For quite some time, it’s been rumored that this year’s iPhone is going to have two tiers with noticeably different industrial designs. From Mac Rumors:

Japanese site Mac Otakara believes the iPhone 8 might actually be called the “iPhone Edition,” after the higher-end Apple Watch Edition models. Such a name would reportedly reinforce its position as a high end iPhone that’s meant to be sold alongside two standard iPhone models.

And then this morning from The Verge:

2017 marks the iPhone’s 10th anniversary, and the rumors are that Apple will be releasing three new models to celebrate: two handsets with incremental improvements, and a third, radically redesigned “premium” iPhone.

Here’s what bothers me about this. If Apple does this, then it’s essentially saying that a full screen iPhone isn’t for everyone. It’s only for the people who really want it, who are willing to splurge. That might be ok, except that the Galaxy S8 has this premium screen, and the Galaxy S8 isn’t a “premium” or “luxury” SKU. It’s the de facto in the Galaxy lineup.

In other words, Apple is saying this: what our competition views as essential, we view as a splurge only for those who want to pay us even more exorbitant amounts than they’re already used to paying. That really rubs me the wrong way.

If Apple’s baseline 2017 iPhone had everything the Galaxy S8 had to offer and then its premium iPhone had even more, that’d be one thing. But that’s not what I’m hearing through the grapevine. Instead it sounds like if you want an industrial design that’s visually similar to the Android competition, you’re going to need to go all the way to the top of Apple’s pricing tier. You shouldn’t have to do that. The subliminal message that Apple is emitting in its rumored decision here is unsavory.