Rumor: Apple's 2017 iPhone will be radical redesign with Touch ID, FaceTime camera & speaker embedd

Posted:
in iPhone edited May 2016
With this year's "iPhone 7" expected to have a similar design and form factor to the current iPhone 6s, rumors continue to point toward a major overhaul in 2017, with one well-connected insider suggesting Apple is working on an edge-to-edge display that will conceal components and sensors under the screen.


Edge-to-edge iPhone display concept by Martin Hajek.


Sharing the latest "scuttlebutt" he's heard from sources inside Apple, John Gruber of Daring Fireball said on the latest episode of his "The Talk Show" podcast that sources have independently told him that next year's iPhone upgrade will feature a display on the entire front face of the handset.

"The Touch ID sensor will be somehow embedded in the display, the front facing camera will somehow be embedded in the display, the speaker, everything," Gruber said.

His comments were made in a conversation with analyst Ben Thompson, around the two-hour mark of the latest episode. The two lamented the fact that this year's so-called "iPhone 7" is expected to look largely identical to the previous two generations, the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6.

Gruber said he doesn't believe Apple will call this year's model the "iPhone 7," though he admitted that was speculation based on his "gut" feeling, rather than what sources have told him. He also said the "rumor mill is probably right," and that this year's update will look like an iPhone 6s with the antenna lines removed from the back of the handset.

Apple is expected to have much bigger changes in the works for 2017, however. Analyst Ming-Chi Kuo of KGI Securities was first to report in March that next year Apple is apparently planning to introduce a high-end model that sports a curved glass case and a 5.8-inch AMOLED display.


Edge-to-edge iPhone display concept by Martin Hajek.


Gruber took the rumor one step further, and indicated that the entire front of the device is expected to be a display, eschewing the "chin" and "forehead" that have existed on every single iPhone model to date.

"2017 is going to be the jaw-dropping, wow, that's an astounding industrial design iPhone," Gruber said.

Still unknown is whether Apple hopes to shrink the form factor of the iPhone while keeping the same size display, or increase the screen size on the iPhone while retaining the same general form factor.

Though Apple has stuck to a "tick-tock" strategy with the iPhone for years, redesigning its handset every two years and then refining it with an "s" upgrade, all signs point to Apple introducing a new iPhone design next year. Apple's "iPhone 7" is expected to be introduced this September, and leaked parts and details show a device with a nearly identical form factor to the iPhone 6s.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 50
    Sounds like Apple just ran late with the major upgrade components, so they had to throw in a 6SS model, much as Intel now has a tick-tock-tock model. ;)
    But if they really jump from "iPhone 7" to "iPhone 8" that could annoy some iPhone 7 buyers.
  • Reply 2 of 50
    asdasdasdasd Posts: 5,686member
    A tick tick tock strategy isn't going to be viable long term.  
  • Reply 3 of 50
    jackansijackansi Posts: 116member
    Sounds good to me.  I can find other things to spend my money on :)

    I skipped the personal phone upgrade to the 6S to hang on to my 6 (work related, I've got a 6S+), I wouldn't mind hanging on to the 6 for 2 more years as long as Apple doesn't hamstring it in software to sell new hardware.  If they even just put 50% more battery life in it with no new features, I just might buy in, but they won't... so... I won't.
  • Reply 4 of 50
    tzeshantzeshan Posts: 2,351member
    Now the rumors have stretched to 2017.  The purpose is obviously to delay iPhone upgrades further down the road.  
  • Reply 5 of 50
    rogifan_newrogifan_new Posts: 4,297member
    asdasd said:
    A tick tick tock strategy isn't going to be viable long term.  
    I'm not sure what you mean. Apple releases tech when it's ready.
    jbishop1039doozydozenpscooter63
  • Reply 6 of 50
    I remember seeing the patent application for the behind the screen camera about five years ago. It will shoot "between the pixels" somehow. And finally we'll be able to actually look forward into each others' eyes during FaceTime calls.
    nolamacguycalijbishop1039doozydozenai46clemynxwaverboypaulfrost_meSpamSandwich
  • Reply 7 of 50
    dick applebaumdick applebaum Posts: 12,527member

    I suspect that Tim's "must have" feature will be services-related and best exploited by the new 2016 iPhone (whatever it's called).  

    These 2017 iPhone rumors show an attractive concept -- I hope it materializes.

    The key is for Apple to make both the 2016 and 2017 iPhones compelling enough that consumers will buy/upgrade to both.

    The Apple iPhone Upgrade Program helps make this a no-brainer decision.


    tmaylostkiwijbishop1039roundaboutnowRayz2016
  • Reply 8 of 50
    My thought, with force touch on the curved portions of the glass, all physical buttons will be removed and they will be replaced with digital counterparts in the same proximity on the outer section of glass. When your finger moves to the approximate area, a virtual button/slight shading will appear giving precise indication of where you need to press/which buttons are available such as the up/down volume. Haptic feedback will also be provided so that you can access buttons without looking at the device.
    cali
  • Reply 9 of 50
    toddzrxtoddzrx Posts: 254member
    Maybe Apple will go retro with the naming scheme and call this year's version the "6GS".
    king editor the grateasdasd
  • Reply 10 of 50
    If true, the 2017 model will be stunning. If true, time to go short is now... 
    edited May 2016
  • Reply 11 of 50
    tbehunintbehunin Posts: 56member
    This is great! I've always been stuck on the 'tock' end of the cycle. Not anymore! ;)
  • Reply 12 of 50
    mac_128mac_128 Posts: 3,454member
    toddzrx said:
    Maybe Apple will go retro with the naming scheme and call this year's version the "6GS".
    Just what I was thinking -- the SE was a setup for dropping the numbering scheme as the phone will not visibly change much.

    If this is the plan, I just hope Apple doesn't drop the headphone jack. That, or Apple is planning to take advantage of the resulting huge price drop to buy back a huge portion of its stock in anticipation of the mind-blowing iPhone "X" next year.

    Maybe the September release will focus on Apple's new audio innovations in preparation for the 2017 iPhone.
    edited May 2016
  • Reply 13 of 50
    dick applebaumdick applebaum Posts: 12,527member
    tbehunin said:
    This is great! I've always been stuck on the 'tock' end of the cycle. Not anymore!
    What if the cycle, beginning in 2016, is now tick ... tick ...  tick ...  Kinda' like a time bomb.

    edited May 2016 doozydozenfirelockslprescott
  • Reply 14 of 50
    seamlcsfseamlcsf Posts: 4member
    I'm 99% sure that this year's iPhone will be called the iPhone 6SE and iPhone 6SE+. iPhone 7 for 2017! 
  • Reply 15 of 50
    the leaked stuff saying september's iphone will look like the current version is probably leaked by Apple so that people dont hold off buying phones right now. Usually during the summer people wait to upgrade because they know a new model is coming in september. If Apple comes out with another S model (iPhone S2) it will be a total dud and Apple stock will be crushed.
    doozydozen6Sgoldfish
  • Reply 16 of 50
    wonkothesanewonkothesane Posts: 1,729member
    Time enough for cheap android knockoffs to shout out loud "first" with assumed features of the 2017 iPhone - only to find out that Apple's implementation is light years better or different. Remember this funny "force touch phone" that can "weigh" objects? :wink: 

    oh, and of course ample time as well for self proclaimed analysts to predict again doom^2 on Apple while again completely missing the point that the vast majority of buyers does not know/care about the 2017 phone and conclude that any potential "6SE" will sell in epic fail rates - which in their language means only 5 times more profit than the second most profitable company on the planet, or so. 

    Apart from that Gruber is on the better informed side of things AFAIK so looking forward to 2017 and likely enjoying my 5SE till then :)


    StimulatedBoy
  • Reply 17 of 50
    emoelleremoeller Posts: 578member
    I thought it was rather strange for Apple to allow folks who purchased the 6s under its purchase program (two year no interest payment plan) to trade up to a new phone in 2016 without additional cost.   They may have realized that the 2016 model would be a "meh" upgrade and the trade in will help push production numbers up (but without additional revenue).
  • Reply 18 of 50
    dick applebaumdick applebaum Posts: 12,527member
    emoeller said:
    I thought it was rather strange for Apple to allow folks who purchased the 6s under its purchase program (two year no interest payment plan) to trade up to a new phone in 2016 without additional cost.   They may have realized that the 2016 model would be a "meh" upgrade and the trade in will help push production numbers up (but without additional revenue).

    IMO, The iPhone Upgrade Program is designed to allow a user to save money while enjoying the latest iPhone technology.  Likely, this will allow the end of the tick-tock cycle and enable staggered release of new iPhones -- when the tech is ready, as opposed some arbitrary date on the calendar.

    I don't believe that the Upgrade Program has anything to do with the 2016 model being a "meh" upgrade.  Rather, I suspect that the 2016 model will be a compelling upgrade -- even though its physical appearance may resemble the current models.


  • Reply 19 of 50
    apple ][apple ][ Posts: 9,233member
    I don't like rumors like this.

    This isn't even a rumor about the upcoming iPhone, it's a rumor about the iPhone that's possibly coming long after the upcoming iPhone, maybe in 2017 sometime, closer to 2018.

    Screw the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7S!

    I got a much better rumor! Watch out for the iPhone 8, coming in the fall of 2018! That's gonna be bananas, and will totally crush the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7S!

    I pity any iPhone 7 buyers.


    edited May 2016
  • Reply 20 of 50
    Wu EvarWu Evar Posts: 1member
    Well don't forget releasing a brand new iPhone 7 (new design, maybe OLED etc) this year would leave Apple pretty much with a tock release in 2017 - which would be 10 years of iPhone.
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