New 'iPhone XS' will be available in gold

iphone x

Latest iPhone X news


New 'iPhone XS' will be available in gold

The 2018 version of the iPhone X will be called the 'iPhone XS', according to the latest reports, which also reveal that Apple will offer the handset in a new gold colour option.

In a leaked image obtained by 9to5Mac, Apple's upcoming 5.8-inch and 6.5-inch flagships can clearly be seen to have a gold frame around its display – a colour option that wasn't offered on last year's iPhone X device, with the Cupertino firm only producing space grey and silver variations.

The website also revealed that it believes the new iPhones will carry the 'iPhone XS' moniker – which is likely to signify that this model is an iterative update rather than a major overhaul.

"Other details are still to be determined, but we can report with certainty that iPhone XS will be the name," 9to5 Mac reported. "The OLED model will come in two sizes including a larger version, and each will be offered in gold for the first time."

The iPhone XS is expected to be one of three new handsets unveiled alongside the new Apple Watch Series 4at Apple's next big event – which the tech giant has now confirmed will take place on 12th September.


New iPhone X benchmark leak reveals improved performance

This year's iPhone X successor will boast significant performance and efficiency boosts over the current model, according to new benchmark tests that have appeared online.

The benchmark listing for a handset referred to as "iPhone 11,2" has appeared on Geekbench's online database, revealing the handset to be running iOS 12 with a new six-core CPU and 4GB RAM. As noted by BGR, the handset used in testing can only be the 2018 iPhone X or iPhone X 'Plus'.

The new device clocked up a single-core score of 4673 in the benchmark tests, whilst its multi-core score stood at 10912. By comparison, the current iPhone X model scored 4206 for single-core testing and 10123 for multi-core performance - equating to moderate gains of 10% and 7%, respectively, BGR reports.

Apple is widely expected to be releasing three new major iPhones in 2018: a 6.1in LCD entry-level model with single camera, a 5.8in, direct iPhone X follow-up, as well as a larger 6.5in 'Plus' version.

From the benchmark leak, it's unclear which one of the two premium 2018 iPhones this "11,2" device is as both have been tipped to boast a new A12, 7nm processor with 4GB RAM - but it seems clear that prospective users can expect considerable performance boosts with the new handsets.


New iPhone X render appears online

A rendering of Apple's upcoming 6.1in iPhone X follow-up has surfaced online, depicting a number of changes from the Cupertino firm's current flagship, according to TF International Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo.

The image, obtained by BGR, shows the smartphone inside a protective case made by third-party company Ghostek. The render has been based on "detailed files" obtained from the factory that manufactures the handsets - with the website adding that a separate reliable source has also confirmed its accuracy.

As tipped previously, the leak appears to confirm that Apple has ditched the Home button and Touch ID for its mid-range offering, whilst its TrueDepth facial recognition system can be seen in the handset's upper display notch.

The bezels surrounding the screen have also been widened slightly when compared to the current iPhone X - due to the new 6.1in model possessing an LCD display as opposed to OLED.

On the rear, the render shows a single-lens camera, albeit a larger one than that found on the iPhone 8 - suggesting Apple has opted for a new sensor and optics for this model. As BGR notes, the additional 5.8in and 6.5in OLED models - which are also due for release this year - are both expected to boast the same dual-lens camera found on the current generation.


LCD-supplier shares drop after report of OLED screens for all 2019 iPhone models

Apple will switch to organic light-emitting diode (OLED) screens for all three of its new iPhone models in 2019, according to a report released by the South Korea Electronic Times.

The shift would nudge liquid crystal display (LCD) manufacturers like Japan Display Inc. and Sharp Corp. out of the market to make way for OLED suppliers. As a result of the report, Japan Display shares fell 21%, its biggest intraday drop since 2014, while an OLED supplier, Universal Display, surged 18%.

Analysts are critical of such a drastic move, however, according to Bloomberg.

"It is unlikely that Apple will be releasing three OLED models next year," said Jeff Pue, analyst at Yuanta Securities Investment Consulting in Taipei.

Pue puts this down to the inability of companies to mass-produce OLED screens. Samsung Display Co., Apple's sole supplier of OLED screens for its high-end iPhones, also supplies screens for its own phones, creating a limited supply that does not appear capable of taking on the strain of three new iPhone models.

LG Display, the other major OLED manufacturer, does not nearly match up to Samsung's capabilities, though the company did see a 5.9% intraday share boost after the Electronic Times report.

"Ultimately, the plan is for Apple to go full OLED on its iPhones as far as I know but whether that's going to happen at this point is a question mark," said Jerry Kang, a senior principal analyst at IHS Markit in South Korea. "Apple hasn't been able to expand on its iPhone X production because of market demand and price issues."

Despite low iPhone X demand, Apple still sells a large volume of iPhones (52.2 million iPhones in Q2 of 2018 alone) and supplying such a large quantity of OLED screens for 2019 would prove difficult and expensive.

The LCD screen, used on the iPhone 8 and previous models, is cheaper and easier to come by, but uses more power and provides less colour accuracy than OLED panels. The iPhone X, which uses OLED, has still garnered complaints of colour-display changes, as well as burn-in, or images staying on the screen after powering down.

Kang told CNBC that Apple could only "shift to using OLED panels for all iPhone models once it achieves the market demand with competitive price".

With the iPhone X price point of £999, Apple will certainly have to work on providing an affordable option for the average consumer if it does indeed commit to exclusively OLED screens.


Weak iPhone X demand may cause Apple shares to struggle

Apple could see its shares struggle over the next twelve months due to weak demand for the iPhone X, according to a new research note from Nomura Instinet analyst Jeffrey Kvaal.

As reported by CNBC, Kvaal told clients that analysis into average selling prices for recent iPhones suggests fewer sales for the Cupertino firm's flagship handset than previously hoped for.

"iPhone volumes are not deteriorating, though iPhone X remains uninspiring," explained Kvaal. "Apple guidance implied third fiscal-quarter iPhone unit volumes that were better than feared. We do not believe, however, sell through has meaningfully improved."

The analyst added that a decline in the rate of phone upgrades was a key factor, with US upgrade rates falling to just 5.3% during the first quarter of 2018, CNBC reports.

"We see little reason for [the upgrade rate] to improve in the near term," Kvaal said. "None of the carriers appear particularly distraught by the lower gross adds - and lower churn - that accompanies the lower upgrade rate."

Elsewhere, Kvaal also predicts that Apple's services business should continue to grow - but holds reservations about its sustainability going forward.

"Apple has made several sustainable improvements to the Services growth trajectory," the analyst acknowledged, "[but] we believe the tailwind from licensing and from AppleCare may ease in coming quarters.

"We would appreciate better disclosure from Apple on its Services business to help gauge revenue growth."


iPhone X follow-up may cost less than current model

The upcoming successor to the iPhone X could go on sale for $100 less than the current model, an analyst has claimed, with the 5.8-inch follow-up set to retail at $899.

In a memo to investors seen by Apple Insider, RBC Capital Markets analyst Amit Daryanani said Apple will reduce the cost of this year’s handset after the “limited success” of pricing the current model at $999.

Instead, the Cupertino firm will price the larger 6.5-inch Plus version at $999, the analyst claimed, noting that the price changes would decrease Apple’s average selling price - but could provide a boost to the overall number of handsets sold.

The memo also appeared to back up previous rumours that there will be three different iPhone models released in 2018, with the aforementioned 5.8in and 6.5in iPhone X follow-ups to sport OLED displays and a third, 6.1in variation to feature an LCD panel.

The 5.8in and 6.5in handsets will also sport “premium steel” around the edges of the device, while 6.1in model’s display will be flanked by aluminium. The analyst added that all three versions will also adopt Face ID technology – which can only be found on the iPhone X at present.


Nearly a quarter of iPhone users intend to upgrade to a new model in 2018

Almost a quarter of current iPhone owners intend to upgrade to a new model when Apple's next-generation of devices is released this year, according to a new survey conducted by venture capital firm Loup Ventures.

The company polled 511 US smartphone owners regarding their smartphone upgrade intentions, discovering that 226 were currently owned an iPhone. Of those 226, 22% said they intend to upgrade to a new model once it's released in the autumn – whilst an additional 20% said they would upgrade to the iPhone 8 or X in the next year.

Breaking down this 42% further, Loup Ventures found that 28% planned to switch to the iPhone 8, while 18% said they would opt for the iPhone X. 51% are holding out for the next-generation of handsets.

The same survey conducted last year found that 23% were intending to upgrade to the then-unreleased iPhone 8 and iPhone X. Just 15% said the same back in 2016.

Announcing the survey results, analyst Gene Munster summarised that the iPhone business is now "settling into a lower growth, more predictable rhythm".

"Looking at the data over the past two years suggests annual iPhone growth will settle into a more predictable 1-5% range," the analyst said. "The good news is a more predictable iPhone growth, albeit at a lower rate, should be a positive for [Apple's] multiple.

"We expect investors will increasingly view the iPhone hardware business as a subscription business, given the upgrade patterns are becoming more predictable."

The poll didn't take into account rumours of a new handset tipped to be 25% larger than the iPhone X, but Loup Ventures said this should have a "positive impact" on both iPhone growth and users' intent to buy.


Samsung to reduce iPhone X OLED panel production

Samsung is apparently set to reduce production of the OLED panels found on the iPhone X, Nikkei reports, following Apple’s reported decision to reduce output of the handset due to weak demand.

The cut means that Samsung Display will now manufacture no more than 20 million OLED display panels for the flagship at its Chungcheong plant during the January-March quarter. That figure is down from an initial target of 45-50 million panels, according to the website.

Cutbacks may not stop there, either, with the report also suggesting that further reductions are possible between April and June of this year, although targets have yet to be set for that quarter.

The revised figures equate to just 60% of the firm’s initial plant production plan, while Samsung Display’s Apple-dedicated plant's output will fall by at least 50%.

To plug the financial gap left by the weaker-than-anticipated iPhone X demand, the Korean giant is now said to be looking to secure new OLED panel orders from within the Chinese market, amongst others.

However, Nikkei added that Samsung’s display business is expected to post a year-on-year decline in profits for the first half of this year.


Apple tipped to shift 100 million units of 2018 iPhone

Apple will sell 100 million units of its upcoming 6.1-inch iPhone, KGI Securities' Ming-Chi Kuo has predicted, with the analyst also tipping the handset to replace the current iPhone 8 at its price point.

As reported by 9to5Mac, Kuo has said the device will look similar to the current iPhone X but will be considerably more affordable for consumers - potentially priced as low as $699.

The analyst explains that, despite its premium look, the new 6.1in LCD iPhone will sport a number of less pricey components and materials than the X currently does, such as an aluminium frame instead of a stainless steel one.

However, this combination of low price point and premium feel will make it Apple's best-selling device of 2018, Kuo believes, with 100 million handsets expected to be sold.

The upcoming 6.1in LCD iPhone is not the only new iPhone model on the horizon, however. A previous KGI report revealed that Apple is also gearing up to release two additional configurations: a 5.8in OLED direct replacement for the current iPhone X model and a larger 6.5in OLED version.

As 9to5Mac reports, all three SKUs are essentially iterative replacements for the current iPhone X, which Kuo previously predicted will cease production this summer.


A number of iPhone X users have taken to Apple's support forums to report a glitch that prevents them from answering incoming calls.

The complaints allege that the iPhone's touchscreen does not immediately turn on when receiving a call - leaving users unable to answer or even see who is calling.

The issue was first raised by one user back in December, who stated that the device was only ringing and vibrating when receiving a call. Sometimes the display would show after "2-3 rings" and sometimes it simply would not appear at all, they added.

Rebooting the device - as advised by Apple - does also not appear to fix the bug, with the same user stating that the solution works for a while but "after 10-11 calls" the error returns. Reinstalling iOS also fails to correct the problem.

"I tried every possible option to resolve the issue," another user replied. "Thrice reinstalled the iOS, nothing has happened yet. In fact, Apple customer support has acknowledged the issue but they don't have any solution."

Apple has admitted that the cause of the problem is currently unclear - but told Engadget that it is now looking into the issue.


Could the iPhone X disappear from the market this year?

Apple could discontinue the iPhone X this summer rather than reduce its price before the second-generation model is released, renowned KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has predicted.

In a research note seen by MacRumors, the analyst reasoned that continuing to sell its current flagship at a lower price would harm the Cupertino firm's expected mid-range 6.1in iPhone, due for release later this year.

"iPhone X would hurt product brand value & lineup of 2H18 new models if it continues to sell at a lower price after 2H18 new models launch," Kuo stated in the research note. "Lowering iPhone X's price after the 2H18 new models launch would be a negative to product brand value given 3D sensing and OLED display are features of the new high-price model.

The analyst continued: "Additionally, to sell iPhone X at a lower price may have a negative impact on shipments of the new 6.1" LCD iPhone in 2H18. Thus, we estimate iPhone X will reach end-of-life (EOL) around the middle of 2018."

If Kuo's predictions come to fruition, 2018 would see Apple release three new handsets: the second-gen 5.8in iPhone X, a 6.5in iPhone X "Plus" variation and the aforementioned mid-range 6.1in model, Mac Rumors reports.


The iPhone X is now more popular than the iPhone 8

The iPhone X has proved to be more popular than the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus, according to the latest research, with adoption rates of the more expensive model surpassing those of the other two 2017 handsets.

Despite Apple not releasing sales figures, the latest statistics from analytics firm Mixpanel (via Business Insider) reveals that the iPhone X's adoption rates overtook those of its 8 and 8 Plus cousins during the latter period of November.

The premium handset now boasts an adoption rate of 4.76% - whilst the iPhone 8 stands at 3.59% and 8 Plus at 2.78%, Mixpanel discovered.

Mixpanel gains its figures by tracking iPhone owners using apps that are integrated with its software development kit (SDK).

The data also revealed that all three devices were lagging behind the previous generation iPhone 7 and 7 Plus - but the iPhone X could be on course to overtake them in the coming months.

Apple CEO Tim Cook described demand for its most recent handset as "very strong" during the Cupertino firm's Q3 sales call - whilst production of the handset has also been ramped up in time for the holiday season.


iPhone X now ships in 1-2 weeks in the US

US shipping times for the iPhone X have been reduced to just 1-2 weeks in time for the upcoming holiday season, Apple has confirmed.

The Cupertino firm has updated its US website with the new estimates for both the 64GB and 256GB configurations - just a week after they had been revised down to 2-3 weeks.

It's a marked improvement on the initial shipping dates for the iPhone X - which stood at 5-6 weeks when the handset was made available to pre-order.

As noted by 9 to 5 Mac, a number of customers that had already placed orders have even seen the handset arrive a lot quicker than the quoted 2-3 weeks delivery time they were given.

The iPhone X production process has been hampered with component shortages in the supply chain in recent months, with reports back in October estimating that only 2-3 million handsets would be available at launch.

As reported by MacRumors at the time, renowned KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo specifically pointed to production issues relating to the flexible printed circuit board (FPCB), as well as the rear-camera lens circuit board and infrared dot projector.

The component problems lead the analyst to adjust his fourth quarter shipments estimate to 25-30 million - down from an initial 30-35 million.


Apple approves 'Notch Remover' app for iPhone X

Apple has approved an app that allows you to remove the notch from the top of the iPhone's display. As part of the iPhone X's design, it introduced a 'notch' in the top of the display where the speaker and front-facing camera reside.

On either side of this 'notch' the remainder of the screen is displayed, with the time/network showing on one side and status icons (such as Wi-Fi, network and battery levels) showing on the other side.

However, iPhone X users voiced their discontent with the introduction of this feature, so Apple has now allowed a third-party developer, Axiem Systems, to add its app onto the App Store, which turns this notch into a black band across the top of the screen.

"So glad I found this. I could not stand the notch. This is a clever way to get rid of it. It makes the iPhone look like an iPhone!" one user wrote in the reviews section of the app.

However, other reviewers said it hadn't in fact removed the notch on all screens, only on some, such as the lock and home screen and it was therefore a waste of money (the app was priced at 99 pence at the time of publication).

iPhone X: Apple fixes iPhone letter 'i' bug

Apple has fixed a problem stopping iPhone users from typing the letter 'i' with another update - iOS 11.1.1. When customers updated their version of iOS to 11.1, their devices autocorrected the letter 'i' to 'A[?]', making it very frustrating when describing oneself in the first person.

Although Apple hasn't revealed what went wrong, it gave customers instructions for how to fix the flaw, which involves manually changing the settings in the device's keyboard settings. But now the general update fixes this automatically.

The problem arose when iPhone X users tried to announce to the world they'd got a new iPhone. One user posted a picture of his woes on Twitter. He'd been typing into Snapchat support the query "! [?] don't know why these symbols pop up ! [?] type the letter between H and J" when the issue became apparent. He wrote the caption "Anyone know how to fix an iPhone that sends symbols instead of the letter “i” when typing? It’s not a keyboard shortcut, I checked. See images below. #AskTwitter

Users also took to Apple's own support site to express their confusion.

"For some reason, autocorrect keeps changing the letter 'I' to some sort of code, as is visible in the screenshot attached. I’ve reset my phone repeatedly and restored the autocorrect dictionary to factory, yet the issue persists," the original post said. To date, 1,472 people have said on the post they're also experiencing the problem.


iPhone X pre-orders outstrip stock

Demand for the iPhone X has surpassed the number Apple has available, the company has revealed, ending rumours the device isn't as in demand as previous Apple flagship smartphones.

In fact, demand for those wishing to upgrade their handset or buy their first iPhone is so high, Apple has now been forced to push back the availability date to five to six weeks from now, rather than sticking to its original estimates that it'll ship on November 3rd.

“We can see from the initial response, customer demand is off the charts,” an Apple spokeswoman told Reuters. “We’re working hard to get this revolutionary new product into the hands of every customer who wants one, as quickly as possible.”

The iPhone X sold out in less than 10 minutes after going up for pre-sale on Friday morning. The demand was so high, Apple's servers crashed and the waiting list for the handset increased to over a month.

However, there are still concerns Apple is behind schedule when it comes to producing the device, because a number of the parts, including the TrueDepth camera system that is required for its FaceID authentication technology to work is in short supply.


3 million iPhone X handsets expected at launch

Apple will prepare 3 million iPhone X devices for the launch day, according to latest rumours, with more stock arriving when the company has fixed production problems it's currently experiencing.

The source of the rumour is from KGI Securities (Via 9to5Mac), a company well-known for being accurate with its Apple predictions. It explained between 2-3 million of the devices will be made available for November 3rd, with more to come in the following weeks as availability of the circuit boards, wide angle camera parts and the depth-sensing infrared dot projectors that Apple has been struggling to acquire increases.

The author of the note, Ming-Chi Kuo, said the biggest hurdle for the iPhone X is actually the circuit board for the antenna as it requires special materials and processes to be manufactured - not to mention the testing Apple wants to do on them all to make sure they reach its standards.

Although 2-3 million devices sounds like a lot of devices, the company usually ships around 10 million in the opening weekend of a new launch, leaving quite a large discrepancy.

It could have a significant impact on Apple's fourth quarter shipments, KGI said, dropping its predictions from 30-35 million to 25-30 million units for the end of the year. The analyst firm does think this means the manufacturer's figures will increase substantially in the first quarter of 2018 though, increasing by as much as 50%.


All 2018 Apple iPhones could adopt Face ID from the iPhone X

Apple could be introducing its Face ID security technology to the entire iPhone line up, scrapping TouchID and instead focusing on its facial recognition technology.

The news comes from prominent tipster KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, who thinks all new devices under the iPhone moniker launching in 2018 will feature the 3D recognition technology rather than just the flagship.

Previously, Kuo said he thought Apple might actually scrap Face ID if sales of the iPhone X weren't particularly impressive, but he's now changed his mind and thinks the end of Touch ID is nigh.

The analyst added in his note to investors that implementing Face ID in all future iPhones will mean its entire collection could include edge-to-edge displays rather than its competitors where only the flagships have such impressive screen real estate.

He added including the TrueDepth cameras and Face ID into all of its smartphones will help the company "capitalise on its clear lead in 3D sensing design and production for smartphones.”

Although some of Apple's Chinese rivals are looking at integrating fingerprint technology into the edge-to-edge displays, Kuo doesn't think Apple will follow this strategy because 3D sensing provides a bigger opportunity across the board - not just for the security of devices.


iPhone X won't show notification if someone's looking over your shoulder

According to Phone Arena, if anyone's trying to look over your shoulder or someone whose face isn't registered with Face ID, it will hide the content of notifications.

You will be able to see where the notification's come from, for example, if it's an email, it will tell your inbox has a new message waiting for you, but you won't be able to see who it's from or the subject line of the email, which was previously the case on iPhones.

Rather than showing the information, it will just flag up the word "notification" alongside the source app's icon instead.

The feature has also been added to other iPhones in the iOS 11 update, although you'll need to choose to only have notifications show the source and it doesn't change according to whose face is looking at the screen, it'll just block notification content to everyone.

In related news, it seems the iPhone's Face ID may be added to the iPad Pro line refresh n 2018 and although it hasn’t been confirmed nor denied by Apple, well-known Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo thinks it's a distinct possibility for the new business-centric tablet line.


iPhone 8 sales performance could be down due to iPhone X

Apple could be very disappointed by iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus sales on launch weekend, with queues shorter than any other launch in the company's recent history.

As predicted by analysts when the iPhone X was just a rumour, launching a flagship device a few months after lower-cost, lower-specced devices will result in fewer sales and this seems to have been proven correct, with The Metro reporting there seemed to be hardly any demand based on the first weekend's sales.

Although Apple hasn't - and probably won't for some time - announced the number of shipments over this first weekend, judging by demand, it is significantly lower than previous iPhone launches.

This could be very concerning for the smartphone manufacturer, especially as analysts think the November iPhone X launch date could well be pushed into next year because some of the parts to make the edge-to-edge display are in short supply (full story below).

"The people that are considered the die-hard fans are more than likely, I suspect, to wait for the iPhone X in November," founder of news site Pocket-lint Stuart Miles told The Metro. "I still expect the iPhone 8 to do very well, but not to see the usual rush to get it first, as the people that this phone is now aimed at aren’t the people who queue up over night."


Apple's flagship may not arrive until 2018

The iPhone X may not be available until 2018, despite the company saying it'll be released in November, according to well-connected analyst Ming-Chi Kuo.

Because the iPhone X uses so many new parts, many of which are proving hard to source, the ship date for the device could be delayed for months, Kuo explained, meaning Apple could miss out on crucial Christmas sales.

However, he doesn't think it will affect pre-orders, so your best bet of getting the device quickly is to pre-order it on 27 October.

Although it may affect Apple's 2017 sales figures, he doesn't think many will be put off ordering it because its "full screen design and facial recognition features will drive replacement demand for the iPhone X," he told MacRumors.

However, those desperate to get their hands on a new iPhone before the year is out could instead opt for the iPhone 8, which will be released in the next few weeks. Although it doesn't pack the same high-end features as the iPhone X, it's a decent upgrade from the iPhone 7.


Internet offers up first reactions to new iPhone X

Apple this week announced the much-anticipated iPhone X at its launch event in Cupertino,

revealing a host of new features and a premium design that moves away from previous iterations.

As expected, the internet has been awash with reaction since, with industry observers offering their

thoughts on everything from the new facial-recognition feature to the smartphones steep pricing.

TechCrunch praised the iPhone X as Apple’s “best phone ever” and noted that the handset feels as

premium in the hand as its price would suggest.

“The X is the best iPhone, no questions, and it’s quickly jumped to the top of the best phones,

period. Yeah, it’s going to cost you, but you already knew that,” the website said.

Comparing the iPhone X to Android devices such as the Galaxy S8, The Verge offered that, while it is the best iPhone to date, the device is not as hot as its rivals in the spec department.

“The iPhone X may be the most powerful iPhone ever, but compared to almost any other Android

flagships, it’s hard to pick out a category where it leads the pack — at least on paper when

comparing raw specifications,” The Verge said.

“But if Apple has shown one thing time and again with every iPhone generation, it’s that

optimization of hardware and software matter just as much — if not more — than the hard numbers of which phone has more RAM, which is why Apple’s phones tend to perform so well, even with comparatively weaker hardware.”

SlashGear described the X as “familiar, and yet so very different” and called Apple’s new flagship

“stunning” in appearance – particularly praising the new OLED screen.

Despite hailing the smartphone as “beautiful” and its build as “fantastic”, the iPhone X’s screen bezels were a small concern over at Engadget, however.

“… Given that Apple's competition has done an incredible job trimming the cruft from around their displays, I can't help but feel that the iPhone X's design doesn't have the same kind of impact as, say, the Essential or Samsung's recent Galaxys,” Engadge said.


Apple launches iPhone X alongside iPhone 8 and 8 Plus

Apple has officially announced the iPhone X, alongside the iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus at its launch event, putting an end to the relentless rumours around the next iteration smartphone.

As its name would suggest, the iPhone X is the top of the range device, with an edge-to-edge 5.8-inch "Super Retina" display.

Face ID is integrated into the screen so you can identify yourself and unlock the device just by looking at the display. It uses more than 30,000 invisible dots to create a map of your face. Because the home button has disappeared, you can get to all your apps and functions just by swiping up anywhere on the screen.

This 3D camera tech is also employed for taking selfies with allegedly "studio-quality lighting effects." It can also be used to create 12 Animoji - a lighthearted feature that turns your face into a 3D animal emoji. The photographic capabilities are mirrored in the rear camera too, which has been significantly improved in this latest iPhone iteration.

The iPhone X runs on Apple's A11 Bionic processor, utilising a neural engine that can process up to 600 billion operations per second. It comprises six cores in total and is 70% faster than the A10 Fusion. It also includes a three-core GPU that's up to 30% faster than the old processor.

Wireless charging is built into the iPhone X's hardware, although the iPhone X's new battery will last up to two hours longer than the battery in the iPhone 7.

Bothdevices take on Apple's new all-glass design, with an aluminium frame underpinning the device. The iPhone 8 features a 4.7in Retina HD display, while the iPhone 8 Plus' display measures 5.5in.

Both run on Apple's new A11 Bionic six-core CPU as detailed above. They also take advantage of Apple's improved imaging technology and the iPhone 8 Plus uses the company's dual camera tech. They also both include wireless charging, using the Qi standard and although you can buy the ApplePad for at-home charging, it will also work with many other mainstream wireless charging pads.

The iPhone X is available to pre-order from 27 October and it will be available from 3 November. The iPhone 8 and 8 Plus are available to pre-order from 15 September, with a release date on 22 September.

The iPhone X will set you back from £999 for the 64GB version and £1,149 for the 256GB capacity, while the iPhone 8 will start from £699 for 64GB, going up to £849 for the 256GB capacity. The iPhone 8 Plus will cost £799 for 64GB or £949 if you want to boost that up to 256GB.


The iPhone 8 will launch at 12th September Apple event

Apple is expected to unveil the new iPhone 8 on 12 September, with the announcement set to be the first to take place at the company's brand new Steve Jobs theatre.

The Cupertino firm has now sent out media invites for the event - which also looks set to feature the unveiling of a new Apple TV and Watch, as well as the new iPhone 7s and 7s Plus handsets.

Should Apple follow its traditional process, pre-orders for the new premium handset will open a few days after on 15 September, with general release expected to follow a week later.

The event is scheduled to begin at 10am PST (6pm BST) and Apple will be live streaming the release over on its website or via Apple TV's Apple Events app.

Rumours surrounding the iPhone 8's specs suggest the handset will sport a considerable redesign, which will include a 5.8-inch OLED edge-to-edge display, Apple's A11 processor, wireless charging capability and vertically-aligned dual cameras on the rear of the device.

The smartphone has also been tipped to drop the physical Home button - but is expected to boast new facial recognition technology, as well as a rear-facing Touch ID sensor.


iPhone 8 tipped to enter mass production in September

The upcoming iPhone 8 could be set to enter mass production in September, before officially launching alongside the iPhone 7s, according to the latest reports.

Renowned KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo made the claims in a research note obtained by AppleInsider, which also tipped the upcoming device to be available in three colours: black, silver and gold.

Despite earlier rumours of a launch delay for the iPhone 8, Kuo believes Apple will still release the handset in September alongside the iPhone 7s after apparently addressing initial supply chain concerns.

The smartphone is set to enter product verification testing towards the end of august, the analyst said, with mass production to begin in mid-September.

Despite this, Kuo did add that Apple’s new premium handset would be in “extremely short supply” upon release - with the supply chain only tipped to manufacture 2-4million units during this quarter. The number is set to increase quickly, however, with the total predicted to reach between 45- 50 million units this year.

Kuo further revealed that all of the new iPhone handsets will feature fast charging – but users could be required to purchase a Lightning-to- USB-C cable and adapter to use it, AppleInsider reported.


iPhone 8's face scanner could work hands-free

The iPhone 8's face scanner may work without even picking the phone up, allowing you to simple look at the screen when it's laid flat on a table to turn the screen on.

The iPhone 8 will apparently use a biometric facial recognition sensor called BiometricKit that allows the user to just look at the device's screen in order to disable the screen lock. It was hidden in the code of the company's HomePod speaker, which suggested the technology will connect via infra-red.

The facial recognition technology is internally referred to by Apple as Pearl and it's now come to light that it will be able to recognise faces even if you're not holding the phone up to your face.

Apple Insider said website iHelp BR uncovered strings in the feature's code including "AXRestingPearlUnlock" and "," which would suggest it would work while the device is resting on a table and this latest intel would support previous claims that the facial unlock feature of the iPhone ould be able o confirm the user's identity in less than a few hundred milliseconds.

The facial unlock technology is said to be replacing the fingerprint scanner, which seems to be missing on some of the more recent renders.


Apple's iPhone 8 could sport rear-facing fingerprint scanner

Apple's upcoming iPhone 8 could come equipped with a rear-facing fingerprint scanner, Tech Radar reports, whilst the handset may still ship in September despite production delays.

Photos of an early prototype have emerged on Chinese social media website Baidu, appearing to show a slot on the reverse of the device for a fingerprint scanner.

If the images prove to be genuine, the move could put to bed earlier talk of Touch ID tech being built in to the iPhone 8's screen. As Tech Radar noted, however, the images' origin is unclear.

Meanwhile, JP Morgan analyst Rod Hall has said that production delays surrounding new OLED screens will not affect the new iPhone's rumoured September release - but will reduce the amount of handsets available at launch, the publication said.

The analyst said that he does believe the delay to be genuine and, as a result, the amount of units available upon release could be as small as two million - as opposed to earlier predictions of nine million.

However, Hall also predicted that, once production increases, Apple will be on course to shift 42 million handsets by the end of 2017.


iPhone 8 may ship with just 3GB RAM

Apple's upcoming iPhone 8 flagship may arrive with just 3GB RAM, instead of the 4GB some had been hoping for, a new report from market research firm TrendForce suggests.

Analyst Avril Wu said the move comes as a result of "spiking costs" of mobile DRAM in the supply chain which, as a result, will "constrain" smartphone manufacturers' attempts to increase the memory on their products.

The situation is also expected to continue throughout the entirety of 2017, she explained, meaning that those wanting a 4GB RAM iPhone may have to wait until next year.

Of the three big Apple handsets expected in 2017, TrendForce predicted that the 5.8in AMOLED iPhone 8 model will ship with 3GB RAM, as will the expected 5.5in iPhone 7s Plus. The regular 4.7in iPhone 7s will stick with the 2GB that the current iPhone 7 possesses.

Despite the supply issues, the research firm added that the average memory content of smartphones will still increase this year – thanks to the increased shipments of handsets sporting 3GB RAM.

"Since mobile devices became a major application segment for DRAM market, shipments and average memory content of smartphones have been closely connected with the relationship between the overall supply and demand," Wu explained.

"Hence, the current wave of price surge will test smartphone makers' ability to effectively manage their supply chains."


iPhone 8 may feature all-screen display

Apple's upcoming iPhone 8 could sport a bezel-less design with Touch ID on the reverse of the handset, if the latest rumour proves accurate.

Renowned leaker Sonny Dickson posted an image on Twitter of what appears to be a potential design for the device.

The photo shows the back panel of what is claimed to be the iPhone 8, depicting a handset that moves away from the designs of previous iterations.

Spaces in the panel indicate a vertically-aligned dual-camera that has been positioned to one side of the device - as well as a fingerprint scanner placed below the Apple logo in the centre of the phone. The relocation of the scanner suggests that Apple could then drastically reduce the bezels and increase screen size on the front of the iPhone 8.

What's less clear is what's on the bottom part of the phone, but does appear to indicate that Apple will continue without the traditional headphone jack.

The leak also seemingly corroborates an iPhone 8 render that surfaced on Chinese social media site Weibo last week (via SlashLeaks).

That image supposedly originated from a technical imaging computer used by iPhone manufacturer Foxconn, as reported by TechRadar, and similarly depicts fewer bezels, a side-aligned dual-camera setup and a fingerprint scanner on the rear of the handset.

18/04/2017: Apple faces issues integrating Touch ID into iPhone 8 displays

Integration of Touch ID fingerprint sensors into iPhone 8 displays is apparently causing Apple some production issues, according to Cowen and Company analyst Timothy Arcuri.

In a research note seen by Apple Insider, the analyst told investors that his own supply chain field work highlighted yield issues with components for the feature.

"For the 5.8-inch OLED version, the biggest bottleneck remains integrating an under-glass fingerprint sensor into the display - the current yield rate of Apple's in-house AuthenTec solution remains low and AAPL seems unwilling to use other vendors' products," Arcuri explained.

The analyst proposed three potential solutions, should the Cupertino company not be able to overcome the issues.

Firstly, Apple could ditch Touch ID from the 5.8-inch iPhone altogether and rely solely on facial recognition. Arcuri did, however, add that this option was unlikely due to security concerns.

A second solution would involve placing the Touch ID sensor on the reverse of the handset - but the analyst again said this would not be a user-friendly alternative.

The final option put forward was that Apple could delay production of the iPhone 8 but still announce the device alongside the iPhone 7s.

As reported by MacRumors, Arcuri explained to investors that Apple aims to finalise its fingerprint sensor specification by May, but if the yield issues persist, production of the next-generation device may be postponed until September instead of July to August.

The analyst still expects the iPhone 8 to be announced in September, however, but the knock-on effect may be that supplies will be extremely limited or even unavailable until "later in the year".

06/03/2017: iPhone 8 could cost less than first expected

Reports claiming that the iPhone 8 will retail for upwards of $1000 may be wide of the mark, according to UBS analyst Steven Milunovich.

In a new investor's note, reported by CNBC, the analyst said the 64GB OLED premium device will cost $70 to $90 more to produce than the iPhone 7 Plus – which equates to a retail price of between $850 and $900 before tax.

Consumers are unlikely to be put off by the price increase, Milunovich added, saying the anniversary device will spark a "bulge in buying". As a result, sales of the model will make up 45% of overall iPhone shipments in fiscal 2018, he predicted.

Despite being tipped to sport a smaller screen size than the Samsung Galaxy S8 Plus, the iPhone 8 is expected to boast a number of differential features that will appeal to customers.

"Apple's top model will be at a display size disadvantage to Samsung's Galaxy S8 Plus," said Milunovich. "We still think Apple will choose to price its top model relative to Samsung's top model, but remain cautious on how much higher Apple could ultimately go on price given a smaller display.

"Offsetting this display size differential is the fact that the OLED iPhone could have features not included in the Galaxy S8 Plus, such as a front facing 3D sensing camera, embedded fingerprint sensor and higher quality facial recognition."

Meanwhile, Chinese website Economic Daily News (via Digitimes) reports the iPhone 8 launch may be postponed until October or November, as opposed to the traditional launch month of September.

The website attributes the potential delay to "technical issues" with the lamination process of curved OLED panels, in addition to difficulties with the adoption of a new 3D sensing system.

20/03/2017: iPhone 8 will feature wrap-around screen

Fresh iPhone 8 rumours suggest it will have a completely new design, including a 5.8in wrap around screen, taking some design elements of the Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge. The rumours come courtesy of analyst Timothy Arcuri of Cowen and Company, who also claimed the fingerprint reader could be integrated into the display rather than a separate button.

However, another source, KGI Research analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, thinks the iPhone 8 will include a 'function area' at the bottom of the screen, much like the MacBook's Touch Bar rather than integrating the TouchID fingerprnt reader into the screen of the device.

However, this function area will use new biometric technology to identify a user rather than the company's TouchID, including facial recognition, although how it will integrate facial recognition into a bar rather than the camera is unclear.

“The most apparent change of the OLED iPhone will be a full-screen design, along with the elimination of the Home button and current fingerprint recognition technology," Kuo wrote. "Of particular note is that we expect the OLED iPhone will adopt a 5.8in physical OLED panel. But the actual display area will be around 5.15in, and the rest will be an area for functions (eg allocation of virtual buttons).”

23/02/2017: New report details iPhone 8 predictions

A series of spec predictions for the iPhone 8 have been detailed in a new report by TrendForce, which also predicted that Apple will manufacture 100 million iPhone 8 devices this year.

The market research firm said Apple could be set to drop the 32GB iPhone model when the upcoming iPhone 8 range lands, with this year's iteration instead starting from 64GB. The highest storage capacity is said to stand at 256GB, in line with the iPhone 7.

The report added that there will also be three different models available - with the iPhone 8 arriving in 4.7in, 5.5in and high-end 5.8in options.

If accurate, the 5.8in screen will be the largest in iPhone history and will be the only model to sport an AMOLED display. 3D Sensing technology will also be included, enabling facial recognition and various AR features.

"Based on the information from the supply chain, one of the three new iPhone devices that will be released in this year's second half will be a top-of-line model with standout features," TrendForce's report said. "This high-end iPhone will be the first in the device series to have an AMOLED display that is 5.8 inches in size and 2K in resolution."

The firm added that the high-end model will also lack a physical Home button - but said it will not sport a curved display due to "issues with the 3D glass in terms of production yield and drop test results".

Both the 4.7in and 5.5in versions are predicted to feature LCD displays, said TrendForce.

06/02/2017: iPhone 7 helps Apple to record breaking quarter

Apple has reported its first sales increase in nine months thanks to the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus, with CEO Tim Cook saying Apple sold more iPhones than ever before in its latest quarter.

Strong sales of the flagships over the Christmas period pushed the company to its best quarter ever - posting revenue of $78.4 billion (3% increase over the same quarter of 2015).

Sales of the iPhone accounted for $54.3 billion of that figure - with Macs ($7.2 billion), iPads ($5.5 billion) and other products ($4 billion) accounting for the other major hardware areas. Services racked up $7.1 billion.

In terms of units, Apple said it sold 78.3 million iPhones over the final three months of 2016, up 5% from the same quarter the previous year.

CEO Cook said: "We're thrilled to report that our holiday quarter results generated Apple's highest quarterly revenue ever, and broke multiple records along the way."

Citing research firm Localytics, BBC News added that the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus now account for approximately 17% of Apple's iPhone sales.

Apple did offer a little caution, however, noting that many customers were holding off on upgrading their devices in anticipation for the next iteration - meaning such strong growth may not continue.

20/01/2017: Decline in iPhone 7 sales predicted

Sales of the iPhone 7 are set to decline in 2017 as "buyers start anticipating new phones", according to financial services firm Morgan Stanley (via Investor's Business Daily).

In a recent note to clients, Morgan Stanley analyst Katy Huberty lowered her sales estimates for the fiscal year by 7%, whilst cutting her revenue prediction by 3%.

Huberty explained that the weaker demand would come as a result of iPhone users holding off for newer models - with a major design overhaul tipped for the iPhone 8.

However, she raised sales estimates for the fiscal year of 2018 due to a "supercycle" that will see a large number of current iPhone 6s and 7 users upgrade to the next generation of handsets.

She added that the next iPhone iteration is expected to sport a variety of new features as part of its design overhaul.

"We expect compelling new features such as AMOLED displays, new casing and wireless charging (in the iPhone 8), and think Apple could implement select features only in higher-end models," Huberty said, predicting that this will "likely raise prices at the high-end".

Apple's earnings for this holiday quarter are revealed on 31 January.

12/01/2017: iPhone 7 sales boost iOS share

The iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus were the best-selling smartphones in the US in the period ending November 2016, according to the latest OS sales report from Kantar Worldpanel ComTech.

The handsets were joined in the top three by the iPhone 6s - with the devices making up 31.3 percent of all sales and helping iOS boost its market share to 43.5 percent. Android, by comparison, saw its sixth successive period of decline, falling to 55.3 percent.

Apple's current flagships also performed well in Great Britain, helping iOS to a 48.3 percent market share and closing the gap on Android (49.6 percent). The figures mark a 9.1 percentage point increase for the year ending November 2016.

Both iOS and Android made gains in the big five European markets (EU5) thanks to the decline of Windows, Kantar's report says.

Dominic Sunnebo, Business Unit Director for Kantar Worldpanel ComTech Europe, said: "In the EU5 countries, Android accounted for 72.4% of smartphone sales during this period, with iOS at 24.6%, a strong year-on-year uptick for both ecosystems as Windows' share declined to 2.8%. For Android, this represented a 2.8 percentage point decline from the October period, while strong sales of iPhone 7 boosted iOS.

"The holiday period is always strong for Apple, but it remains to be seen if demand for the latest devices will level out in the first quarter of 2017."

23/12/2016: iPhone 7 Plus users reporting camera issues

Some iPhone 7 Plus owners have been reporting problems with their device’s camera.

According to BGR, a number of users have said that their handset displays a plain black screen when opening the Camera app. Some have even reported seeing a notification reading: "Emergency. iPhone needs to cool down."

The website says it began receiving emails regarding the issue "about three weeks ago" – with complaints increasing in regularity since.

Now, a Reddit thread dedicated to the problem has been started, with a series of comments confirming that the issue has affected numerous iPhone 7 Plus users.

"I opened up the camera app only to be met with a black image preview," Reddit user teriakiwok explained. "Sometimes I can get an image however it's either tinted green or purple and was once accompanied by a screen stating 'Emergency iPhone needs to cool down' when the handset wasn’t even slightly warm."

The issue has also been posted on Apple’s support forum, with one iPhone 7 Plus owner commenting: "I was travelling abroad and my iPhone 7 Plus camera just stopped working. I have tried soft reset, restarts, restoring and no luck."

The reports do suggest, however, that Apple is alert to the problem and has been fixing or replacing the handsets at its in-store Genius Bars.

16/12/2016: iPhone 7 sales lower than anticipated

New data suggests iPhone 7 sales could be lower than initially anticipated this quarter.

Citing recent information from Nikkei Asian Review, Barrons reveals that some Taiwan-based iPhone part suppliers have seen revenue decline due to weaker than predicted iPhone sales. The report covers 19 Taiwan companies – including firms such as Hon Hai Precision, Largan Precision and TPK Holding – and many of which are contacted by Apple.

For the month of November, the companies’ collective sales have declined by 0.04 percent compared with the same month in 2015. It was also the third month of decline for the group – despite sales for 11 of the 19 firms actually rising (four more than October).

The article further reveals a 47 percent increase for the company that manufactures the iPhone’s main processors - Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing (TSM). However, those positive results were not shared across the board – with six out of nine Apple-contracted Taiwanese companies seeing revenue declines. When excluding TSM’s high increase, the average revenue decline was 4.7 percent, the report found.

More information will be revealed in January when Apple announces its sales figures for the quarter.

14/10/2016: SIM only iPhone 7 released in US

Following the release of the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus last month, Apple is now selling unlocked versions of the handsets in the US.

While early adopters were forced into contracts, customers can now get SIM free devices that will work on any US network, according to Apple. Currently, the unlocked devices are only available for purchase from the Apple store.

Prices for the iPhone 7 will start at $649 while the larger 'Plus' begins at $769. The unlocked versions come in the same variety of colours and storage options available to contract customers.

Reports suggest that stocks of the unlocked device are limited, with waiting times of up to 4 weeks for most models, according to the Verge. If you're looking for a jet-black iPhone 7 Plus, expect to wait up to two months for delivery.

Customers in the UK, Australia and Canada have been able to buy a SIM only variant from the Apple store since launch.


iPhone 7 reviews

Since the iPhone 7 was released last week, the internet has been awash with reaction and reviews of Apple’s new flagship device.

Apple has introduced several updated features with the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus – but anyone that was looking for an all-encompassing refresh with this model will have to wait a while longer.

Alphr’s David Court gives the smartphone four stars out of a possible five in his review - but does begin by explaining he is “left a little cold by the iPhone 7 Plus”.

Addressing the lack of 3.5mm headphone jack, the review states that “for most users it will make no difference whatsoever” – citing the inclusion of the Lightning-equipped EarPods and Lightning-to-3.5mm adapter that comes in the box.

The anodised black reverse of the handset receives praise as does the improved sound quality of the devices two speakers. The review adds that the new Taptic Engine Home Button should make the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus more reliable phones due to its solid state.

In terms of camera performance of the dual-lens iPhone 7 Plus, outdoor shots were considerably improved - but low-light indoor images were a little disappointing.

“It's undoubtedly the best phone Apple has ever made, and the camera puts clear water between the Plus and its smaller sibling that goes beyond just screen size,” the review concludes.

IT Pro also gives the iPhone 7 a rating of four stars, summarising that it is “the fastest phone we’ve ever tested” and noting its “excellent” camera.

However, in contrast to Alphr’s review, the lack of headphone jack is noted as a negative of the device – whilst the jet black option is described as feeling “tacky”.

“Apple's latest iPhone hits all the familiar notes you'd expect it to, and while it's still an amazing device, there's nothing here that we haven't seen before,” Adam Shepherd's review concludes. “If you're due for an upgrade, you're unlikely to be disappointed, but don't rush out to buy one.”


iPhone 7: first reactions

The new iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus have been announced – and reactions to Apple’s changes have been a mixed affair so far.

Whilst the latest flagship does not feature a drastic redesign, there are a couple of stand-out changes – such as the lack of a headphone jack and improved camera setup.

The removal of the headphone jack in favour of the Lightning Port may be an initially-frustrating experience for users – but the move may see other manufacturers follow suit once initial displeasure subsides.

With a major design-overhaul strongly tipped for the 2017 iPhone iteration, Apple has generally focused on smaller-but-useful improvements this time around.

The Telegraph notes that it is the first time since the iPhone’s debut that Apple has retained a design for three consecutive years, adding: “If you’re upgrading from the 6 or 6S, a lot of people won’t even notice that you’ve bought a new phone at all.”

Macworld Executive Editor Susie Ochs, however, writes that first impressions of the devices were underwhelming. She said: “I found the iPhone 7 ho-hum—it’s faster and it’s got a better camera, but a lot of the changes (the new Home button, the dual speakers) are too subtle to make much of a first impression.”

The new pressure-sensitive Home button is another of the standout new features, with the iPhone 7 adopting the same haptic-feedback technology that is present on the latest Mac Books.

Tech Crunch says: “It’ll take some getting used to. It’s not a bad sensation, but it’s certainly different. And getting haptic feedback courtesy of the Taptic Engine with a press is decidedly less satisfying than an honest-to-goodness physical button.”

The website does add, however, that the button is less likely to break and that it is one of the stronger additions – along with the increased battery life of the handset.

Geoffrey Fowler of The Wall Street Journal offers that the iPhone 7 “delivers practical improvements” on a proven design - but notes that “Apple is only catching up to the competition, not flying past it.”


Major changes unlikely for iPhone 7

It is unlikely the iPhone 7 will feature major changes, according to a new report by the Wall Street Journal.

The article claims that Apple is set to cut loose from its typical two-year cycle for major upgrades – with the bigger changes set to be implemented on the iPhone 8 instead.

However, one change that is reportedly set to happen is the removal of the 3.5mm headphone jack.

Corroborating previous rumours, the lack of a headphone jack will mean the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus handsets will be slimmer than the current 6S model - with users able to use the Lightning port to connect headphones.

The removal of the headphone port will also improve the handsets’ water resistance.

In terms of appearance, the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus will effectively resemble the current 6S handsets – with display sizes set to remain at 4.7 inches and 5.5 inches respectively.

It is claimed the major changes are being shelved until 2017 to coincide with the 10th anniversary of the iPhone.

According to the Wall Street Journal’s source, one such feature for next year’s iteration is a curved OLED display with embedded TouchID - signalling the end of the Home button in 2017.

An extract from the Journal states: “At a meeting with an Apple executive last month, one of the company's China-based engineers asked why this year's model lacked a major design change in keeping with Apple's usual two-year cycle. The answer, one person at the meeting recalled, was that the new technology in the pipeline will take time to implement.

“People familiar with the matter said some features that Apple hopes to integrate into iPhones, such as curved screens, weren't ready for this year's models.”


iPhone 7 to keep headphone jack?

The iPhone 7 could include a headphone jack after all, according to reports.

It has long been suggested that Apple had been planning to remove the feature from its upcoming flagship – potentially replacing the 3.5mm jack with a wireless alternative.

Reports had speculated that the new iPhone incarnation would make use of Bluetooth or the Lightning port for audio as part of the redesign – while the lack of 3.5mm port would allow for a slimmer handset.

Now, according to The Telegraph, images have surfaced from Rock Fix – a repair shop in Ganzhou, China – showing what is claimed to be the upcoming handset with a 3.5mm headphone jack.

Engadget adds that the repair company has also recently shared images showing that – if genuine - the latest model will be the first to include dual-SIM trays.

Rock Fix also reveals screen panels in the “two usual sizes” along with ScanDisk memory chips of up to 256GB and a dual-lens camera for the iPhone 7 Plus handset.

The shop owner also reportedly told Engadget that the antenna design will differ from the 6S model – although the antenna bands will still be present on the back of the phone.

This latest “leak” is the latest in a line of images that have surfaced.

Online retailer Oppomart recently updated its website to include iPhone 7 cases that users can pre-order – showing the iPhone 7 Plus model as having a Smart Connecter and the long-rumoured dual-lens camera.

However, the images on the Oppomart’s website did not show a headphone socket.


New iPhone 7 cases surface

A new range of protective cases for the upcoming iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus have surfaced online.

The images appear to confirm previous rumours of a dual-camera and Smart Connector for the larger, 5.5-inch Plus model.

Shoppers can now pre-order the iPhone 7 cases through online retailer Oppomart.

If accurate, the product images show the overall design of Apple’s upcoming flagship to be similar to the current 6s – the only key differences seemingly being the camera and Smart Connector.

The much-speculated dual camera for the 7 Plus handset can be seen from the pictures - with the smartphone sporting two camera holes aligned horizontally.

The flash and microphone are also positioned side-by-side next to the lens.

Cases for the smaller, 4.7-inch model are also revealed but do not include the Smart Connector or dual-lens camera

Additionally, the images appear to confirm the exclusion of a headphone socket, reinforcing long-running rumours that Apple may drop the feature in favour of wireless headphones.

It is currently unclear whether the case images are genuine or, as suggested by The Daily Mail, simply elaborate fakes designed to “attract customers to the firm.”

9 to 5 Mac also notes previous reports that Apple was prototyping the iPhone 7 Plus with a Smart Connector before deciding against it.

As a result, the website concludes that it is a possibility Oppomart’s cases may have been designed based on “outdated information.”

“We can’t confirm now, the factory said they got the phone’s drawing from Foxconn,” Oppomart states on its website.


iPhone 7 to come with 32GB base storage?

The iPhone 7 could feature 32GB storage for its base model, according to 9 to 5 Mac.

The website reports that IHS analyst Kevin Wang made the claim via Chinese social media – meaning Apple could finally be moving away from 16GB devices for its flagship range.

The analyst does not elaborate on the claim, but states: “Supply chain research shows that the new iPhone’s RAM is 2GB, ROM 32GB onwards.”

It would make the range the first since 2008 not to include the 16GB handset.

The current iPhone 6s range does not include a 32GB option – the only handsets available are 16GB, 64GB and 128GB.

9 to 5 Mac notes that the change could be good news for customers as many are finding that the current base model storage does not fulfil their storage needs.

16GB smartphones can store “just a few apps, photos and videos” and can be suitable for enterprise use – but the latest iPhones include capabilities such as 4K video recording that can consume considerable storage space.

In addition, larger storage options could be introduced to support the much-alleged new dual cameras on the upcoming flagship range.

Previous reports have also suggested the inclusion of a 256GB version to the range.

Also reported by 9 to 5 Mac, leaked images on Chinese social media site Weibo allegedly displayed a 256GB memory chip – which would make the upcoming range the first to include a chip of this kind.

However, these images reportedly also showed a 16GB and 64GB version – with the website assuming that the 16GB is “here to stay” at the time of reporting.


Latest rumour: iPhone 7 to be thicker then 6s?

A new iPhone 7 leak currently doing the rounds suggests Apple’s new models could actually be thicker than the 6s.

New schematics published by Czech site show the new 4.7 inch and 5.5-inch handsets as having a thickness of 7.2mm, reports 9 to 5 Mac. In comparison, the current iPhone 6 and 6s models have a thickness of 7.1mm.

The website reports that the images originated form a Chinese parts supplier – a source that has been proven reliable in the past.

This latest leak appears to confirm persistent reports that Apple will be removing the headphone jack on its upcoming flagship devices - instead, utilising the space with a second speaker grille.

The screen also appears to be redesigned with the image showing the handset to have a frameless display. However, 9 to 5 Mac add caution here, stating that - despite arguably being the most interesting element of the leak – this is “most likely to be a mistake.”

Also missing from the drawings is the front-facing camera – signifying either another mistake in the images or a camera that is integrated behind the screen.

The schematics for the iPhone 7 Plus model depict the Smart Connector on the bottom of the handset. It is reported that this will be used primarily for wireless charging rather than for an iPad Pro style keyboard cover.

Nothing has been confirmed so far for the flagships - but the unveiling of iOS 10 the WWDC 2016 event (June 13-17) could hint further at what Apple has in store for the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus.

The handsets themselves are widely expected to be announced at an event in September.


iPhone 7: four speakers and a new layout for rear camera?

A new iPhone 7 rumour doing the rounds suggests the smartphone will feature four speakers and a refreshed layout for the rear camera.

French blog has posted images supposedly showing the rear case prototype for the upcoming Apple flagship - supposedly taken from a promotional video by an Italian case manufacturer.

The photos appear to show two speaker grilles on the bottom of the handset and another on the top. Horizontal antenna lines are not visible and the space for the camera lens is larger than previous models, suggesting improved camera components.

Also corroborating with previous leaks, the images do not include a hole for a 3.5mm headphone jack – rumours have long suggested Apple will be replacing this with a Lightning connector and Bluetooth wireless headphones.

Reports up until now have, however, indicated that it would be the iPhone 7 Plus (5.5-inch screen) that will receive a new and improved dual-lens rear camera – but these images of the case show what appears to be a 4.7 inch model with a larger aperture.

9 to 5 Mac reasons that it seems “strange” that elements of this latest leak differ so strongly from previous suggestions - but also that the blog “could have been fed information from recent sources with information other leakers did not have.”

According to Mac Rumors, Steven Hemmerstoffer (author of the French blog post) notes that “it doesn’t seem viable for a speaker to sit so close to the camera module” unless the camera component layout has been redesigned and will now be vertically aligned inside the handset as opposed to horizontally.


iPhone 7: latest rumours

The iPhone 7 may not include a Smart Connector, latest rumours suggest.

Reports originating from Mac Otakara in Japan say that Apple has decided not to include the port on the upcoming flagship device.

Previous rumours had anticipated its inclusion after images of what appeared to be the iPhone 7 surfaced on a Chinese website earlier in the year.

Now Mac Otakara has said that Apple has changed its mind about incorporating the Smart Connector into the iPhone 7 after originally considering its inclusion on the smartphone.

The connector was originally seen on the iPad Pro and enables the transfer of both power and data between the device and accessories – such as the Smart Keyboard.

In other rumours, suggestions persist that the iPhone 7 will be water and dust-proof – with MacRumors commenting: “At least three previous reports have claimed the iPhone 7 will be waterproof over the past seven months, and dust proofing would be inherently plausible.

“Comparatively, the iPhone 6s is surprisingly water resistant, but not entirely waterproof.”

Taiwan’s DigiTimes also report the device could include a pressure-sensitive home button – following Apple being granted a patent for a “liquidmetal home button” in March.

The patented liquidmetal alloys boast several unique properties such as malleability, strength and corrosion resistance – as well as being light weight.

Apple as renewed its exclusive rights to the use of the alloy since 2010 and its inclusion as part of a new home button would allow it to deform under pressure but revert to its usual form when the device user removes their thumb or finger.


New touch-sensitive home button for iPhone 7?

Reports are circulating that suggest Apple is considering introducing a touch sensitive home button to sit completely flush with the phone's face.

The International Business Times quotes 9to5Mac, which says the iPhone 7 will feature haptic feedback motors like the one present on the Force Touch trackpad of Retina MacBook. It means that even though the iPhone 7 will come with a flat capacitive surface, it will create an illusion of a real Home button. Smartphones running on Android and Windows already feature touch-sensitive Home buttons, but the iPhone 7 would be the first Apple smartphone to feature it.

It adds that previous rumours have suggested that the iPhone 7 would feature a water- and dust-resistant chassis. The axing of the physical Home button to make way for a touch-sensitive one will help Apple completely seal the chassis of the phone, thus protecting it from damage through contact with water and dust.

According to The Week, Apple was recently granted a patent for a Liquidmetal home button that changes shape when pressure is applied to it but returns to the original once the user removes their finger or thumb. The company has held rights to use the material since 2010, but has yet to incorporate it into the design of any of its iOS devices.


iPhone 7S to boast OLED display?

Apple is reportedly considering switching to OLED in 2017.

With the iPhone 7 still yet to be announced, rumours have already emerged suggesting its 7S follow-up could incorporate OLED display panels.

According to MacRumors, The Korea Herald has reported that Samsung could begin to supply the iPhone manufacturer with “100 million units of 5.5-inch OLED panels on an annual basis” from next year – bringing it in line with the expected release of the ‘S’ model.

Samsung is said to be considering the deal – worth an estimated $2.59bn – following earlier rumours that it was planning to invest up to $7.47bn in manufacturing OLED equipment in order to cope with demand from Apple.

The display panels would provide richer and sharper colours than LED versions – whilst providing Apple with an opportunity to reduce the thickness of its smartphones.

In other speculation, KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has said that Apple may be set to pair new the new type of display with a wraparound, curved-glass case next year.

Kuo said: “We expect the 2017 new iPhone model to adopt a structural design similar to that of iPhone 4/ 4s, meaning it will be equipped with glass on both the front and back sides, and a metal frame surrounding the edges.

“The difference is that the new model will likely come with a curved screen and curved glass casing, with other important features including a 5.8-inch AMOLED display, wireless charging, and more biometric recognitions (facial or iris). Given the curved design, the new model may look smaller than an existing 5.5-inch iPhone.”


Apple to release three iPhone 7 models?

Apple could be set to release three iPhone 7 models this year, it has been claimed.

As well as the standard iPhone 7, the tech giant is reportedly planning two variations of the larger model: the iPhone 7 Plus and iPhone 7 Plus premium.

Kota Ezawa of Citi Research believes Apple will also stand up to camera improvements made by rival manufacturers in its premium offering with the inclusion of a dual camera.

The move would see Apple releasing an unprecedented four iPhones in 2016 – the iPhone SE, iPhone 7, iPhone 7 Plus and iPhone 7 Plus premium.

The analyst said: “We expect Apple to release two 5.5-inch iPhone 7 models but only include dual rear cameras in the high-end model.”

Apple had previously moved away from major upgrades to camera and display functionality in recent years, with many believing the manufacturers to have been trailing rivals in certain departments.

Ezawa explained: “In the last few years, Apple has added new features, including lightning connectors and haptic functionality, but the improvements in camera and display performance have been minor and there have been no dramatic changes.

“Overall, the adoption of customised components has declined. We believe this reflects a shift to a cost-focused strategy and that a stronger USD has been an important contributing factor.

“The number of iPhones that do not have a dual rear camera has increased and the number of haptic components has declined to one from two.”

The inclusion of a dual rear camera on the iPhone 7 had previously been suggested by KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo – although he did not foresee the introduction of a premium model to the market.


iPhone 7 rumour roundup

Apple’s upcoming flagship phone - the iPhone 7 - could boast a whole range of new features.

With rumours circulating well in advance of the big unveiling, industry observers have speculated that the new model could make use of a spectacular edge-to-edge 4K display.

Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has also suggested in reports that the phone could feature a curved screen and curved glass casing on the rear of the new, slimmer handset.

He also predicted the phone’s display would be AMOLED, meaning improved visuals with less drain on battery life. The phone could also be available with a screen larger than the iPhone 6 Plus – with early talk of a 5.8-inch screen for the new range.

The rear-facing camera could also be in for an upgrade, with rumours suggesting the phone will come armed with an impressive 20-megapixel lens – surpassing any previous iPhone offering.

Reports have also claimed the new flagship could provide 16GB of memory with the option to expand up to a further 256GB – which would comfortably match the demands of the modern smartphone.

Others have suggested the inclusion of a superfast WiFi replacement called ‘LiFi’ - which could provide a bi-directional transfer rate of up to 224GB per second – and use of Lightning Port instead of the usual 3.5mm headphone jack.

The iPhone 7 could then be followed by a new, premium version of the handset – currently being dubbed the ‘iPhone 7 Pro’.


New camera lens

More leaks, this time from Unbox Therapy. It would appear that the iPhone 7 while having mostly the same shape and size of the iPhone 6/6s, has a radically altered camera lens.

A video suggests that a new case for the next iPhone has an enlarged opening with the lens lower down the body, possibly a dual lens system that would enhance the photographic capabilities of the device. There might also be an optical zoom lens as well.

With an iPhone 6 inside the new case, it also looks like the iPhone 7 won’t have the headphone jack as Unbox Therapy couldn’t fit a headphone plug into the old iPhone through the new case as the opening wasn’t large enough.

The new iPhone could also have more storage than the MacBook Air. Italian gadget blog shows pictures of a 256GB SanDisk NAND flash memory chip that "could be appropriate for the next generation smartphone".

The memory looks smaller, giving credence to the rumour that the iPhone 7 could be a little thinner than the previous iPhone.


iPhone 7: no headphone jack confirmed?

New images released by the @onleaks Twitter account appear to confirm there will be no headphone jack on the new iPhone 7. According to Channel Pro's sister title, Alphr, the design mostly follows the iPhone 6s, with a flat back and curved edges.

Meanwhile, Apple has confirmed an event will be taking place on 21 March when the iPhone SE is expected to launch.


Apple to spring surprise third iPhone in September?

There are reports that Apple is set to unveil a third, image-focused iPhone when the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus launch in September.

A rumour claims Apple would be using a dual-camera setup for the iPhone 7 Plus, but new predictions suggest that the dual-camera array will appear on an additional third iPhone 7 model. It’s possible the new iPhone will be the same size as a Plus, but include the new dual-camera setup, according to Channel Pro’s sister title, Alphr, who suggests it may be called something like the iPhone 7 Pro and will be pushed as a super-charged phablet/camera replacement.


Two cameras for iPhone 7?

The iPhone 7 could sport not one, but two cameras at the rear, according to Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo at KGI securities.

Not only will there be dual cameras, but dual speakers too. According to MacRumors, the second speaker will likely take over space currently occupied by the 3.5mm headphone jack on current iPhones, meaning that headphones will have to be wireless to work with the new phone or use a Lightening connector instead.

A report by 9to5Mac, says that the device will sport a dual-camera system with optical zoom and 2-3x magnification using technology from Linx, a firm that Apple acquired a year ago. The multiple lenses could also allow the phone to produce a 3D image of whatever it was pointed at.

There are also strong rumours that the iPhone 7 will boast waterproofing after patent filings were discovered for ports that eject water. Dubbed “Electronic Device With Hidden Connector”, the patent demos a connector covered by a self-healing elastomer.

Apple could also be working on wireless charging, according to Bloomberg. The cutting edge tech could allow devices to be charged without a cable or indeed charging mat. But the likelihood of this is low as the technology is not slated to appear until 2017.

Another iPhone 7 upgrade could boost battery life, according to BGR. The upgrade could also improve WI-FI. This could be done by giving every chip inside the device what is called an electromagnetic interference (EMI) cover. By applying a coating, every chips would be shielded from stray radio waves.

This will improve wireless connectivity and chips can be placed closer together, making more room for a bigger battery. The technology is already used in the Apple Watch for the S1 System-in-Package (SiP) processor design.


Superfast WiFi for new iPhone 7?

The iPhone 7 could support a superfast WiFi replacement called LiFi.

Contained in the iOS 9.1 firmware, discovered by Twitter user kyoufujibaya, is a reference to “LiFi Capability”, alongside mentions of voice control and API compatibility.

The technology, developed at the University of Edinburgh, uses light from specialised LED bulbs to transmit binary data, rather than radio waves.

This means that rather than normal WiFi speeds, LiFi has been able to reach a staggering bi-directional transfer rate of 224Gb per second.

Unfortunately, it doesn’t work through obstacles and is still quite a long way from being a mainstream technology.

It’s possible that Apple is merely including the compatibility as a piece of future-proofing, should the technology catch on. It could also be in advance of some form of first-party LiFi technology from the company

Speculation is rife as to the state of the next iPhone. It’s been tipped as the first iDevice since the Apple Watch to feature wireless charging and has also been persistently rumoured to be ditching the 3.5mm headphone jack in favour of the Lightning port.

Another widely-circulated rumour is that Apple is going to release a smaller iPhone variant alongside the iPhone 7, similar to the iPhone 5c.

This particular story has been fuelled by public demand for a cheaper and more compact iPhone, rather than actual evidence, however.

Although AppleInsider reported that the rumours came from Ming-Chi Kuo, a previously accurate analyst for KGI, similar rumours surrounding the iPhone 6 and 6s proved unsubstantiated.

Daniel Todd

Dan is a freelance writer and regular contributor to ChannelPro, covering the latest news stories across the IT, technology, and channel landscapes. Topics regularly cover cloud technologies, cyber security, software and operating system guides, and the latest mergers and acquisitions.

A journalism graduate from Leeds Beckett University, he combines a passion for the written word with a keen interest in the latest technology and its influence in an increasingly connected world.

He started writing for ChannelPro back in 2016, focusing on a mixture of news and technology guides, before becoming a regular contributor to ITPro. Elsewhere, he has previously written news and features across a range of other topics, including sport, music, and general news.