Just last week, J.P. Morgan analysts released a few predictions about Apple’s roadmap and the possibility of Apple switching to a biannual release schedule. The highly-regarded Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo of TF Securities brings the same predictions as that previous report, along with new predictions about the next iPhone SE 2 and a high-end iPhone with no lightning port.
We wouldn’t see such an iPhone until 2021, but the prospect of removing the Lightning port would make for a “completely wireless experience”. Its speculated that Apple might remove the Lightning port only for the highest-end model in 2021.
It was long rumored that Apple might replace the Lighting port for USB-C as it has already done with its MacBook and iPad lineups, but Apple seems to prefer to remove the port altogether before switching the iPhone to the USB-C standard.
For 2020, Kuo expects a total of five iPhone models: one 6.7-inch high-end iPhone, two 6.1-inch iPhones (one high-end and one lower-tier), and one entry-level 5.4-inch iPhone, each of which would also have support for Sub-6GHz and/or mmWave 5G . Kuo also expects a new iPhone SE to be coming sometime in the first half of 2020. It is expected to have a 4.7-inch display and mimic the size and design of the iPhone 8 with updated internals, and an updated single camera.
Kuo has gone as far as predicting that another iPhone SE model would come in 2021, unofficially referred to as the “iPhone SE 2 Plus”. This device would feature a full-size display design with no home button with either a 5.5 or 6.1-inch display size. Such an iPhone wouldn’t feature face ID and depend on a Touch ID sensor embedded into the power key.
For 2020, a new iPhone SE would feature a single camera while the first couple of entry-tier iPhones use dual cameras and the top two tiers feature triple cam setups.
This report cites supply chain sources that are then interpreted by analysts to predict the kinds of hardware changes that Apple might make. While it would be nice to see five iPhones launch next year, we wonder how practical an iPhone with no ports would be. It would no longer be possible to connect a physical pair of headphones and depending on its implementation, it could be difficult to use the device while its charging – a wireless charger is inconvenient for portability and travel.
We’ve seen a fully port-less smartphone as the concept Meizu Zero. It has neither ports, buttons, nor a SIM slot. If Apple does decide to launch a port-less iPhone, we hope it comes up with a better excuse than “courage” for its reasoning.