09/03 Update below. This post was originally published on September 1
Apple has already confirmed the iPhone 12 line-up will be delayed, but an exclusive new report has revealed that is only half the story.
Bloomberg dynamic duo Debby Wu and Mark Gurman, have confirmed that Apple will be forced to split the release of the new iPhone 12 range in two. This seemingly flies in the face of comments from Apple CFO Luca Maestri last month that the models would only be “a few weeks” late.
09/02 Update: long running Japanese leak site Mac Otakara has added detail to Bloomberg’s report, saying its sources believe the iPhone 12 launch will now happen in late October. The news has also been backed up by popular Apple tipster Jon Prosser, who has a 100% track record for Apple hardware launches in 2020. Prosser goes so far as to describe his confidence in this as “100%. Prosser has also previously claimed the range would have a split release, which means all sides now appear to be converging on Apple’s 2020 iPhone strategy. This may be somewhat different than normal, but the same can be said about the whole of 2020.
09/03 Update: Digitimes has added more color, quite literally, to the iPhone 12 launch. The popular site confirms Apple is “adding a dark blue model, for the first time, into the iPhone family products”. This was first tipped way back in January, but news of it had since gone quiet. Interestingly, Digitimes also cites updated in-house research, which claims Apple will ship up to 68 million iPhones in the second half of 2020. This is a 5M reduction on the same period last year, but still a remarkable number given the unprecedented challenges currently being faced by the Coronavirus pandemic worldwide. It also gives cause for optimism for sales of the new iPhone 12 line-up, despite new price increases.
Breaking this down, Wu and Gurman explain that Apple will launch the (super small) iPhone 12 and (renamed) iPhone 12 Plus first with the iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro Max rollouts “on course to be the latest since the release of the iPhone X in November 2017.” The duo say this is primarily due to the Coronavirus pandemic, though yield problems with their ProMotion displays (the feature is still in doubt) has also clearly been a factor.
So why would Maestri suggest the range was only delayed by a few weeks? My guess is semantics. Most likely, Maestri was referring to when the new models will be announced (still hotly disputed and muddied by Apple itself), rather than when they go on sale. But it is the latter, which everyone cares about.
That said, the delay is unlikely to be the biggest concern on iPhone 12 upgraders’ minds. Big wins such as their stylish new designs, (potentially) game-changing performance and asking prices (relatively speaking), have been tainted by Apple’s removal of accessories and decision to shrink their batteries.
For my money, the best value new iPhone will launch early next year but, for anyone still wavering between iPhone 12 entry-level and Pro models, momentum is fast moving to the iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Plus.
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