Apple just announced three new smartphones in the iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, and iPhone X. Unsurprisingly, these are the most capable, colourful, and downright flashy smartphones the company has ever made.

They're also the most expensive.

You'll doubtless have read numerous reports about the £1000 iPhone X, questioning whether any phone can be worth that amount of money.

But in the scrum to offer condemnation over Apple's attempt to forge a new ultra-premium smartphone tier, most have missed the massive price hike that's been undertaken with the iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus.

The iPhone 8 starts from £699/$699. That's £100/$50 more than last year's equivalent, the iPhone 7. The iPhone 8 Plus, meanwhile, starts from £799/$799, which is £80/$40 more than the iPhone 7 Plus.

We Brits have been especially gouged - the entry-level iPhone 6S cost £539 back in 2015.

Working class hero

Apples dramatic price escalation makes us a little uncomfortable here at PG. We're a portable gaming website, and we maintain the view that the best gaming phone is an iPhone.

But the stark truth is that the iPhone is becoming an ever more elitist proposition. Who has £700 free to spend on a fragile phone these days? Rich people, those due a swanky new company phone, and those who have the necessary cash flow to commit to chunky monthly payment schemes. That's who.

Of course, iPhones have always been expensive to an exclusive degree. But in the old days there was an alternative for pocket gamers on a budget: the iPod Touch.

Here was a device that essentially gave you last year's iPhone tech, minus the actual phone gubbins, in a compact form factor for less than £200. It was a true working class hero of a device.

Hunting for relics

The trouble these days is that the iPod Touch range is all but defunct.

Sure, Apple still sells the latest model, buried away in the Music section of its website. But that model was released in July 2015.

The sixth generation iPod Touch runs on an A8 CPU with 1GB of RAM. That's the same spec found in the three-year-old iPhone 6. Oh, but it's not even as capable as that ageing phone, because the chip has been down-clocked from 1.4GHz to 1.1GHz.

Elsewhere, the 'current' iPod Touch employs a 4-inch 1136 x 640 display - the kind of screen we last saw in 2013's iPhone 5S.

You get the picture. The current iPod Touch isn't a device that's particularly fit for playing the latest and greatest games on it. What's more, the strain is starting to show.

Do the right thing

Members of the PG staff who are still rocking the A8 generation of hardware have observed issues with a number of newer games. The bottom line of acceptable Apple hardware performance is shifting beyond these devices.

Given this and the dramatic price hike of Apple's latest iPhone range, as well as Apple's continuing reluctance to sell a genuinely affordable iPhone (the iPhone 5C and iPhone SE have been two halfway measures at best), I'd argue that the gaming world needs a new iPod Touch more than ever.

It doesn't need to be cutting edge - the iPod Touch range was never about that. Imagine a device that pairs the iPhone 7's A10 Fusion chip with the iPhone 6S's 4.7-inch 3D Touch-enabled display in a rugged body (it could even be plastic like the iPhone 5C), with a modest camera calibrated for Apple's current AR gaming push.

Sell it for around £200/$200 and we'd have a new pocket gaming champion of the people for the next several years, not to mention a hot new Christmas gift for younger gamers.

It would be the perfect affordable ying to the iPhone X's ludicrously priced yang.

Come on Apple. Do the right thing.