A photo of what could be the rear shell from the upcoming low-cost iPhone 5S/iPhone 6 surfaced on the internet this week, posted by Chinese site WeiPhone.
These parts could just be from the Chinese clone of an iPhone 5 rear shell, however, the appearance of a rounded rear microphone hole and rounded rear edges could mean it belongs to a next-generation handset. These features fall in line with some of the earlier claims made regarding the low-cost iPhone.
The low-cost iPhone 5S or iPhone 6 will be a mid-end device, according to a previous report.
J.P. Morgan analysts Gokul Hariharan and Mark Moskowitz recently spoke to AllThingsD about the low-cost model and stated that Apple will not use lower end components to build this new iPhone. Instead, Apple will take a different approach creating a mid-range device that is a bit cheaper than the regular iPhone.
The analysts stated that Apple's approach with this iPhone will be similer to its iPad Mini release as the company used older components that were top-of-the-line just one year prior to create a lower-cost device that could compete in that market. The iPad Mini also costs more than some of its fiercest competitors such as the Google Nexus 7 and Amazon Kindle Fire HD and still manages to sell strongly.
Hariharan and Moskowitz predict that the low-cost iPhone will cost between $350 and $400 without a contract. The iPhone normally starts at $650, making the new version $250 cheaper. On contract it might either end up being free or costing between $50 and $100, according to various analysts.
Samsung currently dominates the low-cost smartphone market and Apple has the potential to take 20-25 percent of its share in the next 12 months if the company prices its device in between $350 and $400, according to the analysts.