• Tue. Aug 16th, 2022

There’s some debate over the name of the next iPhone

Jan 30, 2021

Weve mostly been referring to Apples next numbered iPhone as the iPhone 13, but is that actually what it will launch as? Given that it follows the iPhone 12, it would make sense for it to, but there are a couple of reasons why it might not.
Below, well look at what those reasons are, what Apple might call the next major iPhone instead (with iPhone 12S being the most likely alternative option but not the only one), and what the rumors say so far.
Well also consider how likely an alternative name actually is, and as soon as we hear anything else about the name, well be sure to update this piece.
An inconsistent pattern
So why might Apple not call its next major phone the iPhone 13? One reason is that it sometimes follows up a numbered model with an ‘S version. For example, the iPhone 6 was followed by the iPhone 6S.
But thats not a pattern Apple always sticks to, and in fact the last ‘S model was the iPhone XS so the iPhone 12 followed the iPhone 11, with no iPhone 11S in between.
So if Apple continues with what its been doing for the last couple of years then we can expect the iPhone 13, but if it goes back to using an ‘S then well likely get the iPhone 12S.
Unlucky number
Another reason Apple might not go for the number 13 is that its seen as an unlucky number in many parts of the world, including Apples home market of the US.
Of course, calling the next phone the iPhone 12S wouldnt entirely solve this problem because Apple would still then be up to 13 the following year.
We might get an ‘S’ version of the iPhone 12 (Image credit: TechRadar)
What do the rumors say?
The earliest rumors about the next main iPhone largely referred to it as the iPhone 13, but its not clear whether the sources had heard that would be the name or were just assuming it would be, and more recently a few sources have specifically said it will be called the iPhone 12S.
For example, Bloomberg reports that engineers inside Apple consider the upcoming model to be an ‘S version, though that doesnt necessarily mean it would launch with ‘S in the name.
Jon Prosser, a leaker with a reasonable track record, has also suggested that the next model will be called the iPhone 12S, as have GizChina and DigiTimes.
Ross Young a display industry expert whos accurately leaked things in the past also refers to the upcoming phones as the iPhone 12S range, though notes that hes “not sure” whether that will be the final name.
Notably, no sources at the time of writing have specifically come out and said that the phones will be called the iPhone 13, so based on the evidence at the moment, iPhone 12S is actually looking more likely.
Whats in a name?
Its worth noting that if Apple does choose to call its next iPhone the iPhone 12S, this wont have been done at random, and could in fact signal that the next model will be a relatively minor update thats not worthy of a new number.
Thats speculation for now, especially as its still early days for iPhone 13 rumors, but its something to bear in mind, especially as early rumors do suggest the design might be similar to the iPhone 12s.
Could Apple pick a completely different name?
Its possible. As noted above, calling the next model the iPhone 12S doesnt solve the problem of 13 being unlucky, it just delays the issue by a year. So Apple might skip straight to iPhone 14, or use some new naming convention, but so far theres no suggestion that it will, so wed say this is unlikely.