The iPhone X may not have garnered the sales that Apple was hoping for, but the Cupertino, California, company’s latest phone is by no means a failure. We loved it enough to name it one of our best products of 2017, and millions of Apple devotees have already taken the plunge — but even more have noted that the divisive “notch” design and the huge $1,000 price tag were enough to put them off buying the phone, with many opting for cheaper iPhones as a result.
But it’s still a shock that Apple may well be ditching the iPhone X in the summer of 2018. Apple Insider points to a research note from KGI Securities suggesting Apple will retire the flagship device ahead of a new cycle of iPhones in fall 2018. This would be the first time Apple has ever brought an iPhone to the end of its lifespan before a new product launch, instead of keeping it on as a cheaper model.
Focusing on China, KGI blames the design of the iPhone X for lackluster sales. Despite the iPhone X having the largest screen ever seen on an iPhone (5.8 inches compared with the 5.5-inch screen on the iPhone 8 Plus), KGI believes the notch at the top of the screen that houses the phone’s sensors has tricked many consumers into assuming that the phone has less usable real estate than a standard iPhone Plus model. Since scale isn’t obvious in most marketing materials, and most consumers would likely assume that the model with the “Plus” moniker is the largest available, this isn’t an unfair assessment to make.
Despite this possible setback, it’s highly likely that Apple will be looking to continue an iPhone X-style design with its next series of iPhones. Whether the notch will remain is up for debate (Apple had hoped it would become as iconic as the circular home button), but it’s fair to assume that the edge-to-edge design will remain. And regardless of how the iPhone X has performed, iPhone sales are still expected to continue strongly, with Apple well on the way to becoming the world’s first company valued at $1 trillion during the course of 2018.
Finally, it’s also worth noting that an early retirement of the iPhone X would essentially make it a limited edition run — somewhat fitting, since it was originally intended to commemorate the tenth birthday of the brand. Whether retirement rumor will boost sales remains to be seen, but if you’ve been pushed into buying one by this news, read out our iPhone X buying guide for the best way to buy your bezel-less beauty.