone will feature a notch display design, and it is expected to cost around $699. To reach that price tag, Apple will be making a few compromises. Apart from the switch to an LCD display, the handset will also feature an aluminum frame instead of a stainless steel one. The device will also lack a dual-camera setup at its rear and 3D Touch.
Due to the lower price tag, Kuo expects this handset to be the most popular one in Apple’s iPhone lineup in 2018 and sell around 100 million units throughout its lifespan. The final price tag of the handset would depend on whether Apple sees the 6.1-inch 2018 iPhone as the successor to the iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus or not.
The analyst further reiterates his previous claim of Apple stopping the production of the iPhone X later this year once it unveils the 2018 iPhone lineup. Given that Apple plans on launching three new iPhones this year, it does make sense for the company to discontinue the 2017 iPhone X as there would be no place for it in its lineup.
In addition to a 6.1-inch model with an LCD display, Apple will also be launching a new refreshed iPhone X with upgraded internals and an iPhone X Plus with a 6.5-inch OLED display. All three phones will feature Face ID, a bezel-less look at the front and lack a home button.
It remains to be seen if Apple will make use of LCD displays in two of the models it plans on releasing in 2018 or only one of them. The lack of additional OLED suppliers in the market means Apple might face a supply crunch with OLED panels which might force it to change its plans and use OLED displays on only one of the three iPhones it plans on launching this year.