Reliable Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has said that Apple plans to ship the iPhone 12 without headphones or a charger brick in the box. Kuo had previously predicted the absence of EarPods, but if the iPhone ships without a charger it’ll certainly ruffle a few feathers and would be a first in the phone industry.
According to 9to5Mac, Kuo said that Apple may be considering this in order to keep the base iPhone 12 at the same price as the $699/£729 iPhone 11 but that 5G component costs in the new phone have driven up price. By leaving out the headphones and charger, Apple can hit a price point. It’s unclear if there is to be a Lightning cable in the box.
It’s likely that Apple would try and spin such as a move as environmentally friendly and claim that many people already have an iPhone charger. But not many people will have Apple fast chargers, and some first time buyers will have to stump up the extra cash for a charger of any kind if the rumours are true.
Kuo added that he expects Apple to produce a new 20W charger that will replace the small 5W brick and the 18W brick that currently only ships with the iPhone 11 Pro - though he says it'll ship with the rumoured new iPads and not the iPhone 12.
iPhones are certainly fairly ubiquitous in the US market but for the rest of the world it’ll jar if the iPhone 12 ships with no charger. It’s also unclear if the 12 Pro will have a charger in the box, but if it does then it’ll look like a charger is a luxury accessory.
But given the volume of iPhones shifted, there are surely also a lot of unused chargers sitting in drawers around the world, something Apple may be looking to address by making them an add-on purchase.