iPhone 17 Slim sounds fine, but Apple, where is my mini?

iPhone 17 Slim sounds fine, but Apple, where is my mini?
These days, reports about Apple working on a new iPhone model are popping up like crazy. Not too long ago, we mentioned that Apple might introduce an iPhone 17 Slim to replace the Plus model. Now, there is a new report saying that the 2025 iPhone Slim will not only be a premium model, probably priced even above the Pro Max, but it'll also have a new design.

This sleek device might be powered by Apple’s homegrown A19 chip and could feature a screen size somewhere between the 6.1-inch standard iPhone display and the 6.7-inch Pro Max screen. Actually, rumors suggest it will be 6.6 inches, and as the name hints, it'll be a lot slimmer than current iPhones. Sounds cool, right? But honestly, I am not that excited. All I want to ask is: Apple, where is my mini?

When I first heard about a new iPhone model in the iPhone 17 series, I was really hoping it would be an iPhone 17 mini. But nope, no such luck. The trend of bigger screens is going strong, and it seems like most people dig it. However, not everyone wants a big screen or a big phone sticking out of their pocket all the time. Count me in that group!

So, let's dive into why the mini is no more and if there is any hope of it making a comeback.

It all started with the iPhone 12 mini and ended just a year later with the iPhone 13 mini

Apple first introduced the iPhone mini with the iPhone 12 series. Then, a year later, the company rolled out the iPhone 13 mini, the last model sporting a 5.4-inch display. I have been using it for three years now, and honestly, I am not keen on upsizing. I am sure there are plenty of people who feel the same way. But apparently, we are not enough.

With the iPhone 14 series, Apple replaced the mini with the Plus model, a behemoth with a 6.7-inch display matching the size of the iPhone 14 Pro Max. On paper, the difference is glaring, but in reality, it is downright comical. My trusty iPhone mini next to the iPhone 14 Plus looks like its pint-sized sidekick.

I've always wondered why Apple axed the mini when it has got larger-display models. There is no straight answer from the company, but the reason might be in the sales numbers.

For starters, sales data from 2020-2021 revealed that the iPhone 12 mini was the runt of the litter in terms of popularity. The iPhone 13 mini fared marginally better, capturing only 4% of the iPhone 13 series sales in its debut year.

Now, why is that you may wonder?

Well, there could be a couple of reasons why the iPhone mini didn't quite hit the mark and why Apple doesn't seem keen on giving it another shot. For starters, when the first mini hit the scene, Apple also dropped an iPhone SE, which likely stole some thunder from the iPhone 12 mini by being $300 cheaper.

Then there is the battery life issue, particularly with the iPhone 12 mini. Apple addressed this in the next generation, but you know how it goes – once a reputation is set, it is tough to shake.

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And, of course, let's not forget about screen size. For folks like me who aren't glued to games, social media, or video binges on their phones, a smaller size is no biggie. But I get it – most of us use our devices for exactly those things. And when it comes to gaming and videos, bigger is usually better.

Now, as I mentioned earlier, I have been rolling with the iPhone 13 mini for three years and I intend to keep using it until it is no longer supported, beat up, or just doesn't make sense anymore. Sure, I want to dive into all the new features, AI capabilities, and camera upgrades, but for now, size seems to be the deciding factor.

How much time do iPhone 13 mini enthusiasts have?

Well, if you are anything like me and you are holding onto your iPhone 13 mini for dear life, the best-case scenario gives us about 4 more years of bliss. That means Apple will probably keep rolling out iOS updates until roughly 2026-2028. Typically, Apple extends security updates for a bit longer than OS updates, so we might still get security patches for another 1-2 years after the OS updates end.

But then what? Well, it looks like we will have to make a choice: either switch to something larger or hunt down another elusive small smartphone. And let me tell you, those are hard to come by these days. While I am not opposed to jumping ship to Android, the options are pretty limited. Apart from the Asus Zenfone 10, Android phones seem to be getting bigger and bigger, too.

Personally, I think it would be fantastic if Apple decides to bless us with a new mini model. Maybe not every year, since that wouldn't make sense with the low sales numbers, but at least once every 3 or 4 years, similar to the release schedule of the iPhone SE models.

While there is no mini model in the supposed Apple roadmap shared a couple of months ago, it only goes up until 2027. So, let's keep our fingers crossed that an iPhone 18 mini makes an appearance in the tech giant's future plans.

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