Editors' note: This article was originally published on July 29, and we'll continue to add new rumors and stories as they emerge.
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Apple has apparently jammed so much new technology into the new iPhones that it's skipping a generation altogether. According to, this year there will be no incremental "S" series update -- no iPhone 7S, no iPhone 7S Plus. Instead, the company will deliver the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus in addition to its radically redesigned flagship, .
And in the near term, it sounds like the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus will be in much greater supply than the 10th anniversary edition. Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo reports (via MacRumors) that the company is producing less than 10,000 units per day of the flagship model, which will likely result in severe shortages for weeks or even months, and perhaps a complete postponement of its retail release.
We expect to hear more details about timing and availability tomorrow, at the 10 a.m. PTat Apple's new Cupertino headquarters. In the meantime, we continue to comb through all of the new details that emerged over the weekend in the wake of .
As reported by 9to5Mac and others, what seems to have been on Friday has provided an advance look at the next version of the operating system as well as revelations about the new phones, the and . Read on to get a handle on all of the rumors.
iPhone 8 and 8 Plus specs we might see:
- Overall, an incremental update of the current generation
- Slightly heavier, thicker and longer than the current generation
- LCD display with TrueTone
- Apple's next-generation processor (the A10X or A11)
- Physical home button with support for Touch ID
- iOS 11 ( )
- Inductive wireless charging
- Aluminum and/or glass case
- Enhanced waterproofing
- Black, silver and gold options
- 2GB of RAM
- Priced around $649 for the iPhone 8 (£599 and AU$1,079) and $769 for the iPhone 8 Plus (£719 and AU$1,269)
How are the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus different from the iPhone X?
According to the rumors, the differences between the flagship and the secondary models may be more stark than in previous years. The big divergences include:
- Display: The iPhone X is said to have a new edge-to-edge OLED display, while the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus will likely stick with the current LCD technology.
- Touch ID: The 8 and 8 Plus models will have the familiar Touch ID-fingerprint scanner-home button system, while the new flagship will step up to , Apple Pay and more.
- Cameras: To enable this new "Face ID" system, the iPhone X will come with a front-facing camera, infrared transmitter and infrared receiver array that will also support a whole bunch of new AR features coming in
- User interface: Lacking a physical home button, the iPhone X is expected to step up to a gesture-based user interface. The iPhone 8 and 8 Plus will likely stick with the current UI.
The new OLED display and case design will certainly drive the two different iPhone tiers apart aesthetically; the iPhone X will look pretty different from the LCD models this year. It's possible that only the flagship may have a few other premium features like inductive and/or fast USB-C charging. In addition, the iPhone X will probably have more RAM, a higher max memory size, and, of course,.
What's in a name?
We assumed Steve Troughton-Smith, Apple will skip the "S" series this year and go straight to the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus, given the scope of the upgrade. According to Troughton-Smith, the code indicates that the top-end iPhone will be called "iPhone X," while the step-down models will be called iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus.. But according to iOS developer
Announcement and release dates
After months of rumors about manufacturing issues, Apple made the official invite to media to an event at its new Cupertino headquarters. The Wall Street Journal corroborated an earlier report by tech blog Mac4Ever, citing French telecom sources, pegging for the introduction and Sept. 22 for the release. Despite months of reports about and even panic, we now presume that Apple will deliver a plentiful supply of the two LCD models soon after the announcement.
TechCrunch reports that Apple will likely take preorders starting Friday, Sept. 15 and release some phones on Friday, Sept. 22. Analyst Ming-Chi Kuo predicts that the iPhone X will be difficult to come by due to relatively low production numbers. This corroborates last week's Wall Street Journal report suggesting that that the OLED model may be difficult to come by, at least initially, with its release potentially delayed by a month or more.
They may be a bit bigger
Most reports suggest that phone sizes will remain the same, setting the stage for a 4.7-inch iPhone 8 and 5.5-inch iPhone 8 Plus. German site giga.de reports that this year's LCD models may be via Slashleaks) has leaked what it says are the final dimensions: 5.45 by 2.64 by 0.28 inches for the iPhone 8 and 6.24 by 3.07 by 0.29 inches for the 8 Plus.than the previous generation, though with slightly less of a bulge around the camera lenses. And TechnoBuffalo (
They may be made of glass and steel
There's no clear consensus on what material Apple will use for the "S" phones. Some expect them to have an aluminum alloy chassis (DigiTimes); others say the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus will be all glass and steel -- just like the iPhone X.
One or both may have dual cameras
It's nearly certain the forthcoming 8 Plus will have two cameras on the back, consistent with the current generation 7 Plus, though it's conceivable that the entry-level iPhone 8 could also get two rear-facing lenses in order to make more use of thefeatured in the next generation of Apple's mobile operating systems (more on that below).
They might support inductive wireless charging
Most of the "wireless charging" rumors -- technically, it's called inductive charging -- have revolved around the iPhone X. But the CEO of Wistron, a Taiwanese iPhone assembler, reportedly revealed that that an upcoming 5.5-inch iPhone model -- assumed to be the 8 Plus -- would be. That noted, the iPhone X is said to be very similar in size to the iPhone 8 Plus, so this is one of the murkier rumors around. Nevertheless, according to Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, the next generation of iPhones will support faster USB-C-powered "plugged-in" charges, as well as an .
They will probably have Touch ID
Much of the speculation about the iPhone X, and one of the major factors faulted for delaying production, involves aand its integration with Touch ID. The iPhone 8 and 8 Plus, however, are expected to stick with the current generation's conventional setup: a fingerprint sensor embedded in a physical home button.
They may step up to Apple's next-generation processor
We do hear that the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus will get a performance upgrade; all three 2017 models are said to use Apple's next-generation A11 chip.
What about the iPhone SE?
Most of the iPhone buzz has centered around the 10th-anniversary model, and, to a lesser extent, the 8 and 8 Plus. There's been hardly any discussion of the future of the littlest member of Apple's lineup: the iPhone SE. Of course this, in and of itself, may be a signal of some kind: Ming-Chi Kuo has speculated that Apple will not deliver a new iPhone SE in 2017. And Pan Jiutang, another analyst, says that given low demand for the smaller form factor, Apple may abandon the product altogether (via Cult of Mac).
The 4-inch iPhone SE debuted in March 2016, a few months after the introduction of the, upon which it is closely based. Last May, Apple increased the SE's storage capacity but left the price unchanged -- $399, £379 and AU$679 for the 32GB model and $499, £479 and AU$679 for the 128GB edition.
How big a deal is iOS 11?
Potentially pretty big, given what we know so far. Apple delivered a preview of WWDC and released the public beta in June (here's how to install it). Augmented reality that layers images or animations over real-life things will be a big part of iOS 11, and both the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus could feature dual lens rear cameras in order to .at this year's
They might be more expensive
Given the dearth of blockbuster features, we don't expect Apple to tinker with the LCD models' pricing too much. That noted, the current 7 Plus model costs $769, £719 and AU$1,269 -- up from $749 for Plus models in previous years.
We still expect pricing to stay more or less consistent, with the iPhone 8 starting around $649 (£599 and AU$1,079) and $769 for the iPhone 8 Plus (£719 and AU$1,269). The iPhone X, on the other hand, is rumored to be the most expensive iPhone yet, starting at $1,000, according to the New York Times (roughly £770 and AU$1,260), and going as high as $1,200 (roughly £930 and AU$1,510) for higher storage capacity editions.