After recently disappointing sales news for the iPhone 6S, Apple will meanwhile be turning its attention to the release of the iPhone 7. The next generation smartphone will seemingly be particularly important for Apple, as KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo this week forecast that the iPhone 6S would fail to exceed the performance of the previous generation of the handset. This will mean that by the time the iPhone 7 is released that there could be pressure on the consumer electronics giant to revitalize what remains its most important product range.

New iPhone 7 Rumors Suggest Radical New Design

Brand new iPhone 7 design

So it’s perhaps not surprising that there are already numerous rumors related to the iPhone 7 emerging and circulating. And the latest speculation related to the forthcoming device suggests that Apple will completely redesign this iconic smartphone. Gene Munster has been giving his thoughts on the next generation iPhone 7, with the Piper Jaffray’s analyst having previously suggested on numerous occasions that Apple will eventually manufacture a high-definition television set.

In a note distributed among investors, Munster has claimed that the iPhone 7 will be based around entirely new design parameters. Central to this new approach will be the iPhone series eliminating the Home button, an innovation that has been predicted by many sources over the last couple of years.

Munster also believes that Apple will significantly increase the display size in the iPhone series in the next generation, ensure that the battery life is improved, and arm the market-leading smartphone with a new sapphire display. His belief is centered around the fact that the iPhone 7 represents a number change cycle, and therefore will be considered a new generation completely separate from the iPhone 6 and 6S.

Apple’s inclusion of 3D Touch in the iPhone 6S provides huge potential for the future of the smartphone, and it is thought that this could enable Apple to ditch the Home button sooner rather than later. The additional space that this would provide would enable Apple to increase the screen size significantly, which is the anticipated innovation.

It is also possible that Apple could look to reduce the size of the iPhone series, but as this is already considered one of the sleekest and most attractive smartphones on the market, perhaps Apple would instead look to upgrade the range with a larger display.

Touch ID issues

One potential issue for Apple with removing the Home button is the existence of TouchID in the iPhone series. This central pillar of the smartphone has, of course, been integrated into the Home button in recent device releases. One solution to this problem according to Munster would be moving features related to TouchID to the side of the phone, enabling Apple to remove the Home button completely. Munster states that the chances of an iPhone without the accustomed Home button are approximately 50 percent at the time of writing.

Another possible focus for Apple with the iPhone 7 could be battery life. Certainly recent Apple device releases have been criticized in this department, and Munster believes that Apple could address this as a consequence. Certainly there have been media stories related to the iPhone 6S that suggest that Apple consumers are pretty unimpressed with the battery life that this device produces.

Munster notes that Apple has been able to double the battery life of its declaimed MacBook laptop range, ensuring that the battery in the most recent releases of this series last for 10 hours. This has been achieved via a combination of more efficient processors and software, and Apple may seek a similar process for the iPhone 7. There is clearly a massive incentive for Apple to achieve this, and of the possible improvements related to the iPhone 7 it is one that would probably be most welcomed by customers.

Sapphire screen to debut

Additionally, Munster also suggests that the sapphire display that has long been linked with the iPhone series may finally materialize with the iPhone 7. This has been an anticipated introduction into the iPhone range for at least 18 months, with the durable material linked with the iPhone 6 back in 2014.

Now that Apple has utilized sapphire glass extensively in its Apple Watch range, it is believed that there is the potential to adapt this to the smartphone. Apple has previously utilized stronger aluminum from the Apple Watch sport for the iPhone 6S case, and could now adopt other design and construction elements from the smartwatch series for its iconic smartphone.

This seems particularly possible considering that it is a well-established fact that Apple has already bought up industrial quantities of the sapphire glass material. This was reported nearly two years ago when the rumors about sapphire glass in the iPhone 6 began, and it seems that the quantity of this durable material that has been purchased and stored by Apple is simply too great to be utilized by the Apple Watch alone.

It seems logical that this material will eventually migrate to the iPhone series, and certainly Munster believes that this could begin with the release of the iPhone 7.

Other iPhone 7 improvements

There are a raft of other improvements expected in the iPhone 7 when the next generation smartphone is released. Such innovations as waterproofing and a super slim design have already been linked with the smartphone. And all manner of sophisticated camera upgrades are possible, with the potential for Apple to even introduce professional standard DSLR quality technology when the iPhone 7 is released.

The 2016 iPhone release could also yield the long anticipated 4-inch version of the smartphone, possibly dubbed the iPhone 7c. This was expected by many analysts to appear during the existing calendar year, but Apple may instead choose to delay the release of this more affordable iPhone variant until the iPhone 7 hits the stores.

We should expect to see the iPhone 7 emerge in September 2016, and the handset promises to be a significant departure from the existing iPhone 6S based on early murmurings.