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According to a new report, Apple might be getting ready to release an iPhone 4 with 8GB of internal storage to be sold along the iPhone 5 when the company updates its iPhone line, which is expected to happen some time in the coming months.

As of now, the iPhone 4 sold is sold in two models, at least in the United States: a 16GB one for $199 and a 32GB one for $299, with a contract with either Verizon or AT&T. The available storage options have been the same ever since the iPhone 4 first became available last year, yet it now seems that Apple is retrofitting the current iPhone to be sold  to customers who might not be willing to spend $199 by compromising on the storage, which would allegedly be bumped down to 8GB. It’s no secret that flash storage is often what drives the price of portable devices: perhaps cutting down the size of the flash memory could easily mark $100 off the price of the lowest-end iPhone 4, the 16 GB one.

According to Bonnie Chang, analyst at Yuanta Securities, a lower-end iPhone will allow apple to reach a market segment of less technical deal-savvy customers, especially in emerging markets, who might not be willing to spend $200 on a smartphone:

Apple may want to push into the emerging market segment where customers want to switch to low- to mid-end smartphones from high-end feature phones, which usually cost $150-200,

Currently, Apple’s solution for low-end markets is the 2-year-old iPhone 3GS, which indeed comes with 8 GB of storage. Previously, it was believed that the company would replace it with a whole new iPhone model altogether, but this reports suggests that the Cupertino company might simply discontinue the iPhone 3GS and replace it with the iPhone 4, which in turn will be replaced by the iPhone 5.

The iPhone 5 will be the mainstream iPhone model, which has been rumored for months. According to this report, and confirmed by many before it, the new iPhone will have a larger screen, a better antenna and an 8-megapixel camera, as opposed to the iPhone 4′s 5-megapixel one. Overall, however, this source doesn’t expect major visual changes in this new device when compared to the iPhone 4.

The next iPhone is expected to be announced next month at Apple’s media event and rumored to become available in late September or early October.

(via Reuters)

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