iPhone 8: This Week’s Rumor Roundup

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The tenth generation of the iPhone will arrive later this year when the iPhone 8 is released. Considering this landmark, it is expected that Apple will significantly overhaul the iPhone concept when the iPhone 8 hits the stores. Rumors and leaks about this highlight of the smartphone year are already circulating rapidly, so without further ado here is the latest news on the iPhone 8.

iPhone 8 – Siri upgrade

Reports this week suggest that the iPhone 8 will be the most intelligent mobile device that Apple has ever released, due to major upgrades to its Siri artificial intelligence software. This can perhaps be viewed as a direct response to the inclusion of the Bixby AI assistant in the forthcoming Galaxy S8.

Siri will be boosted by a completely new artificial intelligence platform when it is released this year, with market sources indicating that this will enhance the artificial intelligence program significantly. This has been an iconic aspect of the iPhone range for some years now, with Apple having opened up Siri to third-party developers earlier this year in an attempt to expand its scope.

Curved glass design

It is also suggested that Apple will return to an entirely glass-based design for the iPhone 8, moving away from the aluminum-based approach it has utilized for previous devices. A curved screen variant of the iPhone 8 is also very likely. However, Apple is extremely unlikely to completely abandon its flatscreen iPhones; thus, the curved version will be one of several models available.

Home button removed

In order to achieve this all-glass design, it is increasingly suggested that Apple will remove the Home button from the device, and incorporate several aspects of the smartphone’s capabilities within the display, likely including the Touch ID fingerprint sensor. With the Home button removed from the iPhone 8, Apple will have more room to extend of the display to the bottom of the phone, reducing the chunky bezels around the screen and shrinking the overall size of the device significantly.

Wireless charging dropped?

Meanwhile, in news that will be seen as something of a blow for Apple fans, there is talk this week that Apple will not include wireless charging in the iPhone 8. In a new report, market analyst Copperfield Research suggest that this feature that has been anticipated by some experts may not materialize in the iPhone 8 for technical reasons.

According to Copperfield, Apple was hoping that the iPhone 8 would offer wireless charging over a significant distance, thought to be around 15 feet. Indeed, there was evidence that wireless power company Energous would deliver this technology in the iPhone 8, and that it was advancing promisingly. This would have been a revolutionary advancement had it appeared in the iPhone 8, but now new leaks cast doubts on this possibility.

Copperfield knows that Apple has filed over a dozen patents for inductive charging since 2013. These all utilize magnetic coils and require contact with the charger. By contrast, Energous’ wireless charging standard ‘WattUp’ uses radio frequencies, technology that Apple has been critical of previously. Thus, the analyst believes that Apple may shift away from wireless charging in this generation.

Many Apple fans were particularly excited about the prospect of wireless charging in the next generation smartphone, and it would be a significant disappointment if the consumer electronics giant was unable to deliver it. Perhaps Apple will still opt to introduce this in the iPhone 8, even if long-range charging is unavailable. But it seems likely that Apple will now delay this aspect of the iPhone range until 2018 at the earliest.

OLED display

Elsewhere, it is increasingly believed that Apple is ready to significantly upgrade the display technology included in the iPhone. OLED technology is now almost certain to feature in the iPhone 8 generation, but this will not be the only way that the consumer electronics giant upgrades the display in the smartphone.

It is believed that Apple will increase the size of the display included in the iPhone 8 to 5.8-inches. This larger screen version of the smartphone would then launch alongside the usual 5.5-inch and 4.7-inch models. Apple clearly has many options for the release of the iPhone 8, and will probably put at least three versions of the smartphone into the public domain. Whether all of these will feature OLED, or merely some of them, remains to be seen, but Apple is likely to place a significant emphasis on consumer choice and flexibility.

There is also a strong case for Apple increasing the screen resolution of the display, at least in the larger versions of the iPhone 8. This should result in the first ever quad HD mobile from Apple in 2017, although again it remains to be seen which versions of the iPhone 8 benefit from screen resolution upgrades. Possibly we will see a full HD smartphone from Apple alongside other larger quad HD versions of the mobile.

VR focus

Other reports have focused on the virtual reality capabilities of the iPhone 8, with Apple TV to get in on the ground floor with this imaging technology. The release of the Sony PlayStation VR headset and the attendant PS4 Pro video games console has been a real boost for the acceptance of virtual reality. It now seems that VR will become a mainstream technology over the next few years, and the technology landscape has finally reached the point with virtual reality that has been anticipated for decades.

Thus, it is believed that the iPhone 8 will feature some serious virtual reality technology and that Apple will promote this strongly when the iPhone 8 is released. This could be a major selling point of the smartphone, or for that matter a direct response to a similar approach anticipated from Samsung in 2017.

It certainly seems that the iPhone 8 will be the most revolutionary smartphone release from Apple in several years, and something major to look forward to in September ahead of the Christmas marketplace.

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