Apple might move back to metal for one iPhone 9 model

The iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus and iPhone X all have glass backs, having moved away from the metal rears of past generations, but according to a source at least one of 2018’s models might switch back to a metal rear.

Speaking to Nikkei, the source, who’s apparently “privy to the company’s product designs”, said that Apple will launch a 6.1-inch LCD phone that will “probably” have a metal back available in several colors.

It would seem an odd move, as the switch to glass was in large part to allow for wireless charging, a feature which might be sacrificed if Apple moves back to metal, but then given its LCD screen this would likely be a relatively budget model.

Bringing metal back

Alongside this metal-backed iPhone, the source claims Apple is tentatively planning two new OLED handsets, one of which would be around 5.8 inches (like the iPhone X, which is currently Apple’s only OLED phone) and one of roughly 6.3 inches. These presumably would stick with a glass back.

So far, most iPhone 9 rumors only talk about two handsets, both of which are said to have OLED screens, but it would make sense for Apple to also offer a lower-end, more affordable model.

Maybe this metal-backed iPhone will essentially be the iPhone SE 2, though that could mean Apple no longer offered any phones with small screens.

This far out from launch though we’d take this – and any – iPhone 9 rumor with a huge pinch of salt, so don’t count on it happening.

Via 9to5Mac

James Rogerson

James is a freelance phones, tablets and wearables writer and sub-editor at TechRadar. He has a love for everything ‘smart’, from watches to lights, and can often be found arguing with AI assistants or drowning in the latest apps. James also contributes to, and and has written for T3, Digital Camera World, Clarity Media and others, with work on the web, in print and on TV.