The iPhone lineup from Apple has not seen a major design overhaul since the iPhone 6. But as this year marks the tenth for the iPhone series, Apple is rumored to completely redesign this year’s flagship. The official announcement may still be a few months away but here is everything we know so far.
What’s new on the iPhone 8?
- A robust composite glass and steel construction
- Bezel-less 5.8-inch 2.5D curved OLED front panel with 4mm bezels
- Iris scanning and 3D face unlock features to replace the fingerprint scanner
- Vertical dual-camera placement to push VR technology
- IP68 water and dust resistance
- Apple’s new A11 processor and 3GB of RAM powering iOS 11
- Wireless and fast charging support
- A delayed release date to sometime in October or November
Instead of its iconic aluminium construction, the new iPhone for this year may employ a composite glass and steel construction. This would resemble the iPhone 4 in many ways and would be a nice way to bring about nostalgia.
As with any high profile smartphone launch, we’ve seen a fair few leaks of the device. In the past, various CNC models were captured in the wild as well as front panels for the new iPhone 7S and 7S Plus alongside the special edition iPhone.
Now we have even had videos of the phone in production at the Foxconn factory:
With the LG G6 and the Samsung Galaxy S8 sporting near bezel-less designs, the iPhone is expected to follow suit. The phone is to have a reduced 4mm bezel on all sides of the front of the device however by doing this, Apple may find it difficult to incorporate the fingerprint scanner.
While the photos look legit, we must take them with a pinch of salt. Recent reports over a delay for the next iPhone do not quite align with these peculiar and higher than usual quality leaks. As for what we think, the front bezel really needs to be black. The white in the pictures looks very odd and we can only hope the new iPhone comes with black bezels or at least options to choose between colors. Below is a full video on what the iPhone 8 may look like:
Screen and Security
The upcoming iPhone will most likely house a 5.8-inch 2.5D display resembling something as seen below:
But is Apple willing to bump up the screen resolution or adopt the “modern” 18:9 aspect ratio as opposed to the traditional 16:9? We are not sure. More importantly though, LCD panels will be ditched in favor of the more vibrant OLED panels after a shipment of over 70 million units from Samsung according to recent reports. We also hope the display integrates the ProMotion technology found on Apple’s recent iPad Pro lineup that brings faster refresh rates and a smoother performance.
With around three months for the phone’s release, the first accessory for the iPhone 8 confirms how the display may look. It is a tempered glass screen protector with a unique top bezel cut-out, something we can expect from the phone.
The position of the fingerprint scanner at this stage still remains a mystery. It is possible it may be moved towards the larger power button, the back of the device or completely removed. Instead, we may see a 3D face unlock or iris unlock feature akin to Samsung’s flagships.
With the bezel-less display, we are likely to see a “Functional Area” at the top and bottom of the device. This would house contextual controls and display rich notifications making the need for the top notification shade less pronounced. With how Apple have revamped Control Center in iOS 11, this could be something to look out for.
Apple has been using in-house CPU’s for quite a while and it will be no surprise if the new iPhone comes equipped with the expected A11 processor alongside 3GB RAM. Recently, a leaked schematic pointed at the same.
The limited RAM by comparison is not a surprise considering how well iOS is integrated with the hardware. And now that iOS 11 has finally been released as a beta to public, the experience is bound to get better.
In order to build on last year’s IP67 rating, the new iPhone may see that bumped up to IP68 to match its competition. This would make the phone dust and water resistant for up to 1.5 meters in depth for longer than thirty minutes. In pursuit of this upgrade though, the new iPhone will not bring back the headphone jack.
With interests peaking in the augmented and virtual reality space, the upcoming iPhone will look to capitalize on this. Reports and renders have suggested the primary camera on the phone to be a dual lens shooter. But strikingly, its layout is vertical in nature favoring usage in landscape mode most suitable for AR/VR consumption.
The rumor also ties up well with the iris and face recognition software the iPhone is expected to debut alongside a vast array of 3D sensors to revolutionize the front facing camera experience.
Battery and Wireless Charging
The iPhone is notorious for below par battery life. Although we have no evidence to suggest an increase in battery, the rumored larger screen and a smaller circuit board definitely points to it.
And whether battery capacity increases or not, Apple is rumored to finally adopt wireless charging in their upcoming iPhone. This comes after Apple reportedly signed a deal with Energous, a company that focuses on the implementation of such technology. However, reports so far tell us the company is struggling to perfect it.
On Weibo on Slashleaks, pictures of Apple’s alleged wireless charger have surfaced. It seems to sport a large charging coil and an efficiency up to 85% among other power and voltage numbers being stated. The slightly blurry “iPhone” text hints largely at this being the real deal but not everything is set in stone. Apple has stopped using green circuit boards ever since the first iPhone as stated by True-Tech which makes us question the authenticity of the leak for the time being.
Whereas it was previously thought that the new iPhone may come equipped with a USB-C charging port, those rumors have been put on hold. It seems the phone will continue to push the lighting port but the other end plugging into the charging brick will be USB-C instead of the traditional USB-A. And for the first time, we will see fast charging on an iPhone.
Instead of the traditional two phones we have seen Apple introduce in the past couple of years, it looks like the company will release three this year.
Eventually, two will come as upgrades to the current iPhone series with the third being the major upgrade setting the bar for future Apple iPhones and smartphones.
While we first thought the new iPhone would make its way to public in September, it does not seem very likely. There have been various delays Apple has encountered with its tenth anniversary smartphone. Some of these are because of a shortage of OLED panels from Samsung while others due to overheating issues with wireless charging.
In spite of this, September 17th seems to be the date everyone is expecting the new iPhone to be unveiled. Once again, the information comes via Venya Geskin in the form of a tweet. However, the grammar in the supposed official message is not very convincing so take this with a grain of salt:
AppleCare Advisors & Leaders received an email.
So the September the 17th seems very very likely to be keynote day. pic.twitter.com/O6zlyB4fKx
— Benjamin Geskin (@VenyaGeskin1) May 25, 2017
The largest delay though is due to a complete redesign of the circuit board. With Apple aiming to make it smaller for a more powerful battery, greater intricacy is required during mass production. A combination of all these factors likely means the release of the smartphones may be pushed to either October or November according to the most current news.
Pricing and Storage
Once known for their steep prices, competitors over the recent years have matched Apple’s pricing. Rumors point to a price tag of over $1000 (Dh 3670) for a base 128GB model. Yet, we are optimistic that the new iPhone will sell for $850 for a default 64GB of storage as opposed to this year’s 32GB. Whereas the iPhone 7S and 7S+ look to be priced at $649 and $749 respectively.
We’ll continue to amend and add new rumors and stories as they are brought to light. This story was last updated on August 21, 2017.