The iPhone X may have only just launched, relatively speaking, but rumours around the iPhone 9 / iPhone 11 are already flying free.
The most recent tidbit on the rumour mill is that the next generation of iPhone could come with 5G, following in the footsteps of the iPhone 2, which launched 3G (remember that?) and the iPhone 5, which ushered in 4G. The iPhone 9 (or 11, or XI, or whatever it goes by) might change the game once more, with a revolutionary 5G upgrade. The proof, as ever, is in the red tape; Business Insider recently uncovered an application filed by Apple asking for permission to test “cellular link performance in direct path and multi-path environments between base station transmitters and receivers” using 28GHz and 39GHz bands. This would facilitate 5G, in turn increasing the speed and bandwith of the devices’ cellular connection.
Another intriguing rumour comes from an investment report from KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, whose expert analysis of the situation is, for anyone paying attention to the technology market, rather obvious. Instead of offering up one OLED-equipped phone like the iPhone X, he foresees Apple releasing two OLED devices with stainless steel bodies. Essentially, Kuo believes that Apple will use the iPhone X design and continue it into the traditional iPhone and iPhone Plus form factors.
As part of the move to a new stainless steel body, Kuo thinks that Apple will alter the phone’s design ever so slightly to help improve its signal issues and data transmission problems. It’s unlikely this new design will be a revolution over the iPhone X, but also don’t expect it to look too similar to Apple’s latest flagship – it’ll want to make sure the iPhone X stands apart from all of its other phones.
KGI has also predicted that the iPhone 9 / iPhone 11 will also come with some spec upgrades but won’t come with a rear-facing TrueDepth camera – again, somewhat obvious for those who keep track of technology. As Apple’s TrueDepth camera is used for Face ID and Animoji, it’s a rather costly inclusion for a rear-facing camera that doesn’t need to make use of its functionality.
If that wasn’t enough, KGI believes Apple will kill off Touch ID completely on the iPhone 9 / iPhone 11, meaning the iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus will be the last phones equipped with Apple’s fingerprint recognition technology. It’s also believed that Face ID will come to the next generation of iPads too.
The big question that everyone wants to know, and so far nobody has answered, is how much the next-generation iPhones are going to cost. With the iPhone X hitting £1,000, will the iPhone 9 / iPhone 11 start at the same price, with the Plus variant costing even more? Perhaps Apple will strip back some features and place the iPhone 9 / iPhone 11 at the same price point as the iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus.
Essentially, it all boils down to how well the iPhone X sells. If Apple shifts millions of units more than it expected against the cheaper iPhone 8, we’ll be looking at very expensive iPhones going forward.
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