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Leak suggests 16GB iPhone 7 is dead

The idea of the 16GB iPhone 7 isn’t exactly a turnon to most Apple fans, but many are willing to endure it if they’ll be able to get their hands on Apple’s next-generation iPhone come next month. We’ve already heard that Apple could kill off the 16GB iPhone, but it was merely a rumor will little backing. Now, however, we have our first tangible proof that Apple may very well not release a 16GB iPhone 7 at all this year.

The source is Twitter member The Malignant, who leaked OnePlus 3 photos just days before its unveiling as well as the red OnePlus 3 variant that the leakster noted before the company realized it had been exposed and took it down. OnePlus went on record as saying that there wouldn’t be a red variant this year, but at least The Malignant has been reliable with his information. In that, he joins the ranks of LlabTooFeR, @evleaks (Evan Blass of VentureBeat), @OnLeaks, and others.

The Malignant took to Twitter again to post on August 24th the following message: “#iPhone 7 purported internal NAND components sheet seems to confirm 32/128/256GB storages. Supplier is Toshiba?”

16GB iPhone 7 missing component sheet

Now, we’re not surprised to see Toshiba as the supplier of NAND flash storage for iPhones; Toshiba served as a NAND flash storage supplier for Apple devices in the past, such as the fourth-generation iPod Touch and iPad 2, the iPhone 6s Plus and iPhone 6s (Apple dual-sourced its NAND flash last year), as well as the iPhone 3GS, and the most recent Apple smartphone, the iPhone SE. Apple has been looking to SK Hynix, Toshiba, and Samsung for its NAND flash storage but could very well return to Toshiba for the iPhone 7 due to issues with its own NAND flash in last year’s iPhone 6s and 6s Plus. Toshiba will likely become the supplier for the next-generation iPhone, though the company won’t be in charge of NAND flash storage for a 16GB iPhone 7 model.

What is surprising, however, is to see that Apple is only looking to offer 32GB, 128GB, and 256GB storage models for the iPhone 7. Apple has been offering 16GB, 64GB, and 128GB iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus variants, having done away with the 32GB storage model over two years ago. Now, in an attempt to get consumers to upgrade to the 128GB storage model, Apple is eliminating the 64GB storage model and the 16GB iPhone 7 in the hopes of getting consumers to spend even more money. And to make matters worse? The 256GB model is also in store for iPhone 7 customers — a claim that was given some credibility with an earlier rumor.

The 16GB iPhone 7 would, as has been the case with 16GB iPhones past and present, be an insult to Apple consumers who pay a pretty penny to pick up Apple’s latest. Cupertino unveiled the iPhone 6 Plus two years ago and mandated that consumers pay $749 for a 16GB model (while other consumers for other companies pay $749 for 32GB of minimum internal storage). Starting in 2015, Samsung increased the base storage for all its high-end “Galaxies”: the Galaxy S6, Galaxy S6 edge, and the Galaxy S6 edge+. The Korean giant had already made the Galaxy Note lineup a 32GB-minimum device, but decided to double the internal storage in this year’s Galaxy Note 7 from 32GB to 64GB.

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