KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo is on a roll this morning with a litany of reports pertaining to Apple’s next-generation 2017 iPhone refresh. According to another note issued to clients this morning, a copy of which was obtained by AppleInsider, Kuo says he expects the Cupertino firm to slash prices of both 4.7 and 5.5-inch iPhone models next year.
That’s because those iPhones are expected to continue using legacy LCD technology. By lowering prices for those models, Apple might potentially regain some of the market share lost to more affordable Android handsets.
The analyst believes that Apple’s 4.7-inch iPhone model next year may become a new mid-range or even low-end model for the company. Assuming Apple slashes the price of LCD iPhones in 2017, Kuo projected the 4.7-inch device to account for between 30 and 35 percent of new-model iPhone shipments in fiscal year 2017.
Apple may also lower prices for the 5.5-inch iPhone SKUs next year, Kuo said. However, that device could find itself in something of an “awkward position” between the 4.7-inch model on the low end of the pricing spectrum and OLED iPhones on the high end.
The analysts expects 2017’s 4.7 and 5.5-inch LCD iPhones to be sold as ‘iPhone 7s’ and ‘iPhone 7s Plus’, while the flagship OLED iPhone may earn an ‘iPhone 8’ moniker.
Supply chain sources indicated to Kuo that Foxconn will be the primary manufacturer of the new OLED iPhone, while Pegatron is believed to become the exclusive supplier of the 4.7-inch LCD model. A large chunk of manufacturing of the 5.5-inch “iPhone 7s” is expected to fall to Wistron, but Kuo believes that model will only account for between 10 and 15 percent of new iPhone shipments next year.
Kuo also issued a pair of additional reports to clients this morning.
In one of them, he predicts fast wireless charging capability and an all-glass casing for all 2017 iPhones. The other report alleges that the iPhone 8 will enter mass production late in the third quarter of 2017.
In addition to the 4.7 and 5.5-inch models, Apple’s 2017 iPhone lineup is expected to feature a new flagship model with a curved edge-to-edge screen based on power-sipping OLED or AMOLED technology. The device may use an in-screen Touch ID sensor, as well as front-facing FaceTime camera and the earpiece embedded into the screen itself, potentially enabling a completely seamless full-screen iPhone design.