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launch 4-inch iPhone

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KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has released a new research report outlining his expectations for Apple’s 2016 iPhone launches, including several interesting tidbits about the upcoming devices.

First, Kuo believes that Apple is working on a 4-inch iPhone that “resembles an upgraded iPhone 5s.” He notes that since the iPhone 5s was more popular than the iPhone 5c, Apple has a greater chance of launching an upgraded version of the former. The upgraded iPhone 5s will come with a metal chassis, feature an A9 chip, and will be released sometime in the first half of 2016. This new iPhone will not come with 3D touch though — probably to keep its price down.

As there is still demand for a 4-inch iPhone, we believe Apple will upgrade this product line. Because the iPhone 5s is more popular than the iPhone 5c, we think Apple is likely to launch an upgraded iPhone 5s. We predict Apple will mass-produce this new 4-inch iPhone in 1H16 with metal casings. In order to make the current iOS 9 or next-generation iOS 10 run smoothly, Apple may adopt an A9 chip for this new phone.

As for the iPhone 7, Kuo expects it to be launched sometime in Q3 of 2016. The handset will come with a faster A10 chip, and Apple will likely differentiate between the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus by equipping them with different amount of RAM. While the iPhone 7 will come with 2GB RAM, the iPhone 7 Plus will feature 3GB RAM due to its higher resolution screen. The lower amount of RAM on the iPhone 7 will not affect its performance though, since it will also feature a lower resolution screen