The HomePod firmware that was released two weeks ago continues to reveal exciting details about the iPhone 8. It’s difficult to say whether Apple included the iPhone 8 details in the firmware deliberately or accidentally. Either way, the HomePod firmware has intensified the hype around the 10th anniversary iPhone. Noted iOS developers Steve Troughton-Smith and Guilherme Rambo have unearthed new details, including the fact that the iPhone 8 home button will be resizable.
iPhone 8 home button will resize as needed
The 10th anniversary iPhone will not have a physical home button. There will be a virtual home button at the bottom of the display. Steve Troughton-Smith has found evidence within the HomePod code that the iPhone 8 home button would automatically resize within a “periphery area.” The periphery area will show/hide and expand/minimize the home button indicator “as needed.”
We know some facts re iPhone 8 home button area:
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• it resizes
• indicator can be hidden
• no API to change color
• tab bars extend under it
— Steve Troughton-Smith (@stroughtonsmith) August 10, 2017
Troughton-Smith added that the iPhone 8 home button would have a static color to make it distinguishable. The virtual home button will disappear automatically when using certain apps such as watching videos on YouTube and Netflix. Noted Apple expert John Gruber tried to imagine what the resizable home button would look like. He believes it will be a circular home button that would turn into a pill shape when necessary. Gruber’s mockup is based on an iPhone 8 render created by Max Rudberg a few days ago.
This is my guess: pic.twitter.com/wEtIRxRxPe
— John Gruber (@gruber) August 9, 2017
However, as Mashable points out, the pill-shaped home button is not something that Apple would choose. It looks like the home button on an Android smartphone.
Pearl ID to support multiple face functionality
Guilherme Rambo has previously revealed that the iPhone 8 infrared sensor will be tracking your face at all times. It will detect whether you are looking at the phone, and if yes, it will automatically mute the notifications. The Pearl ID face detection will also allow users to make payments via Apple Pay. The technology can also be integrated with non-Apple services.
Now developers have found evidence that Pearl ID will support multiple face functionality. It means more than one user will be able to authenticate Apple Pay transactions by storing multiple faces. A reference to “multi biometrics” in the HomePod firmware signals that Pearl ID would not completely replace the Touch ID fingerprint sensor.
Here are the exact iPhone 8 metrics
In a separate tweet, Troughton-Smith shared evidence of the iPhone 8’s exact measurements (screen points, not pixels). Traditionally, the measurements provided to case makers have some flexibility. But the leaked metrics are so precise that software designers could put them to good use. The iPhone 8 will have a 5.8-inch OLED display, though the phone’s overall size will be similar to the 4.7-inch iPhone 7. Troughton-Smith confirms that the previous leaks were pretty close to the final design.
These are the metrics used by the status bar on the edge-to-edge iPhone, including notch height and ear width. Designers, have fun pic.twitter.com/lPD2RbEJFA
— Steve Troughton-Smith (@stroughtonsmith) August 10, 2017
Will Apple change the iPhone naming patter this year?
The 10th anniversary iPhone will have an entirely new design. It will sport a bezel-less OLED display with a cutout at the top for the front camera, infrared sensors, and the ear speaker. The screen on either side of the cutout could be used to display icons for WiFi, battery, Bluetooth, and signal strength. The phone will have a vertically-arranged dual camera on the back. It will be powered by the new A11 chipset.
Apple will also launch two other smartphones – dubbed iPhone 7S and iPhone 7S Plus for now. These devices will retain the overall design of their predecessors, but will pack internal upgrades. Recent leaks suggest these phones will have a glass back, just like the iPhone 8, to facilitate inductive wireless charging. They won’t be minor upgrades in the real sense. So, do they deserve the “S” moniker?
Apple blogger John Gruber believes that the tech giant will ditch the “S” moniker this year. Gruber has an impressive track record when it comes to revealing details of yet-to-launch Apple products. He argues that the so-called iPhone 7S and 7S Plus won’t be described as “S” models since they are “sporting entirely new design.” He said the three new phones coming this year could be called iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, and iPhone 8 Pro.
Or Apple could take a different approach, dropping the numbers. In that case, the devices could simply be called iPhone, iPhone Plus, and iPhone Pro. There have also been speculations that the 10th-anniversary smartphone could be named iPhone Edition or iPhone X. Only Apple knows what it would call the new phones.
Will iPhone 8 drive Apple’s valuation past $1 trillion?
Meanwhile, RBC Capital Markets analyst Amit Daryanani predicts in his latest research report that Apple will become the first company to reach and sustain the $1 trillion market cap. Apple registered better than expected sales during the latest quarter. The launch of 10th anniversary iPhone should further boost its sales during the all-important holiday shopping season.
The anniversary iPhone is expected to trigger an upgrade “super cycle” that will last several quarters. Daryanani estimates Apple stock needs to go up from the current level of $160 to about $195 to touch the $1 trillion valuation.