According to Ming-Chi Kuo, an analyst with KGI Securities, but otherwise known as the most authoritative expert on Apple (and not without good reason, his predictions have been spot-on so far), a smaller version of the iPhone 6 may release in the first quarter of 2016.
It would feature the advanced A9 processor, which powers all the iPhone 6 variants, and also include an NFC chip plus Touch ID for Apple Pay. The most significant difference would be a 4-inch screen, similar to the one found on the iPhone 5s, but with a curved edge display. It would most likely feature an 8-megapixel camera at the rear and a 1.2-megapixel camera at the front, which are the same as those on the iPhone 5s. For the exterior, Kuo expects a metal casing in 2-3 colors, and an inside source at Foxconn, which manufactures the iPhones for Apple, says there are already five colors in production.
Kuo believes the phone will be priced in the $400-500 range, which is lower than the starting rates of $649 and $749 for the iPhone 6s and the iPhone 6s Plus, the latest in the table. He foresees that it will account for some 8-9% of next year’s iPhone sales, which still adds up to some 15-17 million smartphones. The iPhone 7 is set to be released in the second quarter of 2016, a first quarter release date for this ‘budget’ smartphone seems highly probable.
What Kuo refrains from is calling this phone the iPhone 6c- it is other Apple iPhone aficionados who have come up with that terminology, following in the lines of the 5c model name for the budget phone in the iPhone 5 series.