Apple’s upcoming iPhone 7 may very well represent the most fundamental iPhone redesign we’ve seen yet. Not only will the iPhone 7 likely sport a new form factor, there are also a number of rumors pointing towards the device completely doing away with the traditional 3.5mm headphone jack.
Of course, seeing as how the next iPhone will be a number upgrade in the refresh cycle (as opposed to an ‘S’ upgrade), it stands to reason that the iPhone 7 will introduce a wide array of compelling new features.
And we’ve compiled a list of all the interesting iPhone 7 rumors we’ve seen spring to life over the past few months. While Apple’s iPhone plans are certainly subject to change, the list below is a reasonable and safe approximation of what exciting features folks looking to upgrade can look forward to later this year.
1. No headphone jack
Without question, the most startling design change to the iPhone 7 may be its lack of a headphone jack. What started out as a crazy rumor has since been corroborated by a number of varying sources. According to reports, Apple will completely remove the traditional 3.5mm headphone jack and instead rely on the Lightning port for audio. Doing so will not only save space, thus allowing for a thinner iPhone, but will also improve the overall sound quality. A Fast Company report from last week claimed that the iPhone 7’s “audio system will also leverage a new noise-canceling technology” that will be “baked into the phone and also into the headphones that will plug into it, and will help remove background noise in music playback and in phone calls…”
The only question, though, is how big the backlash will be if Apple actually does abandon the traditional 3.5mm headphone jack? Will consumers protest and take their wallets elsewhere, or will this eventually blow over with time, much like other instances where Apple has abandoned legacy technologies.
2. Waterproof design
One of the side benefits to eliminating the headphone jack is that it makes it easier to waterproof the iPhone. After all, it’s one less port for water to creep into and wreak havoc with the circuitry. Over the past few weeks, we’ve seen reports that the iPhone 7 will be completely dust and waterproof and may very well come with an IP68 rating. If this pans out, the iPhone 7 would be able to withstand submersion under water at great depths and still operate swimmingly after the fact.
3. New form factor
While the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus display sizes will be the same as what Apple already uses on the iPhone 6s and 6s Plus, it stands to reason that the iPhone 7 will introduce a new look and feel to Apple’s smartphone lineup. Indeed, every major iPhone upgrade (the iPhone 4, iPhone 5, iPhone 6) has incorporated new design elements and there’s no reason to think that the iPhone 7 will be any different. One safe bet is that the iPhone 7 will be even thinner than the iPhone 6s and 6s Plus.
4. Wireless Charging
Though smartphones from companies like Samsung have had wireless charging for some time, Apple will reportedly jump on the bandwagon with the iPhone 7. Apple, we should point out, isn’t completely new to the world of wireless charging as that’s how the Apple Watch is charged.
5. Bigger battery
Battery life has long been a sore spot for some iPhone users. Of course, this is arguably a good problem as it shows that consumers love using their iPhones. With respect to Apple’s next-gen iPhone 7, a recently surfaced report claims that the battery packs on the iPhone 7 models may have more capacity than the ones used on the iPhone 6s and 6s Plus. Specifically, the iPhone 7 Plus model may be graced with a 3100 man battery. In contrast, the iPhone 6s Plus battery is 2750 mAh. If this translates into longer battery life, that may be a strong impetus for folks to upgrade.
6. Better photos with dual-cameras
We haven’t heard too much about the iPhone 7 camera just yet, but a recently unearthed patent suggests that Apple is actively exploring implementing two distinct camera modules on the iPhone. Doing so would not only help improve overall camera quality, but would also improve image quality and overall detailing when zooming in. Another compelling use-case involves the ability to record two types of video at the same time, one in regular 4K and one in slow motion.
We should also point out that Apple back in April acquired LinX Computational Imaging, an Israeli company with incredibly advanced camera technology. As we highlighted a few months back, LinX touted its cameras as “leading the way to DSLR performance in slim handsets.” Some of the other features LinX’s camera technology provided includes improved low light photography, decreased noise levels and much more.
7. More RAM
Unfortunately, this rumor only pertains to the iPhone 7 Plus. According to reputable KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, Apple will bestow the iPhone 7 Plus with 3GB of RAM, a slight bump up from the 2GB of RAM currently found in the company’s iPhone 6s lineup. While this rumor has a 50-50 shot of being true, it’s widely believed that the iPhone 7 model will ship with 2GB of RAM.
8. 256GB of Storage
With iPhones today capable of taking 4K video and high-quality photos, iPhone users, more than ever, are in need of more varied storage options.
To that end, rumor has it that the iPhone 7 Plus alone (do you notice a pattern here?) may be graced with a 256GB model. As it stands now, the largest capacity iPhone checks in at 128GB.
9. Blazing Fast and power efficient A10 processor
With each successive iPhone release, Apple manages to greatly improve both the performance and power efficiency of its processors. That being the case, it’s reasonable to assume that the iPhone 7 will house a blazing fast A10 processor.
Some rumors we’ve seen thus far have suggested that the A10 will deliver a performance boost of 20% while simultaneously reducing power consumption by 40%, relative to the iPhone 6s. Coupled with larger capacity battery packs (see above), we can only hope that the iPhone 7 models will really deliver a notable uptick in battery performance.
10. Earlier release date
Since the iPhone 4s hit store shelves in 2011, every new iPhone has launched sometime during the Fall. In 2016, Apple may decide to switch things up. According to an AppleInsider report from this past November, Apple may release its next-gen iPhone model sometime during the Summer.
This seems very unlikely, of course, for a number of reasons. Apple is under tremendous pressure this year to grow holiday-quarter sales. We also would have certainly seen more components leak at this point if iPhone 7 production was going to ramp up in time for a summer launch.
Rumored features not likely to happen
No home button. While perhaps a design choice Apple will implement in the future, we haven’t seen any genuine indication that 2016 will be the year the home button disappears
No OLED display. The rumors surrounding Apple’s interest in OLED displays have become too loud to ignore. Still, it’s far too early in the game to expect the iPhone 7 to feature said display. From what we’ve heard thus far, an iPhone equipped with an OLED display won’t become a reality until the iPhone 8 ships in 2018.