A cheap iPhone 12 is coming – but there's a catch

An affordable iPhone 12 model has leaked – but you'll struggle to get one this year

Apple new iPhone 12
(Image credit: Jonas Daehnert)

For months now the layout of the iPhone 12 landscape was thought to be very clear – there's going to be four different models of the new iPhone launched.

Starting with a compact 5.4-inch iPhone 12, the range then includes a 6.1-inch iPhone 12 Max, a 6.1-inch iPhone 12 Pro, and finally a super-sized iPhone 12 Pro Max.

Now, though, it looks like a cheap fifth iPhone 12 is going to be added to the list.

The news of the mysterious fifth device comes courtesy of Business Insider, who spotted information in a Wedbush Securities report that suggests a cheap 4G-only iPhone 12 will come out in early 2021.

The fifth iPhone 12 will be cheaper due to its lack of 5G connectivity, being only able to connect to 4G LTE mobile networks.

In terms of pricing the report indicates that this LTE-only iPhone 12 could retail for around the $800 mark. Hardly cheap then in the grand scheme of things, but certainly cheaper than a 5G iPhone 12 equivalent.

Will the lack of 5G turn off many iPhone users? Here at T3 we're guessing not. For many people 5G networks are still a thing of the future, with roll out to anywhere other than densely packed urban areas still months if not years away from realisation.

The ability therefore to bag the latest iPhone for cheaper, and technically not lose anything in terms of functionality (as, after all, if you don't live in a 5G area then you aren't able to use a 5G connection), will no doubt appeal to many.

And especially so considering that the launch dates of the 5G iPhone 12s look like they have slipped to even later in 2020, something which makes the wait until early 2021 even easier to stomach for those looking for a quality, non-5G upgrade.

What will the new iPhone 12 look like? This new video gives us our clearest look yet:

Robert Jones

Rob has been writing about computing, gaming, mobile, home entertainment technology, toys (specifically Lego and board games), smart home and more for over 15 years. As the editor of PC Gamer, and former Deputy Editor for T3.com, you can find Rob's work in magazines, bookazines and online, as well as on podcasts and videos, too. Outside of his work Rob is passionate about motorbikes, skiing/snowboarding and team sports, with football and cricket his two favourites.