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App gluttons, rejoice: ​Analyst says iPhone 7 doubles storage to 256GB

TrendForce also expects the larger 5.5-inch model to sport a dual-camera module and boost memory to 3GB.

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Stephen Shankland principal writer
Stephen Shankland has been a reporter at CNET since 1998 and writes about processors, digital photography, AI, quantum computing, computer science, materials science, supercomputers, drones, browsers, 3D printing, USB, and new computing technology in general. He has a soft spot in his heart for standards groups and I/O interfaces. His first big scoop was about radioactive cat poop.
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  • I've been covering the technology industry for 24 years and was a science writer for five years before that. I've got deep expertise in microprocessors, digital photography, computer hardware and software, internet standards, web technology, and other dee
Stephen Shankland
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Watch this: iPhone 7 may not feature drastic changes
The iPhone 6S and 6S Plus successors could double sotrage to 256GB​.
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The iPhone 6S and 6S Plus successors could double sotrage to 256GB​.

The iPhone 6S and 6S Plus' successors could double storage to 256GB.

Sarah Tew/CNET

Apple's upcoming iPhone 7 will be available with a whopping 256GB of storage space, matching the iPad Pro and offering lots more room for apps and videos, an analyst firm predicted Wednesday.

Today's iPhone 6S and 6S Plus models top out at 128GB of storage. But cheaper component costs will allow Apple to tuck in 256GB, TrendForce said. The firm expects Apple to continue to offer 4.7-inch and 5.5-inch models.

Another change will be a memory boost to 3GB in the 5.5-inch model, TrendForce said. That increase -- up from 2GB with the iPhone 6S and 6S Plus and 1GB in the 6 and 6 Plus -- should make it easier to run multiple apps at the same time, to handle more operating system features and to accommodate more sophisticated apps. The king of the hill here will still be the 12.9-inch iPad Pro, which already today has 4GB of memory.

Apple has a lot riding on the iPhone 7. For the first time ever, iPhone shipments shrank in the first quarter of 2016 to 51.2 million units. That's still a formidable and highly profitable figure, but Apple still faces fierce competition from phones powered by Google's Android software. Apple didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.

TrendForce also predicted no big change to the iPhone 7's screen technology, a choice that would disappoint fans hoping for rich colors offered by AMOLED display technology. It also predicted a dual-camera module for the 5.5-inch model.

Based on other unconfirmed reports, other possible future features of the iPhone 7 include the abandonment of the 3.5-inch headphone jack, a doubling of minimum storage to 32GB, and a shift to a slower-paced three-year update cycle instead of today's two-year cadence with a new exterior and then an S-series internal upgrade.