Apple working on bigger (and cheaper) 6.1-inch iPhone

Apple is working on three new iPhones this year, including a big-screen model that will be cheaper than the iPhone X, according to a new note from KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo.

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The tech giant is said to have plans to develop an iPhone that comes with a 6.1-inch TFT LCD display. That device will reportedly be the cheapest of the new Apple smartphones this year and will come with a design reminiscent of the iPhone X, featuring an edge-to-edge display and "notch" at the top of the screen.

However, according to Kuo, whose note was earlier reported on by AppleInsider, Apple will be hobbled to some degree by its use of LCD in the handset. For instance, the LCD panel will only allow for bezels as small as 0.5mm all around, which could be a bit thicker than those in the OLED-based models.

Aside from that, Apple is positioning the LCD model to be the cheapest of the options and will likely offer a single-cell rectangular battery in the handset. Apple transitioned to an L-shaped battery in the iPhone X to improve capacity and allow for more design opportunities and will keep that in the OLED options, according to the report.

Interestingly, Apple might also opt to ditch the 3D Touch features that allow you to vary how hard you press down on the screen to open different menus. The move could help Apple save some cash and keep the price down to an entry price of about $700, according to Kuo.

The 6.1-inch iPhone could be flanked by two other handsets: 5.8- and 6.5-inch OLED-based iPhones. They'll come with thinner bezels than the LCD model and will support 3D Touch, according to Kuo. They'll also be far more expensive and should come with the L-shaped batteries Apple brought to the iPhone X.

Despite the apparent advantages the OLED models could deliver over the LCD version, Kuo believes that 50 percent of Apple's manufacturing capacity this year will be dedicated to the LCD model, as customers search for a product that has a nice design and attractive price. 

Apple is expected to unveil its new iPhones in September. The devices will likely hit store shelves soon after.