KGI Analyst Ming-Chi Kuo Sheds Light On 6.1-Inch iPhone And iPhone X Plus
Today, KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has shared a trio of new investor notes, which outlines both new and existing predictions about the new iPhone X, iPhone X Plus, and a lower-priced 6.1-inch iPhone that is expected later this year.
For the most part, Kuo is basically reiterating what he has said in the past - pointing to an iPhone lineup this year consisting of two new iPhones with OLED displays, and one new iPhone that has an LCD screen installed. However, the research notes have some interesting news for Apple fans.
Battery, iPhone X Successor And iPhone X Plus
We have some words on the iPhone X successor and the oft-rumored iPhone X Plus. According to Kuo, the second-generation iPhone X and a larger 6.5-inch version we are calling iPhone X Plus will each have an increased 4GB of RAM.
Unsurprisingly, given its larger physical size, the iPhone X Plus is also expected to have up to a 25 percent larger battery capacity compared to iPhone X. Kuo says that the 6.5-inch OLED model will pack an battery between 3,3000 and 3,400mAh, with supplier Unimicron acting as the leading producer.
Meanwhile, the 5.8-inch OLED iPhone is said to include a 2,700 to 2,800mAh battery, again supplied primarily by Unimicron. For comparison's sake, it does not sound like this year's 5.8-inch OLED iPhone will have a larger battery than the iPhone X, which packs a 2,716mAh L-shaped battery design.
Both the new iPhone X models will have a two-cell, L-shaped battery design, similar to what Apple introduced in the iPhone X. Compared to a single-cell, the two-cell L-shaped design provides up to 10 percent additional power.
For the 6.1-inch LCD model, Kuo predicts a 2,850 to 2,950mAh battery in rectangular shape. This is larger than the iPhone 8 Plus battery, though it features the same rectangular and single-cell design, which does not necessarily bode well for thickness and weight.
As far as the 6.1-inch iPhone is concerned, which will be the model with the LCD screen if his sources are correct, it will have a design that is reminiscent of the iPhone X's minimized bezels, and it will not have a physical Home button. It will be equipped with the TrueDepth camera system and boast Face ID. The battery inside will be a rectangular design and be single-cell, with a capacity between 2850 and 2950mAh.
The 6.1-inch iPhone will cost between $700 and $800, based on Kuo's estimations. As for a release schedule, Kuo predicts that the 6.1-inch iPhone faces a "slightly deferment of the development schedule", but that all three models should be ready for market by September.
In addition, Kuo points out that Japan Display will be supplying about 70 percent of the LCD panel in the upcoming handset. Rumor has it that Apple will be adopting a Full Active LCD panel for the upcoming smartphone. Meanwhile, suppliers Foxconn, Pegatron, and Winston will be the key assemblers for the 6.1-inch iPhone this year.
Kuo writes that the "lower-than-expected" iPhone X shipments are due primarily to the high price of the device, thus making the 6.1-inch LCD model attractive to customers. The LCD iPhone is expected to feature the same notch design as the iPhone X, as well as Face ID, but will lack 3D Touch and a rear dual-camera system.
By the sounds of it, the new iPhone X and iPhone X Plus, beyond the latter's larger screen size, will not be significant upgrades. Kuo does not expect improvements to be made to the TrueDepth camera system until 2019. Nevertheless, he expects the devices to sell well, especially the lower-priced 6.1-inch iPhone.
Of all the rumors and reports we have seen so far, this KGI report seems to paint the most believable picture. It looks like Apple is going to try to weed out LCD panels from its lineup, and putting it on a cheaper model, even one with a 6.1-inch display, and relying on two new OLED iPhone X units to lead the way. It will be interesting to see where the price points are in 2018, especially with older iPhones in the mix and the expectation that Apple is going to launch an iPhone SE 2 this year as well.