What will the iPhone 6 look like? [Editorial]

As rumors of the iPhone 6 pick up pace, I’ve found myself becoming more and more confused as I ponder Apple’s next flagship smartphone.

The earliest rumors surrounding the iPhone 6, amongst other things claimed that Apple was in fact planning to release two fresh mobile devices later this year. One of these would be a 4.7-inch device, and the other would be a massive 5.5-inch iPhone/iPad love-child. Since those early mutterings however, it has come to my attention that the 5.5-inch device that many have spoken about doesn’t exist. It’s been claimed that the latter device has been delayed (intentionally or otherwise), so it may be true that rumors of the device are not making the rounds because the device isn’t as far on as its 4.7-inch counterpart, but the plethora of 4.7-inch device leaks concerning the next iPhone, and the distinct lack of 5.5-inch rumors leads me to believe that for the time being at least, we can only expect one, larger iPhone.

Now, every man and his dog is telling us that the next device will feature a larger, 4.7-inch display. As I noted in yesterday’s 3D printing story, that’s a massive step up from the current 4 inch form factor. Since the leak of some form factor drawings concerning this device, 4 separate mockups of the iPhone 6 have emerged, as well as 2 case leaks. I’ve listed those instances below, but the point I’m getting at is that a 4.7-inch device looks to be a certainty. Last year it seemed like every other tech blogger had an iPhone 5c before the wretched thing was announced, and it seems that this year may not be so different.

S0 with a 4.7-inch device seemingly a certainty, it remains to be determined what exactly the iPhone 6 will look like, and this question lies at the heart of my musings on the next iPhone. 
iphone_5s_5c
It all starts with the last iPhone, well, two iPhones. As you well know, last year Apple released the iPhone 5s and the iPhone 5c. 
With this move Apple launched a new flagship, premium device, and re-branded the previous iPhone in some awesome new colors. With 2 devices and 8 total colors to choose from, the choice of iPhone on release day was the greatest it had ever been, but it leaves some interesting questions concerning the next iPhone. 
If you checked out any of the links above, you’ll have noticed that all of the mockups and cases point to an iPhone 6 a little more reminiscent of the iPod touch, and indeed the iPhone 5c with its curved back and apparent plastic design. There have been leaks of a premium looking black device with a Space Grey rear, but also a dummy with a white rear face but the same black front. Of course, we can’t know for certain whether one of these devices, or indeed any of them, actually look anything like the iPhone 6. We can assume they’re a pretty close replication, but the question of the iPhone 6′s aesthetic design still remains. 
Bearing in mind last year’s activity, is it likely that Apple will follow suit, releasing 2 devices, one with a more premium look and feel? It doesn’t seem very “Apple-like” to introduce a brand new iPhone release model, and then scrap it the next year. It seems very unlikely that Apple too would release a new premium color, gold, as well as a handful of brighter colors, without a mind for the future. It seems very odd to me that we’re yet to encounter any rumors regarding 2 devices as we did last year, and it also strikes me as strange that mockups and dummys are neglecting the gold iPhone, or indeed any of the 5c colors. Could it be that rumor mill isn’t spinning at full power yet? Or does lack of rumor equal lack of device?
I cannot say that the rumors are wrong, and it may be that these other colors are yet to materialise. Indeed, all I can do is postulate, and there’s no need to take up a particular position on the notion. What I find more interesting is the discussion over where the iPhone is headed when we consider what has gone before, and what rumors are pointing too for the future. Which is where you come in. Will there be two iPhones aimed at different markets later this year? Will Apple stick to the aesthetic trend it started last year, or was this an irregularity in Apple’s release pattern? Should we expect Apple to follow last years color pattern, or come up with something totally different?
Leave all your thoughts and comments below, and also hit me up on Twitter @TiP_Stephen

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  • http://www.joshspadd.com/ Josh Hrach

    Part of me was wondering if the C-model will be updated every 2 years. So this year will be the iPhone 6, then next year we’ll see the 6s and 6c, with the 6c getting the 6′s specs. The s-line will be the top model, but the c will be the more colorful option.

    Of course, they could just upgrade both at the same time and keep each phone model improving each year.

    • Stephen Warwick

      This is interesting. So this year, do you think that Apple would keep the 5C going? Or would the 5S be the go to second tier device?

      • http://www.joshspadd.com/ Josh Hrach

        I see a few options.

        1: Move the 5C to the 4S position, bring down the 5s, and have the 6 be the top tier model. Lineup: 5c, 5s, 6.

        2: Upgrade the specs of the 5c to match the 5s, keep the 5c name, and retire the 5s in favor of the 6. Keep the 4S around just because it (presumably) is cheaper to make (though I’m a big believer in the 30-pin connector going away this year). Lineup: 4S, 5c (but upgraded), 6.

        3. If Apple is diversifying its phone line, I wonder if we could even see 2 different C-model phones, one with iPhone 5 specs, and the other with iPhone 5s specs. Then we’d see pricing similar to the iPads. $0->5c, $99-> 5cs; $99-> 5s, $199-> 6

        I think option three is coming eventually, but for now, I’m more inclined to believe in option 1 for this year.

  • Justin Carlson

    What seems most probable to me is that they would move the 5S into the 5C body (Not sure what they would call it) and release the 4.7 iPhone 6.

    • Stephen Warwick

      So a premium 6, and then the 5S get’s the same treatment as the 5 did last year? Another valid scenario.

      • Anthony Snyder

        Never thought of that… wow. Great idea.