7, only halfway through its first year and already totally
overshadowed by whatever is coming next. After all, 2017 marks
the iPhone’s 10th birthday, so Apple is reportedly gearing up
to make its anniversary edition extra special.
We’ll keep track of the latest rumors and how plausible they
are, and we’ll put them in one spot (this one!) so you can pop
on over whenever you want to read the latest.
If you passed on the iPhone 7 to wait for the iPhone 8—or the
iPhone 7s or whatever name Apple decides to use—it sounds like
the next phone could be the design refresh you were waiting
for. Just don’t expect the headphone jack to return.
What’s the latest?
The rumor: The iPhone 8 is gearing up to be
the most expensive iPhone ever released, but apparently Apple
is aiming to still make it less than $1,000. According
to Goldman Sachs analyst Simona Jankowski, the iPhone
8 will cost $999 for the 128GB model. The 256GB model, however,
will cross the thousand-dollar mark and be sold for $1,099,
according to Jankowski’s research
published on CNBC.
Plausible? We’ve previously heard that the
iPhone 8 would break the $1,000 barrier, and it makes sense
that the 256GB model crosses this threshold. And even though
the higher price tag might seem astronomical compared to
current models, it might be worth it. Jankowski seems confident
that sales of the iPhone 8 will actually send Apple’s stock
soaring because of all the new features. Analysts believe that
the all-new OLED display, virtual Home button, and wireless
charging will be enough to generate larger-than-usual demand
for a new iPhone. Tim Cook actually confirmed that recent sales
of the iPhone 7 had stalled because people were anticipating
upgrading to the iPhone 8, so we wouldn’t be surprised if Apple
decided to make the most out of all the hype for the next
iPhone and increase the price tag.
Concept video based on CAD schematic?
The rumor: A new concept
video has surfaced that renders some of the most prominent
rumors about the iPhone 8. The video showcases the iPhone 8’s
OLED display, as well as the vertically aligned rear camera
system. Based on a factory computer-animated design
schematic, the video is courtesy of French gadget leaker Steve
Hemmerstoffer, known as OnLeaks on
Plausible? Hemmerstoffer has a good track
record when it comes to iPhone rumors. Last year, he posted a
photo of the iPhone 7 case months before the device was
unveiled. However, even Hemmerstoffer admits the latest
video may not be 100 percent accurate since Apple is testing
various prototypes of the iPhone 8. “I can’t confirm this
is 100% accurate,” he
tweeted. Watch the video below.
When will it be launched?
The rumor: There are conflicting theories
regarding the iPhone 8’s launch window. Some have speculated
that Apple may miss the traditional September launch window
because a lot of custom-ordered parts, including pieces
for the display, wireless charging, and printed circuit boards,
won’t be ready by September, according to the
latest findings from Nikkei Asian Review. The iPhone
7s models are expected to come out on schedule, however.
In this report, an analyst from research company IHS Markit
confirmed that Samsung is now the exclusive OLED supplier for
the new iPhones, since Samsung specializes in manufacturing
curved smartphone displays. However, the analyst says that
“Samsung is facing challenges in delivering what Apple wants,”
even though they’ve cranked out close to 75 million curved
iPhone displays so far.
This is not the first time we’ve heard that Apple has faced
roadblocks during the iPhone 8’s production.This follows an
earlier report from reputable KGI analyst, Ming-Chi Kuo, which
reported that the iPhone 8 will be out in October or November
due to these supply issues. Previously, Digitimes
reported that Apple was facing delays in developing
its proprietary fingerprint sensor for the new OLED-equipped
iPhone 8. Additionally, Japanese news site Macotakara reported
that STMicroelectronics, the new supplier of the iPhone’s 3D
camera sensors, needed more time to ramp up mass production.
With all these production issues,
some reports even suggest that the iPhone 8 won’t come out
Then there are the analysts at JPMorgan who predict Apple will
take the wraps off its new iPhone at the Worldwide Developers
Conference in June, something the company hasn’t done since
2010. JPMorgan says in a note obtained by
9to5Mac that Apple won’t start selling the phone until fall
after previewing it at WWDC, which would fly in the face of
Plausible? At first, it seemed very
unlikely that Apple would miss its typical September launch
date. Plus, Digitimes doesn’t have the best track record when
it comes to iPhone rumors. But now that Nikkei Asian Review and
Ming-Chi Kuo are jumping on board, this rumor gets a
credibility boost. Apple is tinkering with assembling OLEDs for
the first time, as well as incorporating new fingerprint and
camera sensors—so if there was an iPhone model that requires a
little more time, the iPhone 8 would be it.
The JPMorgan prediction seems far less likely. Apple CEO Tim
Cook on the company’s second-quarter earnings call said that
people are now pausing their iPhone purchases because they see
rumors of upcoming iPhones and want to wait. Announcing an
iPhone 8 in June and not making it available to buy until
September would all but kill Apple’s iPhone business—at least
without hefty discounts to spur sales.
The rumor: The new iPhone will come with
wireless charging. A note by JPMorgan that was published
on CNBC revealed that the next iPhone will include a
wireless chip by Broadcom. The note did not specify which
wireless charging standard will be supported by the iPhone,
although Broadcom makes chips that support both Qi and
Furthermore, JPMorgan did not reveal which iPhone model will
have wireless charging. But an earlier report by KGI
Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo stated that Apple was
expected to add wireless
charging to all of its 2017 iPhones, including the
special anniversary iPhone 8, as well as
the next-generation 7s and 7s Plus.
Plausible? Yes. The addition of wireless
charging was one of the first reliable rumors we heard about
the forthcoming iPhone 8. In February, Apple
joined the Wireless Power Consortium behind the Qi
system, but the iPhone’s wireless charging could support PMA as
well. Samsung, a fellow consortium member, includes both Qi and
PMA capabilities in its Galaxy phones.
The addition of wireless charging would also explain Apple’s
move to using all-glass casing, another previously rumored
feature. Even though some metal and plastic smartphones have
wireless charging, using glass is faster and there are fewer
frequency disruptions. Apple could decide to limit the
feature to the iPhone 8, but with the 7s and 7s Plus expected
to be remade with all-glass casing, the addition of wireless
charging might encourage more people to upgrade. While the
iPhone 7s and 7s Plus models might lack OLED due to production
constraints, putting wireless charging would go a long way
toward making the next iPhone a must-buy.
Touch ID on the front?
New renderings show the version of iPhone 8 that everyone
seems to want: edge-to-edge OLED display with the Touch ID
fingerprint sensor hidden underneath the display, not placed on
the back. In addition, the renderings also show that the rear
cameras in a vertical alignment.
These iPhone 8 renderings seem to be inspired by a recent leak
of internal schematics that surfaced on
SlashLeaks. Those schematics also included a facial
recognition front-facing camera, an infrared sensor, a stacked
mainboard design, and two battery units.
Plausible? Certainly! The iPhone 8 is
rumored to have an extensive feature list, so even if not all
of them are true, a stacked mainboard design would not only be
plausible but necessary. And we’re crossing our fingers still
for a Touch ID sensor that’s not on the back of the device, so
these schematics make us happy for that reason, as well.
Touch ID on the back?
The rumor: Apple might move one of its
essential features, Touch ID, to the back of the iPhone 8.
According to Pacific Crest Securities analyst Andy Hargreaves,
Apple is having
technical issues integrating the Touch ID sensor right
on the display of the new virtual Home button. Apple might
forced to delay the production of the iPhone 8 in order to fix
the issue. Another possibility, according to Cowen and Company
analyst Timothy Arcuri, is that Apple will resort to placing
the Touch ID sensors on the back, similar to the new Galaxy S8
and the Pixel phones by Google. According to
Bloomberg, Apple has prototyped a version with Touch ID on
the back of the device, which leaker Sonny Dickson shared a
photo of on Twitter.
This design overview purportedly shows an iPhone 8 prototype.
Notice the fingerprint-sized cut-out on the back.
Plausible? Although we previously have
heard rumblings about a delay, it’s very unlikely for Apple not
to have all the features set at this point. Touch ID is such an
important part for enabling Apple Pay that it’s hard to imagine
a highly-anticipated iPhone 8 without it. And moving Touch ID
to the back of the device is not very intuitive if you want to
unlock your iPhone with your thumb or while it’s laying down
flat. It’s a design flaw we hope Apple doesn’t succumb to, but
if we have to choose between Touch ID on the back or no Touch
ID at all…we’ll begrudgingly accept the former.
Another potential reason for a fingertip-sized cut-out on the
back of the iPhone casing is wireless charging, which is a
rumor we’ve been hearing over and over again. But if Samsung
couldn’t manage to put a fingerprint sensor in the Galaxy S8
due to technical issues, Apple might have a serious problem.
We hope Apple doesn’t pull a Samsung and stick Touch ID on the
back of the iPhone.
An overhauled camera?
The rumor: We thought
the iPhone 7 Plus had a killer camera, but the iPhone 8 could
change the entire game. According to
Bloomberg, Apple is testing overhauled cameras on both the
front and back of the 10th anniversary
iPhone. Unlike the 7 Plus, the iPhone 8’s dual cameras will be
stacked on top of of each other instead of side by side. That
should make for better photos. But more importantly, the
front-facing camera may also include two lenses with augmented
reality features and a Portrait mode for
Plausible? Bloomberg’s track record for
iPhone rumors is pretty solid, although Apple is clearly
testing a slew of features and not all of them will make it
into the 10th anniversary model. However, given CEO Tim Cook’s
recent comments about augmented reality and the success of the
iPhone 7 Plus and its standout camera, it seems likely that
Apple will make the iPhone 8’s photography features even
100 million OLED displays ordered from
The rumor: According to Bloomberg,
Apple has placed an order for 100 million OLED displays from
Samsung. Furthermore, Samsung is rumored to be the sole
supplier of OLED displays for the new iPhone 8, because other
manufacturers don’t have the capacity to make mass quantities.
Plausible? The rumor that Apple is moving
to OLED for the iPhone 8 is pretty solid, with recurring
reports that continue to to corroborate that information. The
only thing we’re still uncertain about is whether these OLED
displays will be flat or curved. Originally, it seemed like
Apple had come across a few roadblocks finding a supplier that
could produce enough curved OLEDs for the iPhone 8, but more
recent reports make it sound like Samsung has stepped up to the
It’s still unclear just how curved the screen will be.
According to Bloomberg, the latest iPhone 8 prototype features
a flat OLED screen with a slightly curved glass front meeting a
steel frame with an aluminum back. But Apple is still testing
iPhones with glass backs and more dramatic curves, so anything
A $1,000 iPhone?
The rumor: According to Fast
Company, this very-special 10th anniversary edition of
the iPhone could cost more than $1,000. The higher price tag is
due to the fact that this new iPhone 8 will boast an OLED
display that will cost Apple twice as much to manufacture. A
UBS analyst has added to the price speculation, stating
that the entry-level iPhone 8 will be about $850 to $900.
Plausible? The iPhone 8 will certainly be more
expensive, so you should start saving up, but will it cost over
a grand? That depends on which storage size you choose. A
top-of-the-line $1,000 iPhone is actually not so ridiculous—the
256GB version of the iPhone 7 Plus is already $969. As for an
entry-level 64GB version? Apple might want to remain
competitive, and pricing it under $900 would still preserve the
company’s notoriously high margins.
True Tone in all models?
The rumor: All new iPhone models this year
will feature Apple’s True Tone display technology, according to
an investor note from Barclays
obtained by 9to5Mac. True Tone debuted in the 9.7-inch iPad
Pro last year, and the technology uses ambient light sensors so
that the display can adopt the surrounding light and color
temperature, making it less harsh on the eyes. According to
9to5Mac, True Tone will be incorporated in the premium iPhone
8, as well as in forthcoming iPhone 7s and 7s Plus, which are
all expected to be unveiled later this year.
Plausible? Yes, Apple has a tendency to launch
new features in one device before expanding it to other
products. However, we keep hearing that Apple really wants to
make the iPhone 8 standout, so it’s interesting to learn that
True Tone is expected in all the forthcoming models.
AR is the next big thing?
The rumor: Apple is going all-in on augmented
reality, as the company ramps up developments that could be
introduced in the forthcoming iPhone camera.
Bloomberg is reporting that Apple is looking at AR as its
“next big thing.” Although AR hardware like glasses could be a
few years off, an iPhone equipped with these capabilities may
be coming sooner than we think. According to Bloomberg,
hundreds of Apple engineers are now dedicated to developing AR,
including members of the iPhone camera team.
What could AR on the iPhone look like? Bloomberg reports that
iPhone users may be able to change the depth of a photo in
post-editing or rotate the subject of the photo in 180-degrees.
Furthermore, the iPhone camera could be able to overlay visual
effects similar to Snapchat selfie filters.
Plausible? No one can deny Apple seems very
interested in becoming a major player in popularizing augmented
reality. Tim Cook has said so himself several times. However,
it is not conclusive how Apple might integrate this emerging
technology into the iPhone, or by creating new products for
It makes sense that Apple would use the iPhone as a vehicle to
introduce AR. Snapchat and Pokémon Go have given us successful
implementations of mobile AR, so something similar could be
expected. But although Bloomberg is a reliable source, we also
know that Apple is testing several iPhone models, so not all
these features are guaranteed to come to fruition. Even
Bloomberg makes it clear that Apple could decide to shelve the
technology if it’s not ready.
More expensive 3D Touch sensor?
The rumor: The 3D Touch module on the
forthcoming iPhone 8 with OLED display
will cost $15 to manufacture, at least if you believe
Digitimes, a 60 percent increase in cost. Previously, the 3D
Touch sensor on the iPhone 7 cost closer to $9 to manufacture.
This implies that Apple will have to mark up the price of the
iPhone 8 in order to keep its typically high margins. The
more-expensive 3D Touch module consists of a thin film touch
sensor that will be overlaid onto the new AMOLED display.
However, the report also mentions that TPK Holdings, the AMOLED
display supplier, won’t supply the displays until the fourth
quarter, corroborating earlier rumors that the iPhone 8 will be
launched later than September.
Plausible? Digitimes is not the most
reliable sources when it comes to new iPhones, but even if the
details are a little shaky, the implication that the iPhone 8
will be more expensive is spot-on. Besides the new 3D Touch
module, the iPhone 8’s rumored OLED display, virtual Home
button, and 3D camera all point to a higher price tag. Could it
cost over $1,000? Certainly the 256GB model might—especially
considering the fact that the iPhone 7 Plus with 256GB went on
sale for $979.
Is this what it could look like?
The rumor: We’ve all heard the rumors of an
edge-to-edge OLED display (scroll down if you need to catch
up), and now it’s easier to imagine what that would look like.
Working off a report from Nikkei Asian Review, Benjamin Geskin
created new renders for iDrop News.
Click through to see more, showing what the phone would
look like if the most popular rumors all come true. You’ll
notice the top “forehead” is shorter, the bottom “chin” is
nearly gone, the Home button’s fingerprint sensor is now
embedded into the screen, and the screen stretches to the very
Plausible? Renders can be hit or miss, but
this seems like a very plausible design, if the edge-to-edge
rumor is true. Still, the final look reminds us a little bit of
the Samsung Galaxy lineup! What we really can’t wait to find
out is if Apple uses special materials for a high-end iPhone
Edition, like it did with the Apple Watch Edition, and also
what colors the new iPhone will sport.
Could it be USB-C?
The rumor: Each new report about the
iPhone 8’s features reinforces the ones before it, but the
latest rumor from the Wall
Street Journal is one we haven’t heard before.
The WSJ says Apple will replace the iPhone
Lightning port with a USB-C connector.
This is huge. Apple just did away with the iPhone’s headphone
jack and included Lightning EarPods in the box instead of the
3.5mm earphones it has shipped with previous generations of
iPhones. Now it appears that those Lightning earphones are
already being phased out.
Plausible? Certainly. Apple has no qualms
about ditching old technology, even its own. Remember the
30-pin connector that it sacrificed for the proprietary
Lightning port? A move to USB-C would actually be a positive
one, at least in terms of compatibility. USB-C is a standard
that tech companies are quickly adopting, so the iPhone would
finally play nice with peripherals and accessories that aren’t
made or licensed by Apple. The new MacBooks are also all-in
with USB-C, so it wouldn’t be at all surprising if the iPhone
made the move.
USB-C? Not so fast
The rumor: Just a few days
after The Wall Street Journal revealed new
information about the forthcoming iPhone 8 (full rumor above),
a prominent Apple analyst is denying the intel. KGI
Securities’ Ming-Chi Kuo is refuting that the
2017 iPhone will replace the Lightning port for a USB-C
connector. In fact, Apple is allegedly adding fast-charging
capabilities to its proprietary Lightning connector for “type C
power delivery” without having to change the port and cables.
According to Kuo, Apple doesn’t have enough incentive to use
USB-C. First of all, USB-C takes up more space inside the
iPhone, which would change the form factor. In addition, since
USB-C is universal, switching to it would remove the MFi
royalties that Apple gets from licensing its property Lightning
technology to third-party iOS accessory-makers.
Plausible? Highly. Switching connectors
is not a decision Apple usually takes lightly, so the benefits
would have to drastically outweigh the current technology. And
Lightning seems to be working for the iPhone and iPad, despite
the fact that they’re incompatible with even the new MacBooks.
Plus, Kuo is a reliable source when it comes from reports from
the Apple’s assembly line.
However, we can’t totally dismiss the WSJ report. Perhaps Apple
has considered switching to USB-C. It would make its iOS
products more compatible with third-party accessories and
peripherals, a benefit now that the iPad Pro is being
advertised as a PC replacement. The switch to USB-C would
certainly be more user-friendly, but it might also counter
Apple’s closed ecosystem strategy, which doesn’t seem to be a
drawback for iPhone and iPad sales.
Curved display or no curved display?
The rumor: Early reports about the iPhone 8’s
OLED display indicated that Apple was aiming to make a curved
screen. The WSJ reports that plan is still in the
works, though Chinese
research firm TrendForce said earlier in February that
early prototypes weren’t up to Apple’s standards. Apparently
that’s no longer the case: Apple “has ordered sufficient
components to enable mass production,”
the Journal’s sources said.
Apple is getting its curved OLED displays from Samsung, who
started producing those displays for its own phones back in
2014 and is the only manufacturer who can make enough of the
curved OLED panels to supply Apple.
The iPhone 8 is also reportedly ditching the physical home
button, though it’s unclear if Apple is ready to make the move
to iris recognition for phone unlocking or if the company will
find a way to embed the Touch ID sensor in the display itself.
Plausible? A curved OLED display would be
a significant departure in design for Apple and a compelling
reason to snag the iPhone 8, which is rumored to be priced at
north of $1,000. Apple was rumored to be running into
constraints finding OLED display suppliers who can make enough
panels to build the next-gen iPhone, but
the WSJ is reliable when it comes to Apple
rumors. Expect a curved OLED screen to set the iPhone 8 apart.
The rumor: The iPhone 7 and 7 Plus got a
rear-facing camera overhaul, the 7 Plus with an extra lens for
telephoto shots. Apple is turning its attention to the
front-facing camera in the iPhone 8 with facial recognition, a
3D sensor, and infrared transmitter and receiver. The rumor
KGI analyst Ming-Chi Kuo and a research note from
investment banking firm Cowen and Company published by
Business Insider. Apple purchased the facial
recognition startup RealFace earlier in February,
making it even more likely that the company is experimenting
with alternative biometric tools, including iris recognition.
That could replace Touch ID as a phone unlocking mechanism.
The front-facing camera’s new features would have big
implications for games. Players would no longer need
avatars—instead, the new camera system would generate a
Kuo noted that Apple is planning to put a 3D sensor in the
iPhone’s rear-facing camera next year, which would negate the
need for a dual-lens system.
Plausible? This is the first time we’ve
heard about Apple incorporating new laser technology and facial
recognition, but it wouldn’t come out of nowhere. Apple
acquired Primesense and their infrared sensor technology in
2013, and the company just recently integrated facial
recognition software in Photos for iOS 10 and macOS Sierra. So
it makes sense that the next evolution of this feature is for
Apple to develop a camera with sensors that can perform facial
recognition in real-time to create augmented reality
experiences, similar to Snapchat’s selfie filters.
Stainless steel chassis?
The rumor: Apple is returning to a stainless
steel chassis for the next iPhone with two glass panes on the
front and the back, according to DigiTimes.
In addition, Apple is moving to a new forging process for the
metal bezel and frame that is expected to reduce manufacturing
cost and time. The forging process will reportedly be 30 to 50
percent cheaper than the current unibody machine-precision
process. The stainless steel frame will be provided by Foxconn
and Jabil, the manufacturers who supplied the same part on the
Plausible: Yes. This rumor corroborates
an earlier report predicting the return of the glass iPhone.
Not only that, but we’re also under the impression that Apple
is looking to launch several models of the iPhone 8 with
different prices and using different materials. And it makes
sense that the higher-end iPhone 8 would rely on stainless
steel to hold the front-and-back glass panels together, while a
cheaper version uses aluminum—that’s the same pattern we see
with the Apple Watch.
Folds like a book?
The rumor: You may be able to bend the next
iPhone, similar to how you fold to close a book. Apple has just
granted a patent for a book-like iPhone design that used an
OLED display that can fold in half.
Plausible? Just because Apple has the patent
for this, doesn’t necessarily mean that it will become a real
product. Besides, Apple is already running into issues with
OLED display supply, so there may not be enough time or
resources to incorporate a bendable, foldable display on the
3 new models?
The rumor: Apple will
launch three models of the iPhone 8 in 2017, according to a
new report from KGI Securities analysts. One model will sport a
5.5-inch OLED screen and a dual camera. One will have a
5.5-inch LCD screen, also with a dual camera. The third will be
a 4.7-inch iPhone with an LCD screen and a single camera
system, much like the current iPhone 7 model.
Plausible? KGI Securities is usually spot-on
when it comes to iPhone hardware predictions, and for a while
these supply chain analysts have been predicting that Apple
will switch to OLED displays in 2017. Apple has already been
using OLED displays on the Apple Watch and the MacBook Pro’s
Touch Bar, so using this type of display on the iPhone seems
like a logical next step. Previously, Bloomberg reported that
Apple is in talks with Sharp to be its OLED display supplier.
OLED offers a lot of benefits over LCD. Besides being more
responsive, OLED gives Apple the option to create a bezel-less
iPhone with a curved or bendable display, which would certainly
boost the iPhone 8’s wow-factor. This time around, the iPhone 8
is rumored to be “revolutionary.”
Return to all-glass?
The rumor: Apple may take a page from its own
book and release an iPhone 8 with a glass front and back,
similar to the iPhone 4 and 4s. The iPhone 8 and 8 Plus will,
of course, be larger than those models, which were 3.5 inches.
KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, who always has deep
insight into Apple’s supply chain, predicted that Apple will
make lower-priced models with aluminum casing and more
expensive versions with stainless steel. The glass would give
the phone a glossy look, like the
popular jet black iPhone 7, but be less prone to knicks and
scratches than the brushed aluminum.
Plausible? Yes. It’s all about the sourcing:
KGI’s Ming-Chi Kuo is typically spot-on when it comes to Apple
hardware changes. It’s possible that Apple is basing future
design decisions on the success of the jet black iPhone 7,
which is currently sold out through December. According to the
KGI report, 30–35 percent of preorders were for the jet black
model worldwide, and in China that percentage was higher—45–50
An OLED display at last?
The rumor: So far, Apple has held on to LCD
displays, which isn’t a bad thing—the LCD display on the iPhone
just as good as the competition’s OLED screens. But Apple
is reportedly in talks with Sharp to be one of its main
suppliers of OLED displays to use in next year’s iPhones.
Bloomberg, Apple wants to diversify its OLED sourcing so it
has multiple options. Sharp is investing $566 million in OLED
production factories which will start churning out displays by
Plausible? Yep. The future is OLED, because
the technology is more flexible than LCD and would allow Apple
to make the iPhone bezel razor-thin and move the home button to
the display itself. There are other applications made possible
by switching to OLED screens, and we’re sure Apple is exploring
those for a future phone.