The iPhone 8 hasn’t been officially announced yet. We don’t even know the confirmed specs or if the device will actually be called the iPhone 8. Still, that won’t stop some carriers from allowing their customers to reserve the iPhone 8 and get it before anyone else. German carrier, Telekom, has put a page on their website that allows customers to sign up for a ticket that grants them the opportunity to be the first to purchase upcoming devices including the iPhone 8.
Obviously the page is written in German but here’s one snippet of translated text:
Now you can secure your reservation service ticket online. Once manufacturers such as Samsung, Apple, Huawei, etc. present their latest smartphones, we invite you actively to redeem your ticket. In this way, you automatically benefit from a preferred delivery.
Clearly their ticketing service is meant to do more than just reserve the iPhone 8. The web page mentions other manufacturers like Samsung and Huawei as well as Apple. Depending on how many tickets are going to be given out for the iPhone 8, there may be some disappointed Telekom customers.
I remember working in a carrier retail store back in university and the iPhone 4S had just been released. We were a busy store in a big city and we had 2 iPhones allocated to our inventory. We had requested something like 40 of them. The iPhone 8 launch could be similar or even harder to get your hands on. Some analysts are expecting there to only be 2 to 4 million iPhone 8 units available worldwide at launch. I’m not sure how many will be allocated to Telekom in Germany but I have to imagine there won’t be enough to satisfy demand. Hopefully Telekom makes it clear that a ticket doesn’t guarantee you a device on launch day or else there could be some very unhappy Telekom customers that thought they had reserved the iPhone 8 for launch day.
While we don’t know exactly what kind of specs the iPhone 8 will have but there have been enough leaks this summer to give us a very good idea. Even Apple got in on the leaking fun with their HomePod firmware which revealed some previously unconfirmed iPhone 8 features.
Using some of the leaks we have seen this summer; some people have made very nice iPhone 8 prototypes to show off the design and rumored color availability. We had two recent videos from YouTuber Danny Winget that, I believe, give us the best sense of what is in store from Apple this fall. The first video from Danny compared the iPhone 8 and the iPhone 7S. We got to see the similarities between the two designs as well as the major differences. Then, Danny came out with another great iPhone 8 video which gave us a really good look at the iPhone 8 colors which include white, black, and a new copper gold.
From the Apple HomePod firmware we did learn a lot about some upcoming features. One of those was the SmartCamera. It’s not totally clear what the SmartCamera will do but, based on the code, it looks like the iPhone 8 will be able to sense the type of photo being taken and the surrounding environment. Using that data the iPhone 8 will then adjust the camera settings on the fly to ensure that you capture the best possible photo for that situation. For example, if there was a fast moving object, the SmartCamera would be able to focus on it and ensure you got a clear action shot. Obviously this all sounds great on paper but real world performance is what really matters. Maybe those of you that reserve the iPhone 8 can give the world a nice iPhone 8 camera demo.
We also know that the iPhone 8 will have a new face unlock feature called PearlID. This had been rumored for a long time and the HomePod firmware leak gave us a better idea of how Apple plans to make this work. Thanks, Apple! Using a front-facing infrared camera sensor, the iPhone 8 will scan a users face for certain mapping points and then unlock their device. PearlID is meant to be used in every situation where you would use TouchID. So, you should be able to scan your face in order to unlock your device, authorize Apple Pay purchases, and access secure apps. Speaking of TouchID…
We have no idea what is happening with TouchID. It seems crazy that Apple would drop TouchID from the iPhone 8 entirely but they did get rid of 3.5mm headphone ports so anything is possible. Obviously with the new OLED display and bezel-less design there is no room for a home button on the iPhone 8. That means TouchID has to go somewhere. Many analysts believe that TouchID may be incorporated into the power/lock button on the right-hand side but we will have to wait and see if that is confirmed. Maybe PearlID will be so good that you don’t care about TouchID!
That’s a quick look at the upcoming iPhone 8 features for those of you looking to reserve the unannounced device. Of course, even if you do reserve the iPhone 8, it may be hard to actually get your hands on one. With limited supply available at launch there may be a lot of people who reserve the device that don’t end up getting one on launch day. Are you going to be reserving an iPhone 8 for yourself at some point or will you wait for the actual reveal to get a confirmation of what the device is all about?