Ten years ago, Steve Jobs went on stage and told an audience, ‘Every once in a while, a revolutionary product comes along and changes everything.’
That product was iPhone – and its 2007 launch kick-started the whole app economy, not to mention turning Apple into one of the wealthiest companies in history.
But with a billion iPhones sold, Apple is planning big changes this year.
Multiple reports from respected analysts and industry sources have suggested this year’s iPhone 8 – expected in September, as is traditional from Apple – will be a near-complete overhaul.
Here’s what to expect.
It’ll be nearly all screen – and slightly curved
Respected analyst Ming-Chi Kuo – who has a long track record of accurate predictions of upcoming iPhone models – said that Apple is going to shake things up with a new ‘curved’ look in 2017.
The prediction has been echoed with rumours from within Apple’s supply chain.
Speaking to Nikkei Asian review earlier this year, source predicted that the next phone would be ‘equipped with a screen bent on the two sides’.
It’ll charge wirelessly
Other smartphone brands such as Samsung already offer wireless charging – and Apple uses it in Apple Watch – so analysts believe the new iPhone will charge wirelessly.
Analyst Ming-Chi Kuo of KGI Securities predicted wireless charging in at least one of the models on sale this year.
Instead of plugging phones into a cable, users will sit them on a dedicated charging pad to power them up.
It’ll ditch the Home button
As well as a larger screen dominating the front of the device, Apple may well ditch the Home button entirely – echoing rival Google, whose Pixel phone has no physical buttons on the front.
Manufacturing documents from Apple’s Asian supply chain suggest it’ll have a new ‘invisible’ home button, according to leaked documents seen by Apple Insider.
It’ll have a glass back
Citing sources in Apple’s supply chain, Japanese business publication NIkkei said the new phone will come in three models – and all will have glass backs.
The look will be similar to the old ‘glass sandwich’ look on iPhone 4, analysts believe.
All three phones will have glass backs supplied by Biel Crystal Manufactory and Lens Technology in China.
‘Apple has tentatively decided that all the 5.5-inch, 5-inch and 4.7-inch models will have glass backs, departing from metal casings adopted by current iPhones, and Biel and Lens are likely to be providing all the glass backs for the new iPhones next year,’ the source said.
There might be a new, bigger model
Next year’s crop of iPhones could contain a mysterious high-powered new model – codenamed ‘Ferrari’ – according to leaked documents from Chinese manufacturers.
Apple Insider says that the leaked document hints at three handsets – titled D20, D21 and D22 – and that D20 and D21 will be the iPhone 7S and 7S Plus.
The third handset will be, ‘A completely redesigned high-end variant,’ according to the site.
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