The countdown to the release of the iPhone 8 is well and truly on, and we thought you might like a handy place to catch all of the latest rumors and news surrounding Apple's 10th anniversary device. We'll be updating this page between now and drop day, so be sure to head here for the latest news.
Latest Update: iOS developer Steven Troughton Smith has tweeted that he found "API evidence" that the iPhone 8's display will hold a hold button that could be resized or even hidden. Scroll down to the "Design" sections for more information.
The future of Apple may change drastically after the iPhone 8 release date, and it’s no secret that their dev and design teams are grinding away to ensure the iPhone 8 doesn’t, well, suck as much as the iPhone 7. Right now, the rumor mill is a-circulatin’ about the iPhone 8 release date, specs, special features, price and design elements, and rather than leave it all to speculation, I decided to put all the best rumors right here in the open.
Before you continue reading, it’s important to clarify that these are all still rumors. While they’re popular rumors backed up by more than a little speculation, and while I did my due diligence in trying to find rumors backed up by some semblance of evidence (or research other than baseless conjecture), they’re rumors, nonetheless.
We have roughly eight months before we see the unveil of Apple’s new iPhone, but these are the things the tech world is buzzing about:
iPhone 8 Release Date
UPDATE, August 9, 2017: It was previously reported that the iPhone 8 would most likely miss its September launch date due to problems with its Touch ID feature, but now Apple itself has announced that the iPhone 8 will be released alongside the 7s and 7s Plus models this September.
Unfortunately, as Engadget point out, a rushed release date likely means that fewer phones will be available at the launch and until the end of 2018. Expect long lines if you want to be on of the first to get your hands on the iPhone 8.
The release of the iPhone 8 may be delayed by weeks, unless Apple can fix problems with its Touch ID feature. The problem is integrating the Touch ID with the iPhone 8’s edgeless OLED display. According to Barron's, Apple only has until August to get the feature working. If it doesn't, the tech company can decide to delay rollout or scrap Touch ID altogether and rely on just facial recognition for device unlocking. Removing fingerprint scanning could cause security problems, as well as potentially locking users out of their phone if there were any image quality issues with the face scanner.
CNET has reported that due to technical difficulties, the iPhone 8 might miss its expected September launch date. According to the report, it’s the OLED screen updates that are causing the production delay. The problem could mean the phone won't be released until October or November.
The easiest and most prevalent rumor to speculate about is the iPhone 8 release date, mostly because every iPhone since the iPhone 5 (with the exception of the SE) has been released in September. Apple holds a special announcement event every year – usually in the first or second week of September – so expect things to stay the same for the iPhone 8.
Of course, that’s not to say Apple couldn’t mindfuck everyone and just release a less-awful version of the iPhone 7 and save the iPhone 8 for a 2018 release. Luckily, given the decline in sales and orders for the iPhone 7, coupled with the literal months of bad press for Apple’s whole “Courage” thing, it seems very unlikely that they’d release something else under the iPhone 7 moniker.
iPhone 8 Design
UPDATE, August 10, 2017: iOS developer Steven Troughton Smith tweeted that found “API evidence” that the iPhone 8’s display will hold a hold button that could be resized or even hidden. This means the entire screen will be able to go full screen for videos and games. The information comes from the HomePod's firmware leak that seemed to have the iPhone 8’s code within it. See the tweets below for a mockup of Smith's findings.
YouTuber Marques Brownlee recently got his hands on an iPhone model that brings together all the leaks so far. The model shows a similar phone silhouette to the edge-to-edge 5.8-inch, all-glass OLED display shown in the Apple Homepod leaks (see the tweet below the video).
The model also features a glass back for wireless charging, camera bump and larger power button. Watch the video below to get your closest look at what the iPhone 8 will look like.
Prospects for the iPhone 8 design are looking bright, seeing as the phone is due for a serious upgrade. In fact, Apple designers caught a lot of flack for having the same design for their last three model releases.
So far, speculations point to some pretty massive changes coming to the iPhone 8 design, including a return to the all-glass body, harkening back to the iPhone 4 days. And before all you clumsy nerds freak out over the idea of a brittle all-glass body, understand that new-age hardened Gorilla Glass makes the design more feasible than ever before.
There’s also big talk about a curved edge-to-edge display, which would most likely integrate the home button, touch ID (or it's equivalent, which we'll get to in a minute,) and front camera into the screen itself, and bring the iPhone 8 up-to-speed with the competition.
Now, the TouchID. When Apple first introduced the fingerprint scanning feature on the iPhone 5S, fans were wowed by its accuracy and relatively straight-forward setup and ease of use. However, Forbes recently reported that the next iPhone could lose the beloved feature for something far more advanced and futuristic — a front-facing facial recognition laser scanner.
The downside is that users would have to hold the phone upright and stare directly at the front camera, with no "foreign objects" — glasses, bangs, facial hair — obscuring the the scanning process.
While we're unlikely to see any design leaks until the small weeks and months before the official release, many concept designers are already imagining what they think the new phone will look like. The one seen in the video below shows the bezel-less display, as well as a completely overhauled home button.
iPhone 8 Specs and Features
Apple’s leaked code confirms the existence of a new infrared-based facial recognition system, similar to that previously reported by Bloomberg. The new technology includes a depth sensor that scans faces to unlock the phone in a “few hundred milliseconds.” The move is apparently to increase security as the facial scanner collects more biometric data than the previous Touch ID system.
Could the iPhone 8 come with bundled AirPods? A leaked JP Morgan investor note obtained by 9to5mac certainly suggests so. This may prove unlikely, however, as not only is there a current six-week wait for the earphones, but their $159 price tag would also drive up the price of the phone considerably. Additionally, the same report also says the phone will come with a 5.85-inch display stretching edge-to-edge on the left and right with top and bottom bezels. Stay tuned for more information on this one.
A new report from the Wall Street Journal has reaffirmed a few longstanding rumors about the device, as well as revealing a shock plan to remove the lightning port. According to the report, at least one new iPhone model will be available with a curved OLED screen similar in style to that of the Samsung Galaxy S7. All versions, however, are said to drop the Lightning port in favor of the more popular USB-C. If true, it would be the first time Apple has used an industry standard port on the phone — i.e. the same one found on competing products like Android phones.
When the iPhone 7 dropped with a standard and incredibly outdated LCD screen, critics and consumers alike were shocked. AMOLED is the industry standard at this point, and Apple’s defiant move to stay with its outdated display was mindboggling. Consequently, rest assured the folks at Apple already know the iPhone 8 specs and features are going to have to be damn competitive in order to bring the legendary smartphone back into the limelight.
Luckily, if the speculation is true, it appears as though someone at Apple heard all the criticism, because the iPhone 8 is expected to feature an OLED—possibly even AMOLED—display. With AMOLED being pretty standard within the Android ecosystem, we wouldn't be surprised if Apple took this proven route as well. It’s tough to call what kind of treatment the display will get, but if Apple drops the ball again, they may not be able to come back from it.
One of the biggest rumors about the iPhone 8 specs and features is screen size options. Most rumor sites are reporting that, in addition to the standard 4.7- and 5.5-inch screens currently available on the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus, the iPhone 8 will also receive a 5.8-inch treatment. Although, it’ll be interesting to see how the 5.5 will compete with the 5.8, or how Apple will make the difference between the two models appealing enough for consumers.
Additionally, there’s still light talk of a hybrid 5-inch model that features vertical dual-lens cameras. Of course, there’s no telling how accurate that may or may not be.
The iPhone 8 specs are also rumored to feature an even newer A11 processor, which is some pretty big news that’ll again make the new iPhone the fastest smartphone in the world (by far).
According to rumors, the new iPhone is also headed for an upgrade to an IP68 water and dust resistance rating, which means it’ll be able to stay submerged in up to 1.5m of water for up to 30 minutes, which will finally put it up to snuff with Samsung’s Galaxy S7.
Oh, and there might be wireless charging—finally.
iPhone 8 Camera
Truthfully, I can’t really call it with the iPhone 8 camera. Logic (and my sincere wishes) dictates that the iPhone 7 Plus’s awesome dual cameras will make an appearance as standard equipment on all future iPhone models. Unfortunately, a lot of the rumors circulating about the iPhone 8 camera say that it’ll still only feature dual cameras in the more high-end models.
According to KGI Securities analyst and legendary Apple product foreteller Ming-Chi Kuo in a report released the day the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus became available for pre-order, the iPhone 8 will only feature a dual camera on the “iPhone 8 Plus” because the consumer-wide appeal of the high-tech lenses would only attract photographers and “avid picture takers.”
Sorry, Kuo, but I’m calling bullshit on that hypothesis.
The only other news for the cameras is that the rear-facing camera may feature an upgraded 14MP sensor, and that the front-facing camera may be integrated into the display itself.
iPhone 8 Price
Update: While Initial reports suggested that the iPhone 8 could cost in excess of $1000, Forbes has now reported that the phone could cost considerably less than first thought, starting from around $850. Reportedly, it was Samsung’s decision to push highly compact 5.8-inch and 6.2-inch displays into the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8 Plus that led Apple to re-think its pricing strategy.
Finally, let’s get down to brass tacks—the iPhone 8 price. The iPhone 7 starts at $649 and the iPhone 7 Plus at $769. According to baseline speculation—and let me place very large emphasis on the fact that this is basic-ass speculation—the iPhone 8 price will probably come in somewhere in the $1,100-1,200 area.
While some speculation ends up becoming true, I doubt Apple would boost the iPhone 8 price significantly. While differently spec'd versions might push it up, such as with more RAM, it's more likely to stay around the same point as iPhone 7.
Of course, if I’m the one making the baseless guesses here, I’d be willing to say that there’s no way in hell Apple would be stupid enough to nearly double the price of their next iPhone, especially when the competition won’t be anywhere near that expensive.
Then again, what do I know?
Also check out the 10 features we want to see in the iPhone 8.