iPhone 7 release date rumours, new features, patents

While we don’t expect Apple to introduce the Apple iPhone 7until September, we already have some idea of what the next iteration of the phone might offer. We could see a new design that eliminates the 3.5mm earphone jack. If that is the case, Apple will most likely come up with a way to use the Lightning port to connect the device to a set of earphones. We also expect the new iPhone 7 to be waterproof and offer a larger capacity battery.

Today, leaked photos allegedly showing the backlight for the iPhone 7 have surfaced revealing a new design. Side-by-side pictures comparing the leaked part with the one used in the Apple iPhone 6s show flex cables located on the left side of the iPhone 7backlight while the iPhone 6s backlight has it on the opposite side.

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The iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus only launched September 2015, but a few months on we’re starting to excitedly think about what this year’s iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus could bring. The web is full of speculation about new iPhone(s) that Apple will launch in 2016, and in this article we gather all the rumours about the iPhone 7: release date, design, specs and new features, from wireless charging to a touchscreen display with built-in Touch ID. Plus any leaked photos of iPhone 7 components we get hold of, and all the cool iPhone 7 concept illustrations and videos that designers have come up with.
We’re sure to see a next-generation iPhone in 2016, but what will the new iPhone 7 look like? (Traditionally, Apple alternates between internal upgrades for the ‘S’ update, then a physical redesign for the full-number update, so a completely redesigned chassis is likely.) What new features should we expect? And when will the iPhone 7 come out? We round up the evidence to bring you everything there is to know about the iPhone 7 so far.

In this article we talk about the 4.7-inch iPhone 7 – the follow-up to the iPhone 6s. If you’d like to read about the 5.5-inch iPhone 7 Plus, take a look at our iPhone 7 Plus release date and new features rumour roundup.

Bookmark this page for a regularly updated summary of all the information currently available – and all the rumours doing the rounds – related to the iPhone 7: details, clues, hints and rumours, as well as any leaked photos of the iPhone 7 that emerge. We’ll update the article whenever we hear worthwhile new information (or scurrilous but interesting gossip) on the subject of Apple’s next iPhone.

Also read: Apple rumours and predictions for 2016 | iPad mini 5 rumours

Main sections in this article:

Macworld’s verdict on the iPhone 7
Introduction: What is the iPhone 7?
iPhone 7 launch date rumours
iPhone 7 design rumours (updated 3 February with new design leaks and 26 Jan with even more reports that Apple is ditching the headphone jack)
iPhone 7 new features rumours (updated 19 Jan with iOS 10 rumours)
iPhone 7 specification rumours (updated 19 Jan with LiFi rumours)
iPhone 7 images and videos: leaked images, concept illustrations etc (updated 26 Jan with new concept images)
If you’re looking for information about the current iPhone range, by the way, read our iPhone 6s review, Phone 6s Plus review, iPhone 6 review, iPhone 6 Plus review and iPhone 5s review; and our iPhone buyers’ guide.

For more rumour-mongering and future-gazing, take a look at Apple patents and the clues they offer about the future of iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch & Mac.

In a nutshell: Macworld’s verdict on the iPhone 7
In our iPhone 7 rumour roundup we cover a lot of ground: you’d be amazed by the clues, hints and general speculation about the iPhone 7 that people have managed to dig up. But for those who don’t want all the detail, the following section sums up our verdict on the whole thing. Consider it a sort of TL;DR for the article as a whole.

In a nutshell, then, we reckon:

1) Apple will launch two new iPhones in September 2016, and just possibly three. The theory that Apple will push the main iPhone 7 launch forward to summer 2016 seems thin to us, but it is possible we will see an update to the 4-inch iPhone line earlier than the autumn, and maybe even as soon as March 2016.

2) We expect a 4.7-inch phone (called the iPhone 7), and a 5.5-inch model (the iPhone 7 Plus). If Apple does make another 4-inch iPhone (which, thanks to the success of the larger iPhones, is by no means a certainty) then we think it’ll be called something like the iPhone 7 mini, but iPhone 6c and iPhone 6e are possibilities too.

 

3) The iPhone 7 is likely to get a substantial physical redesign after the largely identical iPhone 6/6s generations. It’s too early to know what direction Apple will pick, but it’s likely to be thinner than ever: removing the headphone jack would be one way to help achieve this, forcing music fans to use wireless Bluetooth headphones, or headphones that connect via the Lightning port, or an adaptor. The ‘no headphone jack’ rumour is starting to gather momentum, with multiple ‘confirmations’ via multiple (but anonymous) supply chain sources, although we’ve yet to see firm evidence ourselves.

 

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