This Is The Worst Time To Buy An iPhone

By @TheMarkDalton

Taking a step away from the usual social media and business content today, the iPhone 8 rumours are already gathering steam and with this year being the 10 year anniversary of the iPhone, well if you need to upgrade you are better off waiting!

Was the iPhone 7 range deliberately underwhelming?

Personally I believe that the answer to this is yes. At the start of last year the rumour mill around the iPhone 7 was in full swing and there were all kinds of new features being touted. Wireless charging, OLED screen, curved display, new design, edge to edge display, no home button ect.

As the year rolled on and the release started getting closer, mumblings started coming out that a lot of the technology ‘wasn’t ready’ for this year and it would be the following year before a big revamp came. That was pretty much what happened, we got iPhones that looked nice and had better cameras and faster processors. The ground breaking tech wasn’t there.

So, with us being in March already, the new iPhone launch is expected to be in September and with the rumours going around you would be crazy to upgrade now unless your iPhone is falling apart!

This is the 10 year anniversary and we are talking about Apple, so you know something big is coming. Wait for the new one, here is what we know so far.

The name

Following Apple’s traditional naming system we would usually expect this year to be the year of the “s” devices and we would be expecting the iPhone 7s. However with the changes we are expecting to see, it is hard to believe that Apple will go this route in 2017. They could skip ahead to the next whole number which would be the iPhone 8 or there has also been speculation that they could change the naming system completely and call it the iPhone X.

Apple is also rumoured to be planning to produce three new models in 2017, two which will be similar to the existing line and then a flagship OLED model.

Design

Apple is rumoured to be moving away from aluminium and back to glass which they last used in the iPhone 4s and it was a disaster at the time. I can well remember dropping mine and feeling helpless as it smashed to pieces. There has been great advancements in glass since then and fingers crossed it won’t be as fragile as before.

Rumours are suggesting three phone sizes, a 4.7 inch screen, 5 inch screen and a 5.5 inch screen. The OLED model is speculated to have the glass body but there is debate if the other two phones will be made of the same material.

Water resistance

There is expected to be an improvement in water resistance in this years phone and it may feature an IP68 rating which would be an improvement on the current IP67 rating and would be the same as the Galaxy S7.

Display

At least one model is expected to include an OLED display and Apple has already signed a deal with Samsung to produce OLED displays for devices set to debut in 2017.

Samsung will provide approx 160 million OLED panels which are rumoured to be for the 5 inch iPhone. This will be around 80% of the panels while there are other companies also working on OLED displays that will ship in 2018. So if you pick one up later this year you will have the Samsung OLED display (not that it will make a difference).

OLED offers better contrast, colour, efficiency and helps with battery life. The problem with OLED is that they don’t have the lifespan of an LCD display. Now if you upgrade every year like I do then that won’t be an issue, however if you upgrade every few years and like to hold onto devices for a while then it could end up being a problem.

Apple currently uses OLED displays in the new Apple Watch. There are also rumours that there will be an iPhone 8 rocking an OLED display which is 5.8 inches in size.

USB-C

This one really broke out last week and people lost their minds over it and I can’t understand why. This should be no shock that Apple will want to switch the iPhone to USB-C. They have just made it the only port available on the new MacBook Pro and so it was inevitable that the iPhone would more than likely be the next Apple device to suffer this treatment.

It will be the second major port change to the iPhone in the last five years and won’t go over well with customers who have peripherals but it would be the necessary step forward to having a universal connection between Apple devices.

Performance

Every new version of the iPhone comes with a fast new shiny processor and over the years they have gotten to be pretty advanced. This year we are expecting the A11 chip which should be smaller, faster and pack more power.

Wireless charging

Something I have wanted for years and was hoping it would come to last years iPhone. The rumours about Apple working on wireless charging have been around for a while now. Apple joined the Wireless Power Consortium in Feb which is committed to the open development of Qi wireless charging standard which is widely used in the Samsung Galaxy line.

Apple has filed patents for inductive charging and there are a lot of unknowns around the topic with some speculating that it would be built into the phone while others think wireless charging could involve buying a separate accessory from Apple.

Function area

A recent report speculates that Apple could ditch the home button completely for a function area. This would display a variety of controls based on where you are on the iPhone at any given time. A move like this of course would mean that Touch ID would be no more and Apple would have to build a fingerprint reader into the display.

Taptic engine

If Apple is to indeed eliminate the home button then they would have to enhance the taptic engine. Apple is said to be working on a “high-performance motor” which is able to “create more complex tactile vibrations.”

Cameras

Apple has invested a lot in camera technology over the years and the latest cameras on the iPhone 7 Plus offer bokeh effects. The next cameras could offer optical image stabilisation and support 3D photography effects.

Siri

Apple is also said to be working on Siri enhancements. While it is unclear what a new version of Siri may be able to do, in my view the only way is up. I’m not a fan of Siri and I am still waiting for a time when Apple’s AI will actually become useful for me.

Release and price

As always we expect to see the new iPhone around September and the news going around is that it will cost more if you want the high end premium OLED model. With all the rumoured advancements, it means that it costs more money to make and if you are going for the OLED iPhone and you are not on bill pay then you can expect it to possibly run you over $1,000.

Oh and by the way, this is not an Apple thing either. Android device makers are also expected to be willing to pay more money for similar parts to Apple and they are also speculated at charging similar prices to Apple. What we can say going on the rumours is that if you want an OLED iPhone you will pay over $1,000 but if you don’t want to spend that much we can expect the LCD models of this years iPhone to probably hit the current price point.

Some people have asked if I will be spending $1,000 on an iPhone…No. But I don’t need to because I do the same thing every year I upgrade, my plan means I am heavily subsidised and I trade in my current device which is only a year old and gets good money on the trade in. Trading in the iPhone 6 Plus when going to the iPhone 6s Plus knocked €400 off the price at the time.

However, if you are looking at upgrading your iPhone now, you may be better off waiting until September.

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