The latest few months have brought us quite a lot of leaks and rumors about the next iPhone coming this year, but the most recent seem to point to a change that only a few people saw coming.

Apple is very unlikely to call this year’s iPhone the “iPhone 7,” as it appears that the company is planning to keep the name for the 2017 model that’s projected to bring bigger upgrades. The first to hint at such a possibility was famous leaker Evan Blass, and more sources have recently told us that there are 99 percent chances to see Apple adopting a different moniker than iPhone 7.

Unofficial information claims that Apple is very likely to use a variation of the iPhone 6 name for the next model, and we’ve heard that the company could go as far as to use the SE moniker for the upcoming generation too.

The iPhone SE was launched earlier this year as a way to refresh the 4-inch iPhone and give users who like smaller phones a reason to upgrade and get the latest hardware, so the same SE designation could be used for the upcoming models. This is still in the rumor stage, but if Apple indeed goes for this option, we could thus get the iPhone 6 SE and iPhone 6 Plus SE, instead of the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus, respectively.

Why it makes sense not to call it iPhone 7

There are two main reasons it doesn’t make sense for the upcoming model to be called iPhone 7.

First of all, it’s because the upgrades coming on this year’s model are similar to the ones that are typically part of the “S” overhaul. So while the device will indeed come with a dual-camera unit for the Plus and other upgrades here and there, the look will be very similar to the iPhone 6.

Typically, when Apple launches new iPhone generations, there are bigger differences in terms of designs as compared to the previous models, so it just makes sense for this year’s model, which will feature 99 percent the same look, to be part of the same iPhone 6 lineup.

And second of all, there’s the new 3-year major upgrade schedule that Apple is believed to be preparing. Apple wants to roll out big iPhone upgrades, including here new design and possibly form factors, every three years, and we’ve heard that this strategy is already adopted by the company.

This means that new models with big upgrades and a new name will be released every three years, while all devices launched in between will be part of the same lineup. As a result, seeing the upcoming model going live as an upgrade to the iPhone 6 seems to align to this strategy.

Certainly, there’s more to find out about the upcoming model, but everything seems to be pointing to Apple saving the iPhone 7 name for the next generation. This year’s iPhone will launch in September, and more information on its name is likely to surface in the coming weeks.

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