Since Tuesday I’ve wondered about the iPhone naming. How could Apple make such a huge mistake, and how could they possibly fix it next year?
This morning in the shower it hit me. Apple doesn’t make mistakes like this. They wanted to do something special for the 10th anniversary (iPhone ten), but this is the last year of the iPhone versions we’ve become accustomed to.
Next year we should expect four versions of the iPhone – iPhone, iPhone Plus, iPhone Pro (replacing the iPhone X), and iPhone Mini (refreshing the iPhone SE). Taking a page from the automotive play book, these will be iPhone 2019.
Apple already versions their Mac hardware by year, so this is completely in line with existing practices, and they already use Mini and Pro as modifiers.
It also makes sense because it gives added encouragement to the style conscious (and affluent) to upgrade every year: no more subtle difference between 6 and 6s, no more mistaking iPhone 6 being one generation back from the 7 — just a clear unambiguous year to tell you how far out of date you are.
Why didn’t they move to yearly naming this year? Two guesses: they wanted to do an iPhone X, and they didn’t have the engineering staff to upgrade the iPhone SE with Qi charging with all the work that was going into iPhone X.
This is just a theory based on logic and intuition, with no inside information, but it makes sense to me.