Apple's iPhone 11 (AKA: The iPhone XI) will get a release date in a few months. But what will it be like!?
Apple’s moving forward with its FACE ID technology in 2018, bringing it to all of its incoming iPad and iPhone releases.
The face-scanning technology is currently only available on the iPhone X, but that will all change as we move through the new year.
Face ID alternatives are now coming inside Android phones too, and this trend will continue as we move through 2018. Ditto Android phones with notches. In fact, Notches for Android phones are so here to stay that Google has even referenced “notches” inside Android P’s source code.
I don’t particularly like Face ID or the Notch on the iPhone X, neither things really do it for me, so why this many Android phone makers are copying it remains to be seen. I don’t think anyone saw the Notch on the iPhone X and thought: Oh, I wish my phone had one of them!
I’m pretty sure if Apple attached a chicken wing to its iPhone XI plenty of Android phone makers would follow suit later on in the year, never questioning why this feature was implemented in the first or whether or not it was a good idea.
Apple has apparently inked a deal with LG that will secure it a steady supply of FACE ID units for its new iPad and iPhone releases during 2018. This means all iPhones – even the entry-level model – will pack in the technology.
Samsung has confirmed that it will be reducing its investment in OLED during 2018. And the reason? Lower than expected iPhone X demand.
"Samsung Electronics is to slash production at its OLED panel plant in response to customer Apple's decision to reduce the output of the iPhone X following weak demand," notes Asia Nikkei.
It added: "Samsung Display now plans to manufacture organic light-emitting diode panels for 20 million or fewer iPhones at the South Chungcheong site in the January-March quarter. The initial goal was to supply panels for 45 million to 50 million iPhones."
It will also be the first time face-scanning has been used on an iPad, though which model it will appear on first remains to be seen – it could well be kept as an exclusive feature on Apple’s flagship iPad Pro line of devices.
Apple now has two, key suppliers for its face-scanning technology: LG Innotek and Finisar. The recent deal with LG comes off the back of the company’s $821 million investment in new production facilities that will allow it to create more units for the iPhone maker.
Tim Cook is also said to have brokered the deal with LG. This is significant for many reasons, but mostly because Mr Cook seldom handles deals personally, normally leaving it to high-ranking execs to sort out – guess this one must have been an important one!
Apple will release three iPhone models in 2018, and they will all look like the iPhone X, with two of them featuring OLED panels and one an LCD unit. With respect to the iPad, Apple is tipped to once again redesign the unit, making it slimmer and more display-focussed (meaning slimmer bezels).
Nothing has been confirmed as yet, though rumors suggest the iPhone SE 2 could launch at the end of Q1 – so, around March/April time.
Apple's 2018 Plans: THREE iPhone X Style Phones?!
Earlier in the month, we heard a rumor that Apple's 2018 plans would extend to two smartphones with OLED displays in the style of the iPhone X. The theory went that the firm would return to its two-handset-per-launch policy, with this year's triple being an exception, and it was thought we'd basically see an iPhone XI and an iPhone XI Plus both with OLED screens.
Now though, according to a new rumor, Apple has plans for THREE iPhone X-style devices for launch inside 2018. Funny thing is, both the former story and this new one come from the same guy, prominent KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo; a man with a track record you don't want to bet against. Clearly, he's uncovered some new details on top of the previous revelation that now indicate a third iPhone X-style phone in the works at Apple's R&D.
But here's the kicker, the third device, although similarly styled, will use a TFT LCD panel, NOT OLED like the other two.
Kuo's report, picked up by Macrumors, actually illustrates the three handsets expected from his findings and shows that each includes more-or-less the same design as the iPhone X, including the large, near bezel-free display implementation, and the controversial "notch" at the top.
That means all three will also lack a fingerprint scanner, meaning logically all three will use the front-facing TrueDepth camera and Face ID biometric security in place of Touch ID.
The main handset, which we'll call the iPhone XI, has a 5.8in OLED display at 458ppi. Then there's the 6.5in iPhone XI Plus, also with OLED and at 480-500ppi. Finally, the third device is a 6.1in TFT LCD at 320-330ppi. Could this be a new iPhone SE?
Kuo asserts that the two OLED phones will indeed have the same internal specs and these will be premium-grade - essentially these are the flagship models. The third model will be lower specced and pegged as an "entry-level" iPhone, with an expected RRP in the region of $649-$749. Yeah...entry level.
None of this is official yet, of course, but again, Kuo has an impeccable track record so it's quite likely he is onto something here. Of course, it is probably early enough in the development cycle that Apple could change its plans, but if this does happen we'd expect Kuo to publish a follow-up report saying as much.
iPhone XI Plus Model LEAKED: No Hope For iPhone SE 2 In 2018
Hope for a 4in iPhone? Apparently not, if you believe the rumor mill consensus that's forming right now.
Broadly speaking, Apple's plans for late 2018 don't include anything smaller than a 5.8in display and while a "budget" model is apparently on the cards, it's far from the iPhone SE size at a whopping 6.1in.
According to a new report from analysts at BlueFin, Apple's 2018 plans include phasing out the existing iPhone SE and last year's iPhone X, in favor of focusing on the much-rumored trio of new devices in the 5.8in, 6.1in, and 6.5in display sizes.
This basically suggests that unless the affordable model from that trio is dubbed the iPhone SE, the SE brand is basically dead.
"The iPhone 11 Plus should satisfy those unhappy with the iPhone X due to size concerns, while the iPhone 9 device should satisfy more budget-conscious buyers and the aforementioned extension of the iPhone 8 model builds will round out a fairly extensive line-up. We continue to hear that upgrade activity over the past," said BlueFin's report.
However, a new report from 9to5Mac claims that the 6.1in LCD iPhone could launch as much as a month later than the OLED-based models due to some problems Apple is having with the LCD screen technology. Assuming this is true, this would place the 6.1in iPhone release sometime in October.
Another report has emerged reiterating the above regarding a delayed launch of the 6.1in iPhone. Although he has, according to earlier reports, moved on from iPhone analysis, prominent analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, who basically has a flawless track record on iPhone predictions, has published a table with details of each of the three handsets and their specs.
However, according to reports on Kuo's findings by Bloomberg and 9To5Mac, the earlier suggestion that the 6.1in iPhone might not arrive till October is being upheld by the tipster. The reports also tip new color options for the new batch. He also says that contrary to earlier rumors, none of the new iPhones launching inside 2018 will support the Apple Pencil stylus.
Fresh details suggest that Apple may be introducing iPad-like productivity features to the 6.5in iPhone X Plus, according to a report from iHelpBR - a Brazillian website where programmers have dug around in iOS 12 Beta Code.
What they discovered basically lines up with claims made earlier in the year via Bloomberg; that Apple had plans for a phablet "codenamed D33" which packed a 1242 x 2688 resolution display. The programmers forced that resolution in an iOS 12 emulator using the beta 5 build and found that applications such as Calendar and Messages would run in split-screen mode, just like the iPad Pro.
Apple's forthcoming triple-launch of iPhones in September 2018 is hotly anticipated and today we've seen a big leak of spec details for the junior member of the family - the allegedly lower-priced, 6.1in LCD display model.
The other two will be OLED-based like the current iPhone X, and will be a direct successor with a 5.8in display, and a much larger iPhone X Plus with a 6.5in display. All three handsets will reportedly keep the iPhone X design style.
The leak comes via reputable Russian source hi-tech.mail.ru, which reveals that developers have dug out some interesting titbits from Apple's Xcode software which made direct reference to the 6.1in LCD model.
In the code it is referred to as "iPhone xx" "iPhone9.7" and LCP - presumably, this stands for Low-Cost Phone? It also has the model number "N84."
Better yet, some specific components are named; both a DCI-P3 LCD display panel and an Apple A10 processor.
Such a set of hardware would indicate that, even though the new model will not be iPhone SE size, it will be comparable in terms of specs. We already know of course that it'll have front-facing sensors housed in a notch for a 3D face scanning camera and Face ID, while the camera on the back will be a single-sensor. Rumors also point to 3GB of RAM.
Apple's gunning for Samsung once again, this time with its sights set squarely on the newly launched Samsung Galaxy Note 9 and its S-Pen stylus. According to new reports, Apple will make the Apple Pencil accessory - the stylus developed for the iPad Pro tablet line-up - compatible with the new iPhones launching in September 2018.
The word comes via TrendForce, which says that all of Apple's OLED iPhones launched in late 2018 will work with the Apple Pencil - so that's the 5.8in iPhone X successor, and the alleged 6.5in iPhone X Plus; assuming those are the actual names, of course, which is still up in the air.
The cheaper 6.1in LCD handset, presumably, won't be compatible, however.
To date, Samsung has utterly dominated the stylus-driven smartphone or phablet sector with the Galaxy Note series, ever since the first handset to bear the name emerged back in 2011. Oddly enough that's in part because no-one else has really taken an enthusiastic stab at the concept though.
But that could be about to change with Apple eyeing up the feature.
The idea has been rumored for quite some time for Apple's iPhone series, as far back as 2016. However, there are some elements of the claim which are somewhat odd, namely the implication that the current iPad Pro Apple Pencil will be compatible, as opposed to Apple developing a new version to go with the new iPhones.
It's not entirely outside the realms of possibility, but it would be a bit of a bodge job. Samsung's S-Pen docks inside the Galaxy Note neatly and has done since the first-gen. The Apple Pencil is a big old thing and there's nowhere for it to dock on the iPhone owing to its size. This would no doubt put Apple at a disadvantage in the eyes of some consumers interested in a stylus-based phone.
The report also adds that the new iPhones will come in 64GB, 256GB and 512GB storage models, however, it says the LCD version will not have the 512GB option.
Another new report piles on the above rumor regarding the Apple Pencil, this time via Taiwanese publication Economic Daily News, claiming to have information from anonymous "industry insiders".
As per the earlier report, the EDN piece says only the OLED phones will support the Apple Pencil.
Some dummy models have been spotted of the iPhone X Plus - the 6.5in OLED model - and the 6.1in iPhone - aka the "budget" LCD one. Aside from the size, the iPhone X Plus looks almost identical in design to the iPhone X launched in 2017, including a glass and steel bodyshell, a vertical dual-camera array, and the exact same button and key layout.
The 6.1in model pretty much aligns with what we've heard in the past - it has a large display but the bezels are slightly thicker than the OLED design, but it still retains the glass build. It also has a single rear camera and overall looks more like the iPhone 4 in terms of shape and style, though upscaled of course.
More dummy models have leaked courtesy of Twitter tipster Ben Geskin, this time including the "regular" iPhone model with the 5.8in OLED display, which is basically the direct upgrade to the existing iPhone X.
From left-to-right you have the 5.8in OLED iPhone X, the 6.1in iPhone with LCD display, and the iPhone X Plus with a 6.5in OLED screen. As you can see, and as per earlier leaks and details, the regular model and the Plus model have dual-sensor cameras while the 6.1in LCD version has a single rear sensor.
Meanwhile, on the front the LCD model has slightly thicker bezels around the display, but all three have display notches housing front-facing cameras and 3D face scanner for Face ID, as there are no Home keys to be seen.
More image leaks today, this time via Slashleaks with a photo of the 6.1in LCD iPhone's back panel and camera sensor - unlike earlier leaks this is apparently not a dummy unit but is a legit handset snapped in the factory. Notably the camera sensor appears to be much wider than previous iPhones with single-sensor cameras, so although the "budget" model isn't getting a fancy dual-sensor, it is at least apparently getting something pretty capable.
Cheap iPhone X – Yes, But It Won't Be iPhone SE 2
The report adds that the alleged "budget" model will have an RRP of around $700 - not exactly affordable in our books and more in line with flagship pricing. Apparently, the delay for this model comes from trying to fit an LCD display made by LG into an iPhone X-style design; there are reportedly problems with backlight bleeding.
The same source says there aren't any problems with the OLED models and they're expected to go ahead with a September arrival.
Schematics and sizing details have leaked for some of Apple's forthcoming iPhone models, specifically the larger "Plus" model and the alleged "budget" model.
The schematics were dropped by none other than Forbes, lending a fair bit of authenticity to them, they were sourced by contributor Gordon Kelly in cooperation with case-maker Ghostek.
The large Plus model, which may simply be called the iPhone X Plus, iPhone XI Plus, or iPhone 11 Plus, has a 6.5in 19:9 OLED display, while the body dimensions measure 157.2 x 77.1mm, meaning a smaller footprint than even the iPhone 8 Plus.
It's said the metal surround holding the glass panels together will be made of steel.
Kelly says the iPhone Plus model for 2018 will feature a triple-lens camera sensor in line with earlier rumors, while the display notch on the front appears reduced in size from the current iPhone X.
The alleged "budget" iPhone model has a 6.1in display - it's not confirmed but presumably, this is LCD rather than OLED.
It'll feature the iPhone X's Face ID 1.0 and a single-sensor camera. It also has a bigger display notch.
The bodyshell measures 147.12 x 71.52mm and the phone will not feature 3D Touch in the display, presumably a cost-cutting exercise.
The source also claims Apple could reduce the prices of the 2018 models by as much as $300.
And this kinda tells you EVERYTHING you need to know about Apple’s strategy of selling its iPhone X handsets for $1000.
Bottom line; it didn’t work – it was too expensive, and people, en masse, have voted against it with their hard-earned dollars.
The reduction in price is significant in more ways than one. The most notable side effect of such a move will almost certainly be a massive increase in the adoption of the new phones.
$300 is a lot of money, after all.
And with handsets like the OnePlus 6 around, who in their right mind would pay $1000 for an iPhone X anyways!?
iPhone XI Dual-Lens Camera STAYING Put (Just Not on Cheap iPhone XI)
Imaging. It’s one of the most important parts of a modern phone. Apple’s iPhone 8 and iPhone X are no slouches in this regard, but what can we expect from the iPhone XI’s camera in terms of updates?
The general consensus seems to be that Apple will stick with its slow-and-steady update cycle, meaning: nothing too fancy.
There will be minor tweaks and improvements over what came before, but nothing TOO earth-shattering.
The design of the iPhone XI will likely look and feel very similar to the current model.
Apple’s two-year design cycle isn’t going anywhere, unlike the more traditional iPhone design (iPhone 8) which will no longer exist following the release of this year’s iPhone models.
That’s right: the trusty iPhone design with a home button will cease to exist later this year.
From there on out, you’ll be using FACE ID and gestures to go about your iOS business.
The two “premium iPhone XI” models will retain a dual-lens setup, according to reports, while the cheaper, entry-level iPhone XI will be stuck with a single lens sensor.
The iPhone XI WILL NOT Feature A Third Huawei P20 Pro-Style Lens
There were rumors circulating that Apple’s high-end iPhone XI release, likely called the iPhone XI Plus, would feature a third camera sensor.
Turns out this was most likely wishful thinking, though analysts believe this feature WILL come to iPhones in 2019. As I said: slow and steady.
iPhone XI Single Lens Camera
Where things get a little more interesting is Apple’s apparent choice to leave the entry-level iPhone XI with just one camera lens.
This means the camera on this phone will likely be the same one that is inside the current iPhone 8 and given the price of this phone that kind of sucks.
Why not include the iPhone X’s dual-lens camera on the entry model? That’d give users some more value for money. A reason to go for the cheaper model if they couldn’t afford the other models.
Google Pixel 3 XL vs iPhone XI Plus
Google is also only using a single lens camera on its incoming Pixel 3 releases. But there is a difference here: Google uses AI and machine learning to create the effect of dual-cameras, so it is a deliberate move.
And the Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL were two of the best shooters in the business this year, making the incoming Google phones the ones that Apple HAS to beat in this context.
Imaging is hugely important to phone users, this is why so many brands are now drilling down so hard on it. Google is doing A LOT of work with its software and it is paying dividends right now.
Although I do have to say I am kind of disappointed that Apple isn’t including dual-lens setups on all of its 2018 releases given their reported price tags.
iPhone XI Price – How Much Will They Cost?
This is the million dollar question. Most likely, the top-end iPhone XI will cost around $1000-$1300.
The one below that, $800-$1000.
And then the entry-level model COULD be even cheaper than the current iPhone 8, around $550-$650, according to reports. But I’ll believe THAT when I see it…
iPhone 11 Colors
Apple’s next batch of iPhones will be slightly different to what came before.
For starters, when it comes to iPhone XI colors you’ll have more options.
But more on this in a bit.
The most important thing you need to know is this: ALL 2018 iPhones will look like the iPhone X.
That’s right: no more home button.
This is a big deal, both for Apple and its consumers, as it means A LOT of people will have to get used to an entirely new way of interacting with their beloved iPhones.
New iPhone XI Models, New Color Options
How Apple’s iPhone XI colors work is kinda novel – and a bit reminiscent of the iPhone 5c, reports suggest.
Basically, the cheapest model, an LCD iPhone X model, will be available in the following colors: Grey, White, Blue, Red, and Orange
The iPhone XI Plus – AKA the Mac Daddy – will be the largest phone Apple has ever released, with a 6.5in OLED display, and it will be available in the following colors: Black, White, New Gold.
The iPhone XI – the current iPhone X replacement – will be available in standard Apple colors: black, silver, gold.
More Color Equals Cheaper iPhone
This is why I said it reminds me of what Apple did with the iPhone 5c; that phone was cheap, and it came in loads of color options.
It appears as if the cheapest iPhone XI model, the 6.1 LCD model, will be the version that gets the colorful options, while the pricier models will be available in classier, more premium finishes.
iPhone XI Price – How Much Will Apple’s New Phones Cost?
Word on the street suggests Apple will keep the $999/£999 price tag for its 6.5in iPhone XI Plus model.
The cheaper, LCD model will likely retail for $700/£700, while the iPhone X replacement will be somewhere in between.
Now, all we need to know is what the hell they’ll actually be called.