Apple’s upcoming lower-cost 6.1-inch iPhone could be available in two models, one that includes a single SIM and a second that offers dual-SIM dual standby (DSDS) functionality, aka two physical SIM card slots, according to an investor’s note from KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo.
The dual-SIM version will be extremely convenient for customers who like to carry around multiple numbers in a single handset. This practice is often seen in developing markets. Kuo also remains positive on the sales outcome of this particular model. According to the analyst, the iPhone 9 could see 100 million to 120 million units sold between and third quarters of 2018 and 2019.
Mass production of the 6.1-inch LCD iPhone is estimated to begin some three to five weeks after Apple’s rumored OLED versions, due in part to the last-minute addition of DSDS. Reports earlier this week claim OLED panel production will start in May, with assembly to follow shortly thereafter. With a low price point and optional DSDS capability, Kuo believes the 6.1-inch iPhone is shaping up to be Apple’s most popular 2018 iPhone.
Apple is expected to launch three iPhone models this fall. Anchored by the 6.1-inch LCD version, the lineup is said to include two OLED models in a 5.8-inch “iPhone X 2” and larger 6.5-inch “iPhone X Plus.” Reports suggest Apple is looking to retain high margins by integrating mature hardware in the bottom rung iPhone, from less expensive LCD screens to Touch ID biometrics. This year’s top-tier OLED models are expected to carry over the more complex — and expensive — TrueDepth camera that powers Face ID on iPhone X. It mentions that the iPhone X generated five times more profit than the combined profits of 600 Android OEMS during the mentioned period.