Apple's 4-inch iPhone 6S 'mini' may have some familiar curves

Set to fatten up Apple's growing lineup

Apple might be prepping a third iPhone for 2015, one that will be welcome to anyone who finds the iPhone 6 too big - let alone the iPhone 6 Plus.

Once again, the claim is that Apple is preparing a 4-inch iPhone 6S. The word comes from Cowen and Company analyst Timothy Arcuri in a note obtained by Apple Insider, but the report suggests this is more than just guesswork.

Arcuri quoted his own sources, who have indicated that the 4-inch iPhone could be similar to the iPhone 5S but possibly with "curved screen edges" like the new iPhone 6 and 6 Plus.

Shrink ray

Arcuri's track record with Apple has been hit and miss, but this isn't the first we've heard about a possible 4-inch iPhone. The last rumour pointed to a launch in the second half of 2015, suggesting that we'll see it during the usual September event.

Apple bumped up the size of its phones with the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus. While it's kept the iPhone 5S in production, next year will likely see it phased out assuming Apple follows its usual trend.

That means Apple will either need to fill the sub-4.7-inch gap, or force all users to bigger handsets. While it'll mean a less simplified lineup, opting for the former option might be a wise move.