Apple’s iPhone update in the autumn of 2018 could see three or even four new iPhones launched at the same time, and fans can’t wait to hear the announcements.
In this article we look at all the rumours concerning the successor to the iPhone X, and the expected larger iPhone X Plus (which a new report thinks will have triple rear-facing camera lenses): their release date, prices, design changes, tech specs and new features. There are also rumours that Apple will be introducing a new LCD model that will look like the iPhone X, but come at an entry-level price.
We’ve got the latest leaked photos, leaked design schematics, and a source predicting that this LCD model will be available in blue, yellow and pink. (But probably not purple and green.)
We also think Apple is likely to update the iPhone SE soon, so we have a separate article addressing iPhone SE 2 rumours – although that model may be phased out in favour of the rumoured LCD model.
For advice related to the current lineup, read our iPhone buying guide and roundup of the best iPhone deals.
What will the new iPhones be called?
Here are some of the possibilities:
- iPhone 9 and iPhone 9 Plus (for the successors to the iPhone 8 models)
- iPhone 11 and 11 Plus (aka iPhone XI and XI Plus)
- iPhone Xs and Xs Plus
- iPhone X Plus (to join the existing iPhone X)
- Or just plain iPhone and iPhone Plus
There are enough potential names for the new 2018 iPhone that we could probably write a whole article just about that! Tell us what you think in the poll below.
Release date for the new iPhones
We expect the successor(s) to the iPhones 8, 8 Plus and X to be unveiled in September 2018. This would be one year after the iPhone 8 launched, and is in line with Apple’s usual habit (at least since the iPhone 4) of launching a new flagship iPhone every September.
In 2017 the company didn’t launch all of its new iPhones at the same time: the iPhone X arrived one month after the 8 and 8 Plus. (Whether this was intentional isn’t completely clear.) But, despite claims from a Korean report in June 2018 that a cheaper model will arrive in November, we don’t expect there will be a staggered launch in autumn 2018.
KGI analyst Ming-Chi Kuo believes Apple’s focus this year will be to ensure all the new models are ready to meet the same shipping date. “Achieving stable shipments and on-time shipping” will be the company’s aim, he said in a research note back in October 2017.
And in March 2018 the Taiwanese site DigiTimes, citing “sources from Taiwan-based IC design houses”, predicted that Apple would begin production earlier than usual – in Q2 – in order to avoid the stock bottlenecks it suffered in 2017.
How many new iPhones will Apple launch in 2018?
Initial reports indicated that three new iPhones would be announced in autumn 2018; although, reports in January 2018 suggested the company could launch four new handsets this year.
Back in November 2017 Ming-Chi Kuo predicted that three new models would launch in autumn 2018, and that these would have the same all-screen design with the now-familiar notch. In January he followed up with more details of each model:
- 5.8in OLED: iPhone 11 or XI, with largely same design as iPhone X
- 6.5in OLED: iPhone X Plus or XI Plus
- 6.1in LCD: a cheaper alternative – starting at around $700 – with the notch design of the X but slightly larger bezels. It will feature Face ID but not 3D Touch and won’t have twin camera lenses on the rear; Kuo later predicted that this model could sell 100 million units. This new device is possibly codenamed Star.
We’ve since heard a number of slightly different predictions. Nikkei, citing “a source privy to the company’s product designs”, said we should expect two new OLED models, in 6.3in (rather than 6.5in) and 5.8in sizes, and an LCD phone measuring 6.1in.
However, if Apple was considering a 6.3in handset, it appears to have reverted to 6.5in if screen protectors from Olixar are designed according to the correct dimensions (and Olixar has a good track record with such things). In June 2018, three screen protectors were ‘leaked’ by the company which suggested dimensions of 5.8in, 6.5in, and a 6.1in screen and a slightly thicker bezel.
But there may even be a fourth new iPhone… According to DigiTimes Research senior analyst Luke Lin in January 2018, there will be four new iPhones, including an additional smaller handset (perhaps the successor to the iPhone SE).