The iPhone 6 is coming; we're not sure exactly when or what it's going to look like, but it's definitely on its way. Apple addicts are awaiting the arrival of the next iPhone like kids on Christmas morning and the ambiguity surrounding the highly anticipated smartphone fuels a rumor mill strong enough to blow away a tsunami.
What will it look like
Apple is sticking to its usual M.O. by staying mum on the details, but a slew of leaked photos, factory orders, designer mock-ups, and analyst speculations paint a prospective picture.
Last year, Apple released two new iPhones, and it's expected to do the same in 2014. In addition to its standard 4.7-inch model, rumors suggest that Apple is hopping on the larger screen bandwagon and offering a speculated 5.5-inch model. If true, the phablet (a combination phone and tablet) will be Apple's biggest iPhone release to-date.
Consistent buzz about superslim bezels with the chance of curved screens are also top design changes speculated to grace the new iPhones. A safe bet is the reappearance of TouchID, a fingerprint sensor, at least one model with a sapphire screen -- a hard, scratch-resistant material currently used on the iPhone 5S' home button -- and the freshly announced iOS 8.
The release of iOS 8 at WWDC 2014 subtly hinted at a few things we can expect from the upcoming generation of iPhones, though reading between the lines is necessary. Thankfully, CNET's Scott Stein did all the hard work and outlines the clues in his post about what iOS 8 tells us about the next iPhones and iPad.
When will it be available
Nothing is being confirmed -- or denied. However Apple's history suggests a September announcement, with a release date to follow shortly after -- in time for the biggest gift-giving holidays. Needless to say, expectations are high, and with so many cooks in the smartphone-kitchen, the competition against the yet-to-be-released iPhone 6 is already heating up.
Indeed, the iPhone 6 will have to compete with the Samsung Galaxy S5, which features a waterproof build and heart-rate sensor, and the HTC One M8, an equally stylish handset with an aluminum back and excellent speakers. The iPhone has yet to provide a few standard features, like widgets and NFC capabilities, so in some ways the tables have turned and it's Apple's turn to catch up to Android smartphones.
Editors' note: This post was originally published on January 23, 2014. We will continue to update it when new rumors surface.
July 31, 2014
We speculated a fall release for the iPhone 6 and now a rumor claiming an October unveiling is the first with an actual date attached to it.
July 29, 2014
The will-they-won't-they rumors to Apple's moves concerning its next smartphone take a new spin with analysts raining doubt on the speculation of the iPhone 6 sporting a sapphire screen.
July 28, 2014
Apple might finally catch up to Android smartphones by offering NFC in the next generation of iPhone models.
July 22, 2014
Expecting the inevitable sale of the iPhone 6, Chinese retailers are already taking pre-orders even though the smartphone has yet to be confirmed, let alone announced. Talk about staying ahead in the count.
July 22, 2014
Summer is halfway through, and rumors about a fall release date for the Apple iPhone 6 are starting to gain traction. An analyst predicts the anticipated smartphone will be released in September.
July 21, 2014
The Wall Street Journal is reporting that the production of the two speculated iPhones is getting a big green light. Orders to suppliers are higher than those of the 5S and 5C, which were released last year.
July 17, 2014
Many have ditched portable cameras in favor of taking photos with their smartphones, so it's no surprise that upgrades to the camera on the next iPhone are beginning to circulate.
July 17, 2014
Photos leaked by a French tech website suggest that the next iPhone will pack a battery with more capacity, but not necessarily longer battery life.
July 16, 2014
There hasn't been this many rumors about a battery since they were originally invented. Rumors of the upcoming iPhone 6's battery shrinking down to 2-millimeters support speculation that it will be the thinnest model yet.
July 15, 2014
Alleged production delays of the phablet sized iPhone 6 are rumored to be smoothed out, thanks to Apple finding a new partner for manufacturing a battery thin and light enough to be worthy of the upcoming smartphone.
July 13, 2014
Will the super-sized iPhone ever see the light of day? Rumors point to yes, but not this year. Production problems are being cited as the cause of the delay.
July 10, 2014
The iPhone 6 rumor mill has grown a little stale, but a new report suggesting that Apple is adding haptic technology to the upcoming smartphone is heating up the conversation.
July 7, 2014
A noted Apple rumor-leaker and a few others shared video of the iPhone 6's purported sapphire display. One even went as far as testing the limits of the display's durability.
July 7, 2014
After receiving criticism on its poor battery life, reports of a 15 percent battery boost for the upcoming 4.7-inch iPhone 6 are swirling around. That's a healthy upgrade compared to the 8 percent increase between the iPhone 5 and 5S.
July 6, 2014
Apple faithful are taking issues with a forecast on the iPhone 6's design that is unfavored. There are no confirmed rumors on the existence of the next Apple smartphone, let alone its design, however mock-ups and reports are painting a vague picture of what to anticipate.
July 3, 2014
Photos and video allegedly comparing the upcoming iPhone 6 to the iPhone 5S have surfaced. The larger 5.5-inch model didn't make an appearance, but the size increase between the 4-inch 5S screen and the purported iPhone 6 is apparent.
June 17, 2014
Orders for components are coming in fast for manufacturers of the next iPhone. Other Apple devices are also part of the large orders, but the boom in request suggests the iPhone 6 is coming soon.
June 11, 2014
Another duo of iPhone-like devices have surfaced thanks to a previous leaker of Apple products. An ex-pop star from Taiwan who leaked photos of the iPhone 5 shared a few snaps of what he claims are the upcoming pair of iPhone 6 smartphones.
June 2, 2014
The company made no mention of a new iPhone, but Apple did show off its latest version of its mobile operating system, iOS 8.
May 28, 2014
Apple hoarding sapphire sounds like the plot for dull video game, but a researcher says it's likely due to the much speculated larger iPhone.
May 27, 2014
Every non-iPod iOS device (yes, they still make those) coming out later this year, including the new iPhone(s), are rumored to pack Touch ID. The iPhone 5S is currently the only device that offers the fingerprint sensor.
May 12, 2014
Purported renderings of the iPhone 6, allegedly from Apple supplier Foxconn, have surfaced. One of the images shows a 5.5-inch model in the pipeline.
May 10, 2014
Is the Apple phablet an inevitable device? As inevitable as questions-as-headlines? The 5.5-inch iPhone rumor gets a small boost from some supply chain sources.
May 9, 2014
We're used to iPhone unveiling in the fall, before prime gift-giving season, however, the latest rumor posits an earlier release. New reports claim the phone will be revealed in August, instead of the previously expected September.
May 8, 2014
A pair of photos tweeted by Sonny Dickson, a known leaker of Apple devices, allegedly show the iPhone 6. Claiming the front and rear sides are both mock-ups, the images reveal a curvy new design.
April 30, 2014
Apple is shipping sapphire from Arizona to China, in what is speculated as a move toward a new high-end iPhone.
April 29, 2014
Apple's iPhone camera may get even better with the inclusion of image stabilization. The new feature would help reduce blurriness caused by shaky hands or low-lighting.
April 24, 2014
Curved displays are all the rage for televisions, but will the next iPhone embrace the wave? One report says yes.
More cases for the purported iPhone 6 suggest a Nexus 5 approach to its new look.
April 16, 2014
Early productions of cases intended for the Apple iPhone 6 show that the rumored larger screen is definitely in the cards, and the power button will have a new home.
April 15, 2014
The Web is abuzz with talk of a larger Apple iPhone, and a new mysterious image has popped up online to fuel the fire. The speculated iPhone 6's larger screen is held up to an iPhone 5 for comparison and it looks like, well, a bigger iPhone screen.
April 9, 2014
More rumors about a staggered launch for the 4.7-inch and 5.5-inch iPhones have surfaced. The smaller one is expected in July, with the largest iPhone to date expected in September.
March 31, 2014
According to Reuters, the 4.7inch iPhone will launch before the 5.5-inch model.
March 28, 2014
A major supplier of iPhone displays just announced a new 5.5-inch WQHD screen, with shipping availability starting in April.
March 27, 2014
According to a Japanese publication, the iPhone 6 will land in September in two different sizes.
March 27, 2014
Orders that could imply mass production of batteries for the iPhone 6, suggest that the new smartphone will be available later rather than sooner.
March 18, 2014
One of Apple's manufacturing partners is opening a new factory space and recruiting workers, which is stirring up production date rumors for the upcoming iPhone 6. If true, production in the second quarter is expected.
March 17, 2014
The iPhone 6 could come equipped with its own barometer for monitoring weather conditions. Samsung added this features to the Galaxy S4 a year ago, and this could be an attempt from Apple to play catch-up.
February 12, 2014
Alleged photos of the unconfirmed Apple iPhone 6 are cropping up with more frequency. Whether these photos are the real deal or not is still up for debate. But if they are, they unveil a larger iPhone screen and a thin profile to match its thin bezels.
February 12, 2014
One hopeful source claims that Apple will release two new iPhones later this year with bigger screen sizes than before. One model is expected to boast a 4.7-inch screen and the other a 5.5-inch display. The rumor posits that these new iPhone 6 models will drop in September. We'll see about that.
February 11, 2014
The next generation of Apple iPhones is now linked to a recurring rumor about the smartphone's design: no bezels. The choice would allow for more screen space -- something many Apple loyalists have patiently waited for -- and is assumed to require the fingerprint scanner that debuted on the iPhone 5S.
February 11, 2014
A Japanese source claims that Sony is going to start making a few additional components for Apple's next iPhone camera. Sony already makes CMOS sensors for the rear cameras on iPhones. However, this report claims that the order will double soon, due to speculation that Apple will begin to use a Sony CMOS sensor on the front camera as well.
January 23, 2014
According to the Wall Street Journal, Apple will give us two new iPhones this year, just as it did when the company announced the iPhone 5S and 5C in 2013. This time around, the two phones will have different sizes, one around 4.7 inches, and another that's supposedly larger than 5 inches. Apple is also said to be doing away with the 5C's polycarbonate case in favor of using metal for both new devices.
January 22, 2014
Though there's been a lot of buzz about the iPhone 6's size, Cowen and Company analyst Timothy Arcuri is claiming that the next iPhone will have a 4.8-inch screen and that the design is already "locked down." He also notes that the new iPhone will have higher-speed 802.11ac Wi-Fi connectivity.
January 20, 2014
Following earlier reports, Chinese analyst Sun Changxu told Chinese-language Web site QQ Tech that the iPhone 6 will come in two sizes. First, at Apple's Worldwide Developer's Conference in June 2014, the company will release a 4.7-inch iPhone with a 1,136x640 pixel display, which is only slightly larger than the screen on the iPhone 5S. Shortly after that first release, Changxu says that Apple will unveil a larger, higher-resolution 5.7-inch iPhone.
January 14, 2014
Forecasts from market research firm DisplaySearch predict that Apple will release two new iPhone models in 2014, both with higher-resolution screens that would trump the current iPhone's 4-inch 1,136x640-pixel display. The "high-end" model of the new iPhone would have a 5.5-inch screen with a 1,920x1,080 low-temperature polysilicon (LTPS) LCD display, which is the same kind of screen used in the 5S. The other iPhone model could have a 4.7-inch screen with a 1,600x900 resolution display.