KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo issued a research note to investors claiming Apple will release a new 4-inch iPhone in early 2016. The note obtained by MacRumors says there is "still-existing demand for 4-inch smartphones," and that the rumored iPhone 6c will make up "8-9% of total iPhone shipments in 2016."
Apple may break tradition again and release an entry-level iPhone 6c to replace the discontinued iPhone 5c in February, according to the Chinese website TechWeb. Citing unnamed sources from Foxconn TechWeb claims Apple will announce the iPhone 6c in January then release the new device in February. The website also notes that Apple will ditch the “unapologetically plastic” casing of the iPhone 5c in favor of a metal body.
Next generation iPhone rumors are already flying, with heavy-hitting analysts starting to weigh in with their own research. As MacRumors reports, Ming-Chi Kuo at KGI securities expects Apple to release an updated 4-inch iPhone sometime in the first half of next year. This release schedule would be a departure for Apple, since the company has typically launched new iPhone models only once per year. Summer updates were replaced by fall product launches in recent years, with the iPhone 7 expected to debut in fall 2016.
Apple will release three iPhone 6 models in the second half of 2015, according to the DigiTimes. Unnamed "industry sources" claim that Apple will release a 4-inch iPhone 6c model alongside the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus later this year. All three models will come equipped with LTPS panels manufactured by Japan Display, Sharp and LG Display, NFC and Touch ID. The S-series models will also be powered by new A9 chips, while the smaller iPhone 6c will run on the same A8 chip found in the current iPhone 6 models, according to the report.
If true, the iPhone 6c will be the second iPhone released under Apple's "c" brand. The first was the iPhone 5c released in 2013. The DigiTimes' report makes no mention if the iPhone 6c will also be plastic like its predecessor, but it did mention that all new iPhone models "will come equipped with Corning Gorilla Glass".