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iPhone 7 rumours: redesigned antenna lines, but no OLED until 2017

Caitlin McGarry | June 21, 2016
What would you want to see in the iPhone 7? (Yes, longer battery life is on our wishlist, too.)

We still have months of iPhone 7 rumours to deal with until Apple CEO Tim Cook takes the stage to show off the newest and greatest smartphone, probably sometime in September. Yes, that is a long time. But there are so many rumours swirling about regarding what Apple is working on that we decided to put them all in one place and assess whether they seem legit or absurd.

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What would youwant to see in the iPhone 7? (Yes, longer battery life is on our wishlist, too.)

What's the latest?

The rumour:  Apple's suppliers are gearing up to switch to OLED (organic light-emitting diode) screens, but not on this year's upcoming iPhone. This isn't a brand-new rumour - analyst Ming-Chi Kuo predicted a switch to analogue for the 2017 iPhone, which he also thinks will have a glass front and back (see 'Glass on both sides?' below). But now we have new evidence: according to a recent Bloomberg report, Applied Materials, an Apple supplier, has received almost four times the amount of orders for its display-making machines. This jump is linked to Apple retooling the iPhone manufacturing process to include OLED screens in the spring of 2017.

Plausible? OLED screens are thinner, require less battery power and provide higher definition, so it's very plausible that Apple would opt to use them instead of LCD. It's actually surprising that the iPhone-maker hasn't made this switch sooner. And if you were hoping that perhaps 2016's iPhone 7 would go OLED, it seems there is not enough time in the production timeline, and the 2017 iPhone would be the soonest we'd see this switch. According to Applied Materials, it takes about nine months for its machines to be built, delivered and installed.

Conflicting photos leaks?

The rumour: Forbes reported that these leaked photos allegedly depict the iPhone 7 chassis. First posted on French tech site, NowhereElse.fr, the photos suggest that Apple's forthcoming iPhone will have double speakers on the top and the bottom, creating a quad array audio experience similar to the iPad Pro. The photos also seem to confirm, yet again, that the iPhone 7 will not have a headphone jack. Lastly, this iPhone 7 chassis has the flash repositioned underneath the camera, instead of right next to it. But hold on... according to another recent iPhone 7 photo leak picked up by 9to5Mac, the flash will remain where it is on the 6s. So now we have conflicting rumours. Both sets of photos, however, do show that Apple has redesigned the antenna lines. Instead of horizontal lines, the antenna lines on the iPhone 7 will allegedly be traced along the top and bottom edge of the device.

 

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