Although it is nearly a year away, there are already many rumors circulating about the forthcoming iPhone 7. The sequential numerals of the iPhone range will have moved on to the seventh generation by the time that this smartphone arrives, and Apple usually signifies such an event with a significant redesign of the iPhone concept. So there this will unquestionably be a major device release for the consumer electronics giant, and this had led to a lot of speculation about what Apple will include in the handset.
It is obviously extremely early days to give a concrete opinion on when the iPhone 7 will be released. But there is no reason to believe at this juncture that Apple will move significantly away from the release schedule for the iPhone 6s. So we can probably expect to see the iPhone 7 in September, with Wednesday, September 7 a likely release date based on Apple’s strategy this time round.
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Three iPhone models
One possibility for the iPhone range this year is that Apple will introduce a third iPhone 7 model alongside the customary smartphone and phablet. It has been rumored for some time that Apple would release a 4-inch device, in line with the smartphone vision of its late founder and CEO Steve jobs. Although numerous sources have previously suggested that the so-called iPhone 7c would appear before now, it now seems that Apple may delay this device and launch it alongside its usual smartphone products.
It is unlikely that the iPhone 7 will be significantly redesigned compare to previous models of the smartphone when it is released. This is usual practice for Apple when it denotes a new iPhone generation with a new numerical iteration. Rumors abound that Apple may completely eliminate the Home button in the iPhone 7 in order for 3D Touch to come to the fore. This would enable Apple to reduce the overall size of the unit while retaining the same display size. Additionally, we can reasonably expect that this will be the slimmest iPhone yet to be produced.
Already concept images have emerged which predict how the iPhone 7 may appear when it is released, and one area of pressure for Apple will be related to battery life. Including larger batteries to improve the often criticized charging capabilities of the smartphone will be challenging if Apple opts for a slimmer device. But murmurings from close to the corporation suggests that it will not sacrifice the strong aspects of the iPhone series in order to achieve this with the iPhone 7.
One of the aspects that has featured prominently in early concepts is the notion of an edge-to-edge display, and it seems increasingly possible that Apple will indeed include this innovation. Reports from close to the Apple supply chain suggest that this will be an element of the iPhone 7, thus it seems probable at this time that this will be one new aspect of the handset that comes to fruition.
Screen resolution has been a something of a disappointment in recent iterations of the iPhone series, and this will mean that the onus is on Apple to improve this significantly with the iPhone 7. There have been a wide variety of rumors already related to this aspect of the iPhone series, with the suggestion that Samsung may even be roped in with the aim of producing OLED displays.
Apple will almost certainly improve the resolution of the iPhone 7 regardless of this rumor, and we should expect at the very least to see a quad HD phablet this time out. The more optimistic Apple fans will be hoping that Apple opts for 4K resolution when the iPhone 7 is released, but this would be a massive jump from the existing iPhone 6s, which featured a full HD phablet and a smartphone with a significantly poorer resolution than even this. So a quad HD iPhone 7 Plus and a full HD iPhone 7 seem more realistic.
Storage phase out
It has been suggested in many quarters that Apple will eliminate the 16 GB model of the iPhone series when the iPhone 7 hits the stores. This would be particularly likely if Apple does indeed significantly improve the resolution of the iPhone range with the iPhone 7 release, which would place a premium on the amount of storage required by the handset. Thus, it is likely that the iPhone 7 will begin with 32GB, 64GB and 128GB options. Apple could also offer the option to upgrade these base configurations via micro SD.
A possible suggestion for the iPhone 7 is that Apple could include a reversible USB-C port in the device, in common with the recent 12-inch MacBook. This is perhaps a long shot, considering that Apple recently made the switch in the iPhone series from 30-pin to Lightning. But USB-C could go some way to consolidating consistency across the Apple range of products, and is not something that should be ruled out entirely.
3D and curved display
Two more innovations that Apple has been linked with with regard to the screen of the iPhone 7 is a 3D unit and a curved display. To deal with the first of these two rumors, it is suggested that eventually Apple will utilize 3D technology in the iPhone series, and has indeed applied for patents that seem to apply to this prospect. However, the iPhone 7 will surely come too soon for this particular form of technology to raise its head.
A curved display is somewhat more likely, considering that Samsung has hugely popularized this aspect of smartphones already with the Galaxy series. Apple could choose to release a premium version of the iPhone 7 with a curved display, and sure enough has already applied for, and had approved, a patent of this nature as well. This could be rated as a 50-50 chance at the time of writing, and it very much depends on how Apple sees the market developing over the next few months.
Apple could also finally include sapphire glass in the iPhone 7; an aspect of the smartphone that has been rumored for sometime. It was widely anticipated that Apple would finally include this durable material in the iPhone 6s, after the corporation utilized sapphire glass in the manufacturing of its Apple Watch smartwatch.
However, this did not materialize in reality, but with Apple having bought up industrial quantities of this material previously, it seems a certainty that they will migrate this to the iPhone range sooner rather than later. The iPhone 7 could be the device which finally sees sapphire glass as part of the smartphone series.
Some sources suggest that the Home button will be dispensed with completely, while others indicate that Apple is considering as completely different direction for this common element of the iPhone series. Apple has already applied for a patent for technology that enables the Home button to spring out in joystick form to be utilized in gaming.
With mobile gaming becoming an increasingly important aspect of selling smartphones, this is indeed an innovation that Apple could consider seriously. It is notable that the technology behemoth took a very pro-gaming direction with the recent release of the Apple TV unit, and Apple could facsimile this approach when it releases the iPhone 7.
Three major camera innovations have been particularly linked with the iPhone 7. Apple is reportedly experimenting with professional standard DSLR technology. Another source has linked the company with introducing a unique periscope design, and a dual-lens snapper is predicted by some analysts. Certainly it seems likely that the camera technology in the iPhone range will improve significantly when the iPhone 7 is released.
Apple would love to freeze the price of the iPhone 7, but considering the significant amount of new technology that is being linked with the handset, consumers should expect a price hike this time round.