The only thing we know about the next iPhone is that we know nothing about the next iPhone.
Seriously. While there are a lot of iPhone 7s and iPhone 8 supposed leaks and rumors out there, they’re contradictory and unreliable, often based on renders and CAD files of mysterious provenance. It’s all part of the rumor mill’s need to trade on iPhone owners’ curiosity about the notoriously secretive Apple. But we should know the truth in a few weeks.
What Will the New iPhone Be Named?
Apple will likely release three new phones this year: the iPhone 7s and 7s Plus, and a new high-end model. Many people are using the name iPhone 8, but it could also be called the iPhone X (for the tenth anniversary), iPhone Edition (because of its high-end materials), iPhone Pro, or just iPhone, the way Apple has trimmed extra details off the iPad name.
What Are the Specs of the New iPhone?
The 7s and 7s Plus will likely be refreshed versions of the iPhone 7, with an Apple A11 Fusion processor and possibly more storage, but without major other changes. TechnoBuffalo claims the iPhone 7s will have a glass panel back that supports wireless charging, and that the 7s Plus will have dual cameras like the 6s Plus does.
The iPhone 8/X/Pro/Edition will likely have an edge-to-edge OLED screen like the Essential Phone does, with an 2,436-by-1,125 resolution, according to developer Steve Troughton-Smith. It is likely to be the same size as the iPhone 7/7s, but have a screen as big as the Plus models’. The phone may have a mirror-finish option.
Various rumors are debating whether the phone will support fingerprint recognition or rely on facial recognition. An image from leaker Evan Blass shows a full-front display without a physical home button and without a visible fingerprint sensor. Rumors ping-pong wildly over whether the phone will have a fingerprint sensor under the display, a fingerprint sensor on the back of the phone, or no fingerprint sensor at all.
Troughton-Smith also says the high-end iPhone will have a front-facing ‘depth camera’ for augmented reality use, and various rumors have the high-end phone featuring dual cameras arranged vertically. The full-face screen and vertical dual cameras are also shown in some McDonald’s marketing materials cited by The Inquirer.
A post on Forbes suggests that both of the iPhone’s cameras will record 4K video at 60 frames per second, and that the camera will tune its settings based on the scene it detects.
The phones will still likely split between Qualcomm and Intel modems, but be throttled to the maximum speed of the Intel XMM 7480 modem. That is a Category 12 modem, with maximum download speeds of 600Mbps. The Qualcomm X16 modem, which would be used in Sprint and Verizon models, is potentially a Category 16 modem, with gigabit speeds, but Apple doesn’t like its models to have vastly different performance.
When Is the New iPhone Coming Out?
For the past several years, Apple has thrown an event on the first or second Tuesday or Wednesday in September. The company isn’t likely to make people travel on Labor Day, a national holiday. That makes the most likely launch dates September 6 or September 12. If it follows tradition, the phone would then go on sale on the Friday of the following week—that’s September 15 or September 22.
How Much Will the New iPhone Cost?
The iPhone 7s and iPhone 7s Plus, if they exist, will likely cost the same as the existing iPhones: $649 and $749. The price of the high-end iPhone is up in the air, and seems to be dependent on Apple’s access to OLED screen panels, which are suffering a global shortage right now. That price could start anywhere from $849, one notch above the iPhone 7s Plus, to $1,199.