If previous reports hold true, Apple will unveil its next-generation smartphone at a media event on Wednesday, September 12. It’s expected to feature a larger screen, and a number of other improvements.

In addition to the new handset, it’ll also be interesting to see what Apple does with the rest of its iPhone lineup. According to a new report, Apple Stores are starting to see very low stock of 3GS models…

9to5Mac has the scoop:

“Ahead of Apple’s likely September 12th iPhone-related media event, Apple has warned its retail store Genius Bars of low iPhone 3GS stock. According to a note sent to Genius Bar employees worldwide, “until further notice,” Genius Bars should perform the following for iPhone 3GSs: screen repairs, discuss the advantages of buying a new iPhone, and lastly, swapping out the full iPhone 3GS hardware…

…With supplies of the iPhone 3GS so low, Apple even tells employees to swap out affected 3GSs with an iPhone 4 replacement unit. That is if the particular store is completely out of the 3GS…”

This is interesting because Apple included the iPhone 3GS in its list of compatible iOS 6 handsets, leading some folks to believe it planned to keep it around. But the model is over three years old.

So what happens to the other devices if the 3GS disappears? The lineup could look something like this:

  • $199 – new iPhone
  • $99 – iPhone 4S
  • $0 – iPhone 4

Obviously, this is just speculation at this point. But where would the 3GS fit in if Apple followed previous trends and dropped the prices on its older handsets by $100? Maybe it could keep it around as an inexpensive prepaid option, or sell it unlocked on its website for two or three hundred dollars.

What do you think Apple will do with the iPhone 3GS?

  • What if the new iPhone “or the iPhone 5” needs parts from the 3Gs?

    • Johnathan Jennings

      I doubt there will be any hardware on the New iPhone that was present back in 2009. This is 2012 dude.

  • So the question is: How can I break my 3gs so that it will be covered by the warranty?

    • Kok Hean

      Leave it under the sun.

    • Say to him a lot of bad words, and the iPhone will try a suicide.

    • You might not get a i4 if the store has a stock of 3GS ..

    • Press all the buttons untill they stop working. Then you won’t do anything with the phone 😉

  • I’m sure we will hear an announcement on Monday

  • Wasnt there a report saying that Apple was going to use the iPhone 3GS for businesses? They’re probably going to stop publically selling them and only give them to businesses.

    • I think you will find that all businesses will want the newer devices .. Like we have at are place

  • Aaron Soderholm

    According to someone who was an Apple Genius (@iDannyOcean) they keep stock of old iPhones for a long time after they’re not sold anymore (you can still get an Apple HiFi replacement). So this doesn’t mean anything.

  • In only 14 400 minutes. The iPhone 5 will be relesed, and we will know 🙂

    • No more Obama

      how about now, how many more minutes

  • seyss

    the 3GS is important in 3rd world countries… where governments impose absurd taxes to cellphones

  • Still think this is a great design, I loved my iPhone 3GS and many of my friends still have one.

    • e40rich

      have you ever seen a retina display? no comparision. i hate the design.

  • The 3GS was a good iPhone. Even though it is old I think they should consider keeping it up for at least a little bit longer.

  • who cares about 3gs its old and out dated dual core is the new standard

  • WatchTheThrone

    They should re-release the 3GS with retina….that would be awesome!!!! 3GS’ design is the most comfortable phone to hold

  • The iPhone 3GS is like the Indestructable Nokia, just by Apple

  • Alec Vanek

    i bet it will be $275 unlocked and no longer sold on contract.

  • i doubt it sticks around unless the ipad mini is released and the ipod touch is dropped from production which i dont see happening

  • Iamjoeking

    I think it would be a shame if they discontinue it. I firmly believe that the 3GS is the workhorse of the iphone