Contrary to the widely-held belief that Apple will release an iPhone 8 in 2017, a new rumor has emerged which claims that the next-gen iPhones will be the iPhone 7s and iPhone 7s Plus. If accurate, this could put a damper on the big birthday bash expected for next year.

red iphone 7s and 7s plus
Image Source: 9to5mac

iPhone 7s and iPhone 7s Plus reports from Japan

Before you dismiss this rumor, let’s look at where it comes from. First published by the Japanese blog Mac Otakara, the rumor/report claims that Apple will not release the iPhone 8 as previously rumored. However, without official word on this, you should take that with a grain of salt.

The 7s and 7s Plus do fall in line with recent rumors which have also suggested their existence. However, this new rumor goes into more detail about design and specs.

Design

According to the latest information, the iPhone 7s and 7s Plus could come with the same aluminum designs as this year’s handsets. It would be a complete shock, as we and many others were hoping for radical changes. However, according to this newest rumor, there could be some changes made to internal components, which we touch on below.

Size

As recently as today, reports/rumors have been suggesting that Apple will release three iPhone variations, a 4.7-inch, 5.5-inch, and a 5.8-inch, next year. But this latest rumor dismisses that out of hand, insisting instead that there will only be the two. To be honest, the rumor mill is in a confusing place right now. Yes, these speculations do agree that two smaller iPhones, possibly the iPhone 7s and iPhone 7s Plus, will be released. They could be the 4.7- and 5.5-inch devices, both featuring the tried and tested LCD displays despised by Apple fans.

However, if this no-iPhone-8 rumor is accurate, it could mean that the possible inclusion of wireless charging, an edge-to-edge display, an all-glass-body, and OLED technology will have to wait until 2018.

Red iPhones

As for what colors these two 2017 iPhones could come in, one new color has been touted as Red. Supposedly, it will be released alongside Black, Jet Black, Rose Gold, Gold, and Silver, with the ritually-hated Gray now long buried and possibly forgotten about.

Internal components

If next year’s handsets are to be nothing dramatic from a design point of view, areas which could see improvements are the chipset, RAM, and cameras. Rumors about the chipset already suggest that Apple has its semiconductor partner working on the A11 Fusion chip. Nothing is known about the RAM, but we will likely see improvements on this year’s models. In terms of the camera, due to the success of the iPhone 7 Plus dual-lens setup, it’s possible that we will see it transferred to the iPhone 7s, with the 7s Plus getting an upgrade on the already-existing design/specs.

Conflicting reports

Today’s report runs contrary to what the rumor mill has been talking about of late and goes against what well-known and connected KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has been saying. He predicts that Apple will introduce three new iPhones in 2017, with the first two being the iPhone 7s and 7s Plus and the third being the iPhone 8. Recent news has pointed to a lack of OLED components worldwide as the reason the 7s and 7s Plus could have LCD displays, but nothing until today’s rumor has indicated that 2017 could be an iterative year with no new design.

Nikkei suggested recently that Apple would launch three glass-backed iPhones and that all three would get the much talked-about wireless charging. So as you can see, there is some disparity between what is being reported.

What about the iPhone’s anniversary?

One of the fundamental driving forces behind the belief that Apple will release the iPhone 8 and not just the iPhone 7s and 7s Plus is that 2017 is the tenth anniversary of the iPhone’s launch. Because of that single fact, fans, analysts, and even critics believe Apple has one shot at reversing falling iPhone sales. To do that, it must give its fans something to cheer about and be proud of again. Many have been hoping that this will be the redesigned iPhone 8.

Perhaps the iPhone 8 rumors have placed the supposed handset on a pedestal so high that Apple could never hope to make it worthy of being there by September 2017, especially seeing as it would need almost every new piece of mobile technology known to man. Just to make fans and critics happy, Apple would need to include an OLED screen, all-glass design, and wireless charging and get rid of the Home button.