The latest speculation is suggesting that Apple is now facing issues with their new, front-facing 3D sensor. It’s just another reported hiccup in the long list of iPhone 8 problems that have been leaking recently. According to Bloomberg, the new 3D sensor is part of a feature that will allow users to unlock their iPhone by scanning their face. As well, much like with Touch ID, users would also be able to launch secure apps, authorize payments, and log into certain services. Unfortunately, for Apple, there seems to be issues with getting the 3D face scanning feature to work reliably. The only silver lining with this problem is that the issue is likely caused by a software problem rather than a hardware problem. That means that Apple could include the hardware in the device and unlock the feature in an iOS update. Until then, users would have to rely on Touch ID for unlocking their device and authorizing payments. Except for one small thing…
The Touch ID fingerprint sensor is also one of the major iPhone 8 problems that Apple is dealing with right now. Reports are suggesting that the new location of the Touch ID sensor is causing problems with reliability and responsiveness. Apple has been aiming to embed the Touch ID sensor underneath their new OLED display. This would make the device much more sleek and modern looking. However, it sounds like Apple has reduced the effectiveness of Touch ID in an attempt to modernize their device. There was some talk that Apple may completely forego Touch ID in favor of the 3D face scanning, detailed above. However, if the 3D face scanning is not ready to go on launch day or is not reliable enough to replace Touch ID then Apple faces a very difficult decision. Do they move ahead without Touch ID and trust that 3D face scanning will be sorted out in time for launch? Do they delay launch and ensure that all features are working properly? Analysts believe that Apple can still launch on time if they have made a decision by mid-August. That is the estimated time required for Apple to place their orders for parts and manufacturing in order to meet their usual iPhone launch window.
Sounds like the iPhone 8 problems are really stacking up, hey? Well, buckle up because we’re not done yet. In addition to Touch ID problems and 3D face scanning issues, Apple also appears to be dealing with a looming shortage of wireless chargers. Wireless charging has been requested by iPhone fans for years and it sounds like the company has listened when designing the upcoming iPhone 8. However, there may not be enough Apple-branded wireless chargers available on launch. This has resulted in speculation that Apple may not have the wireless charging feature enabled on launch. Instead, Apple would allow time to produce and ship wireless chargers to retailers before enabling the wireless charging feature through a software update. This is not a major issue that threatens to delay the launch of the iPhone 8 but it does limit the amount of time consumers have to buy the chargers in the lead up to the holidays. With a fall launch, every week a product is delayed is a week of missed holiday shopping time.
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Finally, the last iPhone 8 problem isn’t so much a problem for Apple as it is for budget-conscious consumers. Reports this week have suggested the iPhone 8 launch price could be over $1,000. Of course, some Apple fans will line up to pay the ticket price but others may balk at the increase. The price increase is reportedly due to Apple’s choice to use OLED screens in the new iPhone 8. OLED screens offer a better experience for users but they also cost far more than LCD screens, which Apple used in the past. In addition, some believe Apple cannot procure enough OLED screens to meet initial market demand. When low supply meets high demand, consumers and their wallets take the hit.
Of course, all of this is speculation. Apple could overcome all iPhone 8 problems and release a stable product on time. With the expected launch date coming up quickly, it won’t be long until we find out if these problems were as big as some suggest.