In a world that seems to equate bigger with better, Apple’s iPhone Mini series was a counter-narrative, a proverbial David in a market of Goliaths. But rumors are swirling that this pint-sized underdog may be on its way out, potentially following Apple’s “Wonderlust” event scheduled for Tuesday this week. The murmurings come after a three-year run of the device, which was initially celebrated as a champion of compact, high-quality smartphones.
The Life and Times of iPhone Mini
When Apple introduced the iPhone 12 Mini in 2020, it marked a return to form, at least in terms of size. The iPhone 13 Mini followed suit a year later. Both models brought back the nostalgia of a pocketable device without sacrificing the specs and performance expected of a modern smartphone. Priced at $599, the iPhone 13 Mini remained a budget-friendly option in the iPhone ecosystem.
Stock Indicators and Speculations
Reporting by Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman suggests that iPhone 13 Mini stock levels are dwindling. Apple’s online store in the U.S. shows shipping estimates ranging from 2-3 weeks for some models to as much as 6-8 weeks for others. Significantly, the iPhone 14 series did not include a Mini variant, keeping only the 13 Mini as a low-cost alternative. This fuelled speculations that Apple might soon retire the model entirely.
The Sales Dilemma
While the concept of a smaller iPhone seemed promising, sales data told a different story. According to CIRP, the iPhone 13 Mini accounted for only 3% of overall iPhone 13 sales in the U.S. in Q1 2022. For a company that aims for volume and market dominance, these numbers would hardly justify the continuation of a specialized model.
The Community Weighs In
The potential discontinuation has sparked a myriad of emotions among the Apple community. Fans of the Mini describe it as a “marvel of engineering,” praising its form factor and lamenting the loss of the last bastion of small-screen smartphones. Skeptics, however, point out the Mini’s limitations, such as lower battery life and fewer advanced camera features compared to its larger counterparts.
What’s Next for Small iPhone Lovers?
Customers desiring a smaller device may need to set their sights on the iPhone SE, although rumors suggest that even this budget model will be upsized to a 6.1-inch display in the coming years. It seems that the industry trend towards larger screens is unlikely to reverse any time soon.
The iPhone Mini’s potential exit may reveal a harsh truth about consumer preferences: in a battle between size and functionality, size loses. The future of small iPhones is uncertain, leaving fans to ponder whether they’ll need to adapt to a larger device or hold on to their Minis for as long as they can. But for now, if you’ve been eyeing an iPhone 13 Mini, it might be the time to make your move before the curtains close on this chapter of Apple’s storied history.