What happened to iPhone 9?

iPhone 9

Over the years, Apple has released 38 iPhones. They have picked up the pace in the last few years. This makes it harder for casual consumers to keep track of new releases. However, one thing that everyone has noticed is that there’s a suspicious gap between iPhone 8 and iPhone X.

This has led many to wonder, what happened to iPhone 9? Why was it never released, and what went into this decision-making process? The truth is that there are many different explanations, some more logical and credible than others. So, let’s dive into it and find out.

10th Anniversary

iPhone X was released exactly ten years after the first iPhone. So, in a way, you can see it as not just Apple X but rather an iPhone anniversary edition. The crew behind the smartphone was enthusiastic about the anniversary, and they found this the best way to commemorate it. Seeing how the 10th anniversary was a huge deal, they didn’t want to miss out on the opportunity. Otherwise, they would have to wait ten more years for the new opportunity.

Changes Were too Significant (Allegedly)

Another explanation is that the changes were too significant. The developer team (or, more likely, the marketing team) believed the difference between the iPhone 8 and iPhone X to be too significant for a single number to do it justice.

The difference in the display (and resolution) was huge, and iPhone X came with Face ID instead of a touch sensor.

The truth is, however, that technical differences between iPhone 8 Plus and iPhone X were not that significant. One could hardly argue that iPhone X was faster than iPhone 8 Plus. Also, both devices are 4G phones rated 4G LTE cat12. If you’re wondering, “Why is the internet so slow on my phone?” and looking for a solution, switching from iPhone 8 Plus to iPhone X will not fix the issue.

Better for Marketing

Another possible factor is that iPhone X sounds better and is, therefore, more marketable. Sure, they would have gotten around to iPhone X next time, but this, combined with its 10th anniversary, probably played a role in decision-making.

Leap in Product Price

iPhone X is the first iPhone to exceed the $1,000 mark. Since then, the cost has gone significantly up, but in 2017 this was a huge deal. So, anxious about how this would go, the team decided to use every slight advantage they could get. As we’ve already mentioned, iPhone X sounds more marketable, so this might have been the edge they were looking for.

Superstition Related to iPhone 9

Number 9 has a negative connotation in Chinese and Japanese cultures. It’s the East-Asian equivalent of what the number 13 represents in Western culture. You may argue that this didn’t prevent Apple from releasing the iPhone 13 (which had some amazing features). With that in mind, it might be that this was:

  • Just one of the reasons
  • A convenient excuse
  • An experiment that showed no correlation

True, Android is predominant in the Asian market; however, this was an attempt of the team behind the iPhone to penetrate deeper into the Asian market.

Another explanation would be that people in tech seem to be superstitious regarding the number 9. At least that would explain why Windows 9 was skipped as well.

Wrap Up

We will never know for sure what led Apple to this decision. The truth may lie in something arbitrary or even random. Still, this is not a very likely scenario for a launch of such a massive and widely acclaimed device. The most likely explanation is that it’s a combination of the above-listed factors that have led to this decision.

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