We already knew the next iPhone would be radical and exciting, but new leaks suggest even our sky high expectations are not actually high enough…
That’s the promise from Robert Scoble. In a new Facebook post the famed tech icon has unleashed a torrent of information about Apple AAPL -2.27%’s 2017 iPhone that makes science fiction sound dull.
Here are Scoble’s main takeaways about a device expected to be called the ‘iPhone 8’ (Apple will skip an S generation for the device’s 10th anniversary).
The next iPhone will be, I am told, a clear piece of glass (er, Gorilla Glass sandwich with other polycarbonates for being pretty shatter resistant if dropped) with a next-generation OLED screen (I have several sources confirming this.
You pop it into a headset which has eye sensors on it, which enables the next iPhone to have a higher apparent frame rate and polygon count than a PC with a Nvidia 1080 card in it.
The phone itself has a next-generation 3D sensor from Primesense, which Apple bought. Apple has 600 engineers working in Israel on just the sensor. It’s the 10th anniversary of the iPhone. It’s the first product introduction in Apple’s new amazing headquarters. It’s a big f**king deal and will change this industry deeply.
Also, updates from new sources: expect battery and antennas to be hidden around the edges of the screen, which explains how Apple will fit in some of the pieces even while most of the chips that make up a phone are in a pack/strip at the bottom of the phone.
I’d forgive you if your first reaction was: ‘Scoble has gone crazy!’
Certainly I think there’s a lot to swallow here, and while previous leaks have suggested an “all glass design” and “edgeless display” they haven’t gone so far as to suggest Apple will be producing what amounts to a completely transparent handset.
I’m also not convinced that the battery tech required for such a fantastical handset could be ‘hidden’ (batteries currently take up about 60% of a smartphone’s interior) or the performance be desktop class. Scoble rightly has great respect and a strong track record in the industry, but to me this is simply too good to be true.
What I do believe is elements of Scoble’s description will find their way into the new phone, but in far more moderate ways.
I’d expect the Touch ID sensor to be built into the display and the current thick top and bottom bezels of the iPhone 7 to be greatly reduced. I’d expect a return to a glass back (potentially for the long awaited introduction of wireless charging) and fast wired charging as standard (no iPad charger required). iOS 11 should also see significant cosmetic changes given Apple hasn’t had a significant visual overhaul in several years.
That said I would also love nothing more than for Scoble to prove me completely wrong.
In recent years smartphone designs have become increasingly similar (just look at the ridiculously generic appearance of Google’s otherwise stunning Pixel and Pixel XL) and a radical shake could rejuvenate a sector which is beginning to stagnate.