Pre-Announcement Rumors: Design, Prices & Specs of the Upcoming iPhone Models

In 2017 Apple rolled out the iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, and the iPhone X, and it looks like a repeat performance is slated for September 12. Rumor has it that three new iPhones will be revealed this year during the September announcement. From rumors about upgraded CPUs to the possiblity of universal edge-to-edge displays, we've got you covered. We're updating this article with all the mockups, tech rumors, and specs we can find leading up to the announcement. Read on for what to expect for the three anticpated iPhone models.

Related: Apple Goes after the Education Market with Lower-Priced iPad & New Education Apps  

Quick Look: iPhone 2018 Rumors

Currently rumors seem to predict three new models of iPhone, all of which will feature:

  • TruDepth Camera
  • Face-Recognition
  • Edge-to-edge display  
  • Faster LTE
  • A12 bionic chip
  • Extended battery life
  • A LCD or OLED display

When Are the 2018 iPhones Coming Out?

We're anticipating that at least two of the three models will be available to order following the September 12th announcement, but rumour has it the lowest price point won't ship until later in the year. We've heard tell that there's been some difficulty with integrating LCD screens into what might be an SE version of the upgrades. If that's the case, then we don't expect the lower price point model to ship until closer to October. 

TrueDepth Camera & Face Recognition Means...

According to MacRumors, all three of the new iPhones are expected to have TrueDepth Camera and facial recognition capabilities. Apple may finally be phasing out Touch ID for new devices and moving to Face ID as its biometric security feature of choice.  

Edge-to-Edge Display

three new iphones

Image via iDrop News

The iPhone X was the first of Apple's cell phones to incorporate an edge-to-edge display; with the exception of the notorious notch, of course. This display style meant that the familiar Home button was eliminated, replaced by a new system of gestures and swipes. Bloomberg reports that all of the new iPhones expected to be offered this year will likely incorporate the edge-to-edge display and eliminate the Home button, signaling the end of this familiar feature in all future iPhones. 

Processor & RAM

The iPhone 8, 8 Plus, and X incorporate the A11 bionic chip with 64-bit architecture. All of the 2018 iPhone line are rumored to include A12 Processors. Cult of Mac speculates that the new processor will be based on improvements by TSMC, Apple's CPU manufacturer, to its processing chips. Potential upgrades may include better performance and longer battery life.

How Will the 2018 iPhones Differ?

9to5Mac first reported the news that the cheapest of the new iPhone Models would include an LCD as opposed to an OLED screen. Not only might this allow the smaller screen to be made at a lower price point, but the display itself would be more impact resistant than its SE predecessors. This information came to 9to5Mac via analyst Ming-Chi-Kuo of KGI Securities in April of this year.

Screen Size

iphone plus

Image via KGI Securities

Bloomberg has updated the rumor that a 6.5" OLED display is predicted for the top-of-the-line iPhone version this year, followed by the 6.1" LCD offering, and rounded out by a 5.8" OLED screen. As mentioned before, all three displays are expected to be edge-to-edge. While the LCD screen doesn't offer the crispest, brightest color display the way an OLED screen does, this year's LCD display is predicted to be even higher quality than that offered with the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus.

Battery Type

Metro UK reports that the new flaghsip iPhone may have 40 percent improved battery effiency over the iPhone X. This is due in part to the anticipated improvements in the A12 chip as well as the cases increased size. Larger iPhones mean more room for batteries; bigger batteries mean more time between charges. So how much bigger will the new iPhone batteries be, and how will that translate to charge times? Rumor has it that Apple will stick with the L-shaped, two-cell battery currently powering the iPhone X in its new, 5.8" and 6.1" models, but shift to a larger battery for the 6.5" offering. The larger battery should add up to 25 percent more capacity, increasing talk time from a possible 21 hours to around 27, internet browsing from 12 hours to 15, video viewing from 13 to 16 hours, and audio play time from 60 to 75 hours.  

One SIM Card or Two?

double sim card new iphone

Image via iDrop News

In addition to other rumors in this article, Bloomberg suggests that the two larger models may sport dual-SIM card slots. Some analysts, including the ubiquitous Ming Chi Kuo, agree that at least one of the 2018 iPhones will offer a dual-SIM upgrade. Mr. Kuo anticipates that the 6.1" LCD iPhone will include second-tier pricing for a double SIM tray upgrade; this would boost the price by around $100.   

What Will the Price Range Be for the 2018 iPhones?

The iPhone X caused more than a bit of sticker shock last year with its $1,000 starting price tag, but it doesn't look like Apple is planning to back away from higher end price points this year. Instead, the anticipated iPhone X Plus will likely cost even more; at this point, the best guess is between $1,100 and $1,300 for the base model. With the newest iPhone ringing in at a higher price, the next in line will more than likely receive a bump up as well, and cost around $1,000. That being said, Apple is still predicted to offer at least one more affordable iPhone this year; the 6.1" iPhone with LCD is rumored to have a starting price tag hovering between $550 and $650, or $650–$750 for the dual SIM card upgrade.

What New iPhone Features Would You Like to See?

ProMotion on the 6.5" iPhone

I'd love to see ProMotion, the dynamic refresh feature on the 2017 iPad, included in the 6.5" 2018 iPhone. ProMotion makes using the Apple Pencil really smooth on the iPad, so wouldn't it be great if we could use a stylus or even just a finger to write and draw clearly on Apple's biggest iPhone display ever? As well, ProMotion reduces power consumption and improves display quality by matching the refresh rate to the pace of content, an overall excellent battery-saving, display-improving, responsiveness feature. 

A Waterproof iPhone at Last

I'm not an underwater photographer, but I am notoriously rough on any device I own. A truly waterproof iPhone would be worth my money, especially if it could handle getting dropped in a watering can as has *ahem* happened in the past. Will this be the year of the waterproof iPhone, or will we have to wait a while longer?

More iPhone 2018 News to Come

We'll continue updating our rumors leading up to the September 12 announcement. In the meantime, feel free to drop a note in the comments about your predictions and wishes for the new iPhones!

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Author Details

Leanne Hays's picture

Author Details

Leanne Hays

Leanne Hays is a Feature Writer at iPhone Life, and has written hundreds of in-depth how-to and troubleshooting articles. She's a former Associate Editor for iPhone Life magazine, and has written for the Iowa Source, as well as web content for education marketing. Leanne has an associate's degree in education, with a focus on curriculum development, as well as a bachelor's degree in science. She has over nine years of experience with SEO, social media management, and web development and writing. Despite years of web work, Leanne is by no means an early adapter; she's only owned a smartphone for five years, which makes her highly sympathetic to the learning curve of new iPhone owners. She enjoys making reader's lives easier and putting her education experience to work by walking them through the most practical ways to use Apple devices, step-by-step.

In off-work hours, Leanne is a mother of two, homesteader, audiobook fanatic, musician, and learning enthusiast.