Launch season is quickly approaching and that means speculation is ramping up. One industry analyst, Ming-Chi Kuo, has released some of his predictions as we inch closer and closer to the iPhone 8, iPhone 7S, and iPhone 7S Plus launch date. For the uninitiated, Ming-Chi Kuo is one of the most respected Apple analysts and his information is often very accurate. This isn’t some random Twitter user just shouting opinions.
In his note, obtained by AppleInsider, Kuo makes a few predictions about the upcoming iPhone launch. One of the most notable pieces to come from the note is the prediction the Apple will only launch the iPhone 8 in three colors: black, silver, and gold. Even more interesting is the suggestion that the iPhone 7S and iPhone 7S Plus launch will feature the same three colors. Clearly Apple wants to keep some consistency in its lineup despite the fact that the iPhone 8 will be the premium model while the other two are going to be a step down from Apple’s new flagship. I guess with the SE available we can refer to the 7S and 7S Plus as mid-range devices.
The idea that Apple is only planning on launching three different colors this fall is consistent with some leaked photographs we saw earlier this week that showed the alleged iPhone 8 in black, silver, and gold.
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That’s not the only piece of information we got from Ming-Chi Kuo this week. He also suggested that the iPhone 8 would be available at the same time as the iPhone 7S and iPhone 7S Plus launch. That flies in the face of some earlier rumors that indicated the iPhone 8 would be delayed substantially. Some iPhone fans were starting to worry they may not be able to get their hands on an iPhone 8 until something in November. These new rumors should help alleviate that fear.
Of course, having it launch on time doesn’t mean that the iPhone 8 will be available to everyone on launch day. Unlike the iPhone 7S and iPhone 7S Plus launch, there is some speculation that the iPhone 8 will be available in very limited numbers – at least initially. Ming-Chi Kuo and other analysts believe that Apple is having trouble procuring enough OLED screens to meet the expected demand from consumers. In fact, on launch day, it’s expected that Apple may only have about 2 to 4 million iPhone 8 units available. In contrast, there should be tens of millions of devices available for the iPhone 7S and iPhone 7S Plus launch. If you don’t mind a “mid-range” device then your chances of being able to pick up an iPhone 7S or 7S Plus are much higher.
In addition to colors and availability, Ming-Chi Kuo also confirmed the design that may have been the worst kept secret in the smartphone industry. Most of us already had a pretty good idea of what the iPhone 8 is going to look like. That was even before Apple went ahead and accidentally leaked a whole bunch of unannounced features of the iPhone 8 including an image of the design. There will be no more home button on the iPhone 8. Instead, all you will see on the front of the device is an edge to edge OLED display. It’s unclear where TouchID has moved but a lot of people are speculating that the fingerprint sensor has been integrated with the lock/power button.
Of course, with the new 3D face scanning feature – TouchID may be a feature you don’t even need! Again, courtesy of Apple themselves, there has been a leak about PearlID – the new way iPhone owners will be able to unlock their device. PearlID will use a front facing infrared camera to scan a user’s face and then unlock the device as well as authorize Apple Pay purchases and access secure apps. Your beautiful, smiling face should be able to replace your fingerprint in the iPhone 8.
Leak season is in full swing right now. The iPhone 8 launch looks to be on time and should coincide with the iPhone 7S and iPhone 7S Plus launch. This will give users the opportunity to compare features and consider which one they want to pick up for themselves this fall. Of course, that’s assuming the iPhone 8 is even an option. Launching on time doesn’t mean widespread availability. If you want an iPhone 8 you should probably start shopping for a tent now because you will definitely be camping out.