The new iPhone 14 arrives sometime this fall—speculation of an iPhone 14 release date is that the phones will appear in September—meaning you’ll have a choice of new Apple smartphones in just a few months.
But to make room for the four new models we expect Apple to release, some current iPhones will likely disappear from Apple’s lineup. This includes some of the best iPhones you can buy right now.
Apple’s playbook in recent years has been to keep some older models at discount prices as a way to entice shoppers who refuse to pay the full cost of a brand-new iPhone. This could be critical this time around because some new phones, specifically the iPhone 14 Pro models, may see higher prices than their iPhone 13 counterparts.
If you’re familiar with Apple, you know that the company doesn’t reveal anything about its future product plans, until the moment it’s ready to announce new phones. That hasn’t changed with this year’s iPhone 14 release buildup, and the rumor mill has been quiet about the iPhone lineup Apple plans other than the iPhone 14 models. But we’re expecting a slight spike in rumors just before the iPhone 14 launch.
In the meantime, we can review Apple’s recent history to make some guesses as to which phones are likely to stay discounted and which might be hard to find in the fall. Here’s what we think Apple’s future iPhone lineup will look like once the iPhone 14 arrives.
Apple’s current iPhone lineup
Before we get started with what Apple’s launch plans will be after the iPhone 14, let’s review what Apple’s current phone offerings look like. We’re limiting this to devices currently on sale at Apple, along with their starting prices. Additional old iPhones may be available at select retailers and phone companies, but we’re only considering what Apple has on sale.
That’s a total of eight models, with only one version – iPhone SE (2022) released in the last calendar year.
iPhone 14: What models are coming in the fall
Rumors have informed us of the new models Apple is working on as part of this year’s iPhone release. We’re expecting four new phones – the iPhone 14, iPhone 14 Pro, iPhone 14 Pro Max and iPhone 14 Max. The first three models will have the same screen sizes as their iPhone 13 counterparts, although the Pro versions can ditch the iPhone’s famous notch in the cutouts that house the front camera and Face ID sensors.
This fourth phone, the iPhone 14 Max, will be a new model for Apple. It’s expected to include a 6.7-inch screen like the iPhone 14 Pro Max, but its other features — the number of cameras, available storage, design and processor used — are rumored to mirror the iPhone 14 standard. (We have a comparison between the iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Max that looks at all the potential differences. Note that one rumor claims that the phone will be called the iPhone 14 Plus to avoid confusion with the iPhone 14 Pro Max.
The inclusion of the iPhone 14 Max meant the end of the compact iPhone line, which was part of the iPhone 13 and iPhone 12 lineup; Both iPhone mini devices released by Apple are still on sale. Although Apple doesn’t break down sales numbers by model, the mini has been reported to be Apple’s least popular iPhone, which may explain why it isn’t stable in the iPhone 14 release. The reported lack of sales may also affect the Apple’s decision on which models will remain a part of its phone lineup in the post-iPhone 14 world.
It’s also important to keep in mind the iPhone 14 pricing rumors when trying to figure out what current phones Apple might keep. While it is possible that Apple will try to keep prices as they were on the iPhone 13, emerging rumors suggest that only the standard iPhone 14 will retain the price of its iPhone 13 counterpart. As a larger phone, the iPhone 14 Max could feature a price of 899 dollars.
That could drive up the price of the iPhone 14 Pro models, as Apple looks to maintain a gap between the prices of the standard and Pro models. At the moment, the general assumption is that the iPhone 14 Pro models will see their prices rise $100 more than the current ones – $1,099 for the iPhone 14 Pro and $1,199 for the iPhone 14 Pro Max.
What current iPhone models could disappear from Apple’s lineup?
Assuming rumors of four new iPhone 14 models circulate, we can expect Apple to scale back its current iPhone lineup to make room for the latest phones. Any phones that break sales of the new iPhone 14s are likely to be the firsts of their kind.
This means that the iPhone 13 Pro and iPhone 13 Pro Max are probably living on downtime. Since the iPhone launched with the Pro and Pro Max models in the iPhone lineup in 2019, it hasn’t held either version for more than a year. The iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max – pioneers of the Pro/Pro Max naming convention – were also left out of the lineup once the iPhone 11 launched.
Apple rarely keeps phones longer than three years after their release date. The iPhone 11, unveiled in September 2019, is fast approaching its sale date, so it’s a safe bet that it was taken out of the lineup this fall.
What current iPhone models is Apple likely to keep?
Apple has consistently kept the standard iPhone it introduced the previous year, bringing its price down by $100. That’s what happened to the iPhone 11 when the iPhone 12 debuted, and the iPhone 12 met a similar fate last fall. That’s why we think the 6.1-inch iPhone 13 is almost certain once the iPhone 14 debuts.
The typical $100 price cut would be particularly appropriate for the iPhone 13, as there is no iPhone 14 mini to accommodate the $699 pricing slot. So it would make sense for the iPhone 13 to fill that space as a better next option for shoppers who can’t swing the $799 iPhone 14 likely to order.
If Apple thinks it can get another year of sales of the iPhone 12, it can keep that phone, too. The iPhone 12 has already seen a drop from its first price of $799 to $699. If this phone lasts — and Apple’s previous behavior suggested it will — we’re expecting a new $599 price tag for the iPhone 12 in the fall.
That leaves the iPhone 13 and iPhone 12 mini — and some complicated questions about what Apple does with those phones. If you think neither model sold particularly well, there’s no incentive for Apple to keep either, unless it’s to liquidate any unsold inventory.
Then again, dropping both minis from the lineup would leave Apple a huge gap between the iPhone 12 with its potential $599 price tag and the $429 iPhone SE, which isn’t going anywhere. If Apple is keen to offer a $499 phone, any of the remaining two mini models can fill that slot. The iPhone 12 mini feels like a more natural progression, as $499 is just a $100 drop from its current price. But if the mini sales are as lukewarm as we’ve heard, throwing away the $200 off the iPhone 13 mini will definitely cost this model to carry over.
The fates of the iPhone 12 mini and iPhone 13 mini are probably the biggest outstanding question about the current iPhone models that are likely to survive the fall. If we had to guess, we’d say that the recently released iPhone 13 mini appears to be the most obvious candidate to survive, but it will require a bigger price cut than usual to match Apple’s current pricing structure.
Fall iPhone lineup predictions
It’s a fun guessing game trying to figure out Apple’s fall phone lineup, but there’s a practical reason to know which phones will still be around once the iPhone 14 arrives. If you’re currently thinking about buying an iPhone with an existing model that has caught your eye, waiting a few months could mean you’ll be able to buy the same phone. , but at a lower price, assuming its Apple segment is longer-range plans.
On the contrary, if this phone is likely to come out of the picture, in the fall, you’d better make the purchase now, even at the current price. (The best iPhone 13 deals can help you save money on your next phone purchase.)
There’s another plus to waiting until fall to buy an iPhone – you can also see if the rumored improvements to the iPhone 14 are really worth it for you. That way, you have a greater selection of iPhone options, no matter what phones make up Apple’s fall lineup.