Update – The iPhone 7 and 7 Plus are now official, check out our hands-on with the phones here.
Another year, another iPhone, but given that we were treated to the iPhone 6s/6s Plus last year, what this means is that we can look forward to a brand new design this year. Say what you will of Apple’s products, but the company’s industrial designs are always something that is highly-anticipated, and we doubt that this year’s iPhone 7 will be any different.
So far not much is known about the phone but here’s what we know so far, so read on to find out what we might be able to look forward to for the iPhone 7.
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So far in terms of leaks, there hasn’t been much for the iPhone 7. However we have heard some rumors about the iPhone 7, and that is it will be thinner than its predecessor. How will Apple accomplish this? Apparently this will be done by removing the 3.5mm headphone port on the device, which presumably allow the phone to be thinned down by a bit.
So what does this mean for those who use their iPhones as a media player? This means that users will need to connect their headphones via the Lightning port. At the moment, there are several Lightning-compatible headphones, but admittedly the choices aren’t as varied compared to regular headphones.
To address this, we imagine that Apple may bundle 3.5 jack-Lighting adapters with the iPhone, or it could be sold separately (which we imagine probably won’t go down too well with many customers). It has also been rumored that Apple could bundle wireless headphones or Lightning-enabled headphones although the latter rumor would make more sense.
There have also been talks about the iPhone 7 being potentially waterproof. This ties in with the headphone port rumors, as by removing it, Apple will have one less area on the phone they’ll need to seal to keep the phone waterproof.
Update 01/19/2016 – iOS code has hinted at the removal of the headphone port, thus seemingly corroborating the earlier rumors that the iPhone 7 will be launched sans headphone port.
Update 02/02/2016 – A new rumor has suggested that the camera bump on the iPhone will be history, and that Apple could be removing the back antenna lines. The antenna lines on the edge are expected to remain.
There have not been any rumors surrounding the screen size of the iPhone 7. We can only assume this means that the iPhone 7 will feature a 4.7-inch display while the Plus model will feature a 5.5-inch display. There has not been any word on whether Apple plans on bumping the resolution of both models.
Some might find this a bit disappointing as there are phones out with higher resolutions and sharper displays, but it can be argued that to the naked eye, it would really be hard to tell how sharp it is unless put under a microscope. However we understand that on paper and if we were to compare specs side-by-side, it won’t look very good for Apple.
Now if you have been following the tech news, you probably heard some rumblings that Apple could switch to OLED displays, versus the LCD screens used now. If the rumors are accurate, this won’t be affecting the iPhone 7. In fact, there are talks that it might only be implemented in 2018, meaning that at earliest we can only expect the iPhone 8 to adopt OLED screens.
Without fail, Apple has introduced new chipsets to their iPhones with every refresh, and this year should be no different. With the A9 introduced last year, this year will probably herald the arrival of the A10.
So far Apple has relied on a dual-core setup and there have not been any rumors to indicate a change to quad-core. But there are some who claim that Apple could instead make the jump to a hexacore setup for the A10. Whether or not that rumor is true remains to be seen, but at the very least what we expect is that Apple will probably boost its clock speed, or manufacture it on a more efficient process (16nm last we heard), thus making it faster and more powerful without necessarily increasing the number of cores in the process.
With the iPhone 6s and 6s Plus, Apple bumped the RAM of the iPhone to 2GB. It was a welcome upgrade especially consider that the phone ended up being a lot faster than before. Based on the trends, Apple will most likely keep the 2GB setup for a while, so it is unlikely that we’ll be seeing a jump to 3GB or even 4GB this year.
As for storage, there have been rumors to suggest that Apple might introduce a 256GB model. The iPhone 6 saw the arrival of the 128GB model, and with the lack of microSD support, we can imagine that Apple will want to cater to the more hardcore crowd with a 256GB model. However, we don’t expect it to come cheap.
At this point, it is unclear if the introduction of the 256GB model will represent the fourth option, or if Apple plans on phasing out one of its configurations. Many users have been giving Apple flak for still keeping the 16GB model, which honestly after OS updates and apps leave users with little to nothing less for anything else.
We have heard some rumors that Apple could be working on a dual camera setup. Whether or not that is true remains to be seen as to date, there have not been any other similar claims. Perhaps it could be true for future iPhones, but for now, the dual camera rumor front has been rather quiet. We can, obviously, expect Apple to improve on the camera.
This could come in the form of larger megapixels, improved software, changes to the lens, and etc., but as cameras are becoming a priority when choosing a phone, you can be sure that Apple won’t be resting on their laurels.
Update 01/27/2016 – Recent reports have suggested that Apple could be giving the iPhone 7 Plus a dual camera setup. However there is a catch and that is not all Plus models will have it, indicating that there could be separate higher-end models with the dual-camera setup.
iOS 10 will be the next major version of iOS. Details of the software should be revealed at WWDC. At the moment, it’s anyone’s guess as to what the update will bring as Apple is still currently focused on rolling out updates to iOS 9, with the upcoming iOS 9.3 representing a pretty significant update with a ton of new features.
USB-C – This is expected to be the future standard in terms of connectivity. There are some claims that Apple will adopt USB-C for the iPhone 7, but we have a feeling this might not be true. Lightning is currently the proprietary method of connectivity, which also allows third-party manufacturers to create iOS-exclusive products. As if there wasn’t enough backlash when Apple swapped out the 30-pin connector for Lightning, we can only imagine the uproar if Apple were to switch to USB-C.
At the same time, there is some argument for USB-C. Like we said it is the future standard and some of Apple’s products are featuring the connectivity option, so it would make sense for Apple to try to bring the rest of their products in line. There is also issues in Europe where the EU has called for a standardized charger, which seems to mainly target Apple since they’re the only ones who aren’t using micro USB to charge right now.
3D Touch – This feature was introduced in the current-gen iPhones and if you’re not familiar, 3D Touch basically lets users access shortcuts on their phones by pressing down hard on the screen. An earlier rumor suggested that Apple could be improving upon the technology with “multitouch 3D Touch”, which from the name alone sounds like you will be able to use multiple fingers with 3D Touch at once.
It is admittedly a bit too early to tell what Apple will be bringing to the table for the iPhone 7. However with so many generations of iPhones behind it, it can be speculated as to what sort of features and functions the next-gen iPhone could pack. Note that these are just rumors and speculation for now, so be sure to take it with generous doses of salt, but do check back with us in the future as we will be keeping this article updated as we learn more about the iPhone 7. In the meantime, unless Apple changes things up, there is a good chance we will see its official launch in September, possibly during the third week.