After skipping over the 'iPhone 7s', and introducing the 8 alongside the X last year, Apple may be looking to simplify iPhone branding in 2018 and onward. This, according to a Robert Cihra investor note obtained by AppleInsider.
This move wouldn't be anything new for Apple, or the tech industry as a whole, as the iPad has already undergone a similar branding change. Apple's iPad range began with numbered iterations, but the latest addition has simply gone back to the "iPad."
"We think Apple may use this upcoming cycle to formally change its iPhone naming/branding pattern," the Guggenheim analyst wrote in the investor note. According to Cihra, the upcoming "mid-market LCD-based iPhone" will simply be called the "iPhone", while the premium model will retain the "X" suffix to differentiate it from the rest.
Such a decision could be a double-edged sword, as it could help simplify naming schemes for new devices, but it could also be confusing for the end consumer in the long term, making differentiating between models harder.
The investor note also reveals that analysts believe that a plus-sized premium model this generation could remedy 2017's notable omission of a larger iPhone X model. Apple is rumored to be working on three iPhone models for 2018 – an affordable 6.1-inch LCD model, and two higher-spec'd OLED models in 5.8-inch and 6.5-inch sizes.