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Apple Insider Reveals Surprise New iPhone 12 Pro Release

Apple’s iPhone 12 release plans were already complicated, with four new models arriving in two stages. But now the release of a compelling fifth iPhone 12 model has been revealed. 

According to a new report seen by Business Insider, Apple is planning to release a cheaper, 4G-only version of the iPhone 12 in addition to its 5G line-up. Moreover, the report stems from Wedbush Securities, an analyst firm with a perfect recent track record

08/13 Update: Apple's iPhone 12 release plans have taken another twist. iPhone camera lens maker GSEO has contradicted claims from acclaimed Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo last week, that the iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Plus models would be further delayed due to quality control issues with their lenses. Kuo claimed the protective coatings GSEO uses had been failing humidity and temperature tests, but in a statement to Digitimes GSEO said "production is still running without issues, and demand from its brand handset clients remains normal." Apple has already confirmed the iPhone 12 range will have a delayed release, but the news from GSEO suggests we shouldn't expect any further hold-ups.

08/14 Update: Bloomberg has revealed the iPhone 12 launch is set to bring a surprise with it in the name of 'Apple One'. Bloomberg's Apple sleuth Mark Gurman reveals Apple is keen to compete more aggressively with Amazon's Prime service and will offer a range of bundles services at discount prices. These are made up of a base tier (Apple Music + Apple TV+), midrange packages (Music, TV+ and Apple Arcade gaming) as well as more expensive options that add Apple News+ and/or additional iCloud storage. A variant centered around fitness is also planned. While Apple is expected to make the announcement with the iPhone 12 launch, Gurman says Apple One will roll out as part of iOS 14, which means devices as old as the iPhone 6S (2015) will have access. With services increasingly driving Apple's growth, the launch of Apple One is a no brainer.

"Price points will be aggressive as Apple goes after their broader customer base," Wedbush analyst Daniel Ives told Business Insider. "Especially in a recession, in a COVID-19 backdrop, they need to make sure they're hitting all price categories."

$800 is the price point Ives says Apple is aiming for with its 4G iPhone 12, presumably a variant of the iPhone 12 Pro, given the iPhone 12 and (recently renamed) iPhone 12 Plus will already retail at $699 and $799 respectively. While far from cheap, $800 would represent a $200 saving on the 5G edition of the iPhone 12 Pro and, with 5G coverage still limited around the world, it would surely have plenty of buyers if positioned as a Pro phone at a Plus price. 

That said, Apple knows how not to cannibalize its own sales and Wedbush says this 4G iPhone 12 will not go on sale until “early 2021”, a timeframe that would enable the company to capitalize on the Christmas period. This is crucial because, not only is this Apple’s biggest sales period of the year, but it will also be slightly shorter than normal for the 5G iPhone 12 lineup after Apple CFO Luca Maestri confirmed their release will be delayed. 

Customers holding out for a 4G iPhone 12 will also have their resolve tested by the 5G models which will be first to debut new designs, radical camera tech, and a potential multi-generation performance jump. That said, given concerns about their smaller battery capacities, waiting for their cheaper, long-lasting, 4G stable mate might just be the smart move. 

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