Apple will be launching new iPhones this fall, likely to be marketed as ‘iPhone 7’ and ‘iPhone 7 Plus’.
Should the company stick to its established S-upgrade cycle, and there’s no reason to believe it won’t, then we should see an ‘iPhone 7s’ and ‘iPhone 7s Plus’ in 2017, right? That’s what conventional wisdom has taught us, but one analyst’s turned that conventional wisdom on its head.
Citing industry sources, Barclays analyst Mark Moskowitz recently wrote a lot of nice things about Apple’s 2017 iPhone, which he called a “mega cycle” upgrade that will feature a bunch of significant hardware advances that should help increase Apple’s iPhone sales by as much as 10.3 percent.
An iPhone model that it has in store for 2017 will be so significant that Apple will skip its traditional S-upgrade cycle next year altogether and market the device as an ‘iPhone 8’.
“Silver lining—there might be no ‘S’ cycle in calendar year 2017,” wrote the analyst. “Our conversations with industry participants suggest Apple could skip the ‘S’ cycle next year and instead jump to iPhone 8.”
It will be a completely overhauled phone with some “major design changes” and some long awaited features such as wireless charging, a display based on the superior OLED technology and the front plate without the iconic Home button.
An iPhone without a Home button? Yes, because the screen will have Touch ID incorporated into it, according to Moskowitz. And according to this author, 3D Touch could very well be the Home button killer.
He also added the following (as always, emphasis and edits mine):
“The jump could showcase major form factor changes, including OLED, no Home button and wireless charging. In our view, these potential changes could drive a mega cycle, underpinning our calendar 2017 iPhone unit growth estimate of 10.3 percent, vs. 6.3 percent previously.”
Several rumors have suggested that Apple and its suppliers are pouring billions of dollars into facilities that should churn out OLED panels in volume for iPhones starting in 2017 or 2018. Moreover, all checks indicate that Apple is also moving to integrate its touchscreen and display drivers into a one-chip solution developed in-house.
Photo: Apple’s current iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus models.