Touch ID is one of the best things about the iPhone 7. It’s quick, secure and easy to use, and when combined with the new haptic home button, it makes getting into your iPhone or making purchases extremely easy. However, a new rumour suggests that Apple is going to ditch Touch ID for the iPhone 8, but it has a good reason.
According to renowned Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, the iPhone 8 is going to feature a bezel-less display – just like the LG G6 and Samsung S8. That way, Apple will be able to give the new iPhone a larger screen, without making the handset itself larger. However, it looks like the Home button is going to be the first casualty in the new change, and according to Kuo, Apple is set to replace it with a new function area.
“Of particular note is that we expect the OLED iPhone will adopt a 5.8” physical OLED panel,” Kuo’s report says. “But the actual display area will be around 5.15”, and the rest will be an area for functions (e.g. allocation of virtual buttons).” The report goes on to say the iPhone 8 will come with other biometric features to replace Touch ID, like facial recongition for example.
This new area of screen could work like like the MacBook Pro’s TouchBar, giving users relevant controls when needed, but disappearing altogether when watching something like a movie, for example. In addition to the screen size, Kuo also says the new iPhone should feature a larger battery.
Everything else we know about the iPhone 8
The iPhone 7 is here, but Apple’s current smartphone looks a lot like the iPhone 6s – and it doesn’t add that many new features, either. Instead, rumours are suggesting the iPhone 8 or 7s will be the phone we’ve really been waiting for – and it’s coming in 2017. So what do we know about about the next iPhone? Here we’ll provide you with a one-stop roundup of all the key things you need to know about the iPhone 8 (7s), including the estimated UK release date, the new phone’s specs and features – as well as any other rumours and news.
1. There could be THREE new iPhone 8s
New rumours suggest those models will be joined by a third, higher-end model. According to a report from the Japanese website Mac Otakara, this new phone will be called the iPhone Edition, in the same way the higher end Apple Watch is called the Apple Watch Edition. Fast Company previously suggested the next iPhone would cost over $1,000, and it’s possible this is the handset its source was talking about.
What’s not yet clear, is how the iPhone Edition will be different from the other two handsets. A look at the Apple Watch line-up reveals the only difference between the Apple Watch and Apple Watch Edition models is the use of a high-end ceramic finish, and it’s possible Apple could be bringing the same ceramic finish to the iPhone 8. For the last few years Apple has concentrated in giving consumers more choice – when it comes to colours and finishes at least – so this rumour is certainly viable.
2. We pretty much know the iPhone 8 (7s) release date
Apple hasn’t announced anything about the iPhone 8 (7s) yet, but we already have a good idea of when it will be released. Apple tends to stick to a pretty rigid timeframe when it comes to iPhones, and a quick look at previous iPhone release dates will give a very good idea of when the next iPhone is due. Apple tends to release an iPhone every year in the last two weeks of September, so we should see the iPhone 7 around this time next year.
3. It should be easier to get an iPhone 8 (7s) when it is released
A new report by BlueFin Research Partners, and reported on by MacRumors, suggests that Apple will begin making the iPhone 8 earlier than usual – but states that it doesn’t necessarily report to an earlier release date. Instead of changing the release date, it looks like Apple will begin production earlier, this time round, so it has more handsets available when then expected September release date does roll around,
4. The iPhone (8) 7s could feature wireless charging
This year the iPhone 7 debuted water-resistant capability, something already seen on Android phones for the past few years – and it’s possible Apple will follow the Android crowd with another feature, too. Phones such as the Samsung Galaxy S7 feature wireless charging, and it’s possible Apple will introduce that feature in the next iPhone. Apple tends to wait a while before introducing new technologies, and the introduction of wireless charging could provide a good incentive to get the updated iPhone.
5. The iPhone 8 (7s) should cost the same as the iPhone 7
Apple hasn’t changed the price of the new iPhone recently, and that looks set to continue for the iPhone 8 or iPhone 7s. However, that doesn’t mean you won’t end up shelling more for the iPhone 7s: Apple may have kept the prices the same, but it’s also dropped and added storage options over the iPhone range. That’s forced owners to buy a smaller-capacity iPhone – or upgrade to a larger-capacity, more expensive model than before.
6. The iPhone 8 (7s) could finally use an OLED screen
For the past few years we’ve expected Apple to put an OLED screen in the iPhone, and now the Sharp CEO, Jeng-wu Tai, has pretty much confirmed the iPhone 8 (7s) will have one.
Late last year, Tai said: “The iPhone has been evolving and now it is switching from LTPS to OLED panel. We don’t know whether Apple’s OLED iPhones will be a hit, but if Apple doesn’t walk down this path and transform itself, there will be no innovation. It is a crisis but it is also an opportunity.” Tai is an executive at Foxconn, the parent company of Sharp, and also the people that make the iPhone – so it’s very likely he’s privy to some serious insider knowledge.
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