As we draw near Apple’s September 9th conference, it’s time for me to make some predictions on what I think will be announced.
In Part 1 of my multi-part prediction, I will focus on the changes coming to the iPhone lineup.
Disclaimer: while I have evidence to prove some of my predictions, these are in no way guarantees and should not be treated as such.
I expect Apple to introduce three new iPhones:
The first will be an update to the 5c which will see the addition of a Touch ID sensor and an updated camera (same one found in the current 5s). I expect the ‘iPhone 6c’ will slide in at the price of the current 5c. This will give Apple a fluid line-up with Touch ID sensors on all iPhones.
Replacing the iPhone 5s will be the iPhone 6. While some have speculated that Apple will stray away from the numeric system for identifying iPhones (such as: iPhone Air, iPhone Mini), I think the consumer draw is too strong for them not to call it iPhone 6.
By far the biggest debate over the new iPhones is the screen size, which I expect to be 4.7 inches. At this point, there has been too much evidence to support the theory of a 4.7 inch display to think any different. Resolution is another tricky prediction, but based on research alone, I think Gruber’s prediction of a 1334 × 750, 326 PPI display is spot-on.
Unless Apple has been faking us out for months, the design of the iPhone 6 is evident. I do expect some complaining over the ‘seams’ in the metal shell, but I think they will be less noticeable than in the leaked parts. As has been the case in previous years, the iPhone will be close to the current iPod Touch in size/feel (which will feel extraordinary).
Apple will also stress improvements in camera technology, specifically upgrades to the image sensor and flash.
When it comes to the processor, I can’t see Apple resting on their laurels (and the A8 chip) for another year. I expect to see a A9 chip with improvements to graphic processing and power efficiency (to support the larger displays).
Rounding out the iPhone lineup for 2014 will be the iPhone 6L. Despite having zero evidence to support my theory of the 6L name, I could see Apple using the ‘L’ moniker as a way of emphasizing the larger display.
Speaking of the larger display, I believe it will be 5.5 inches (which will seem massive, because, it is massive). Apple will emphasize the ability to do ‘work’ on the larger display with previews of new versions of their iWork applications and a segment from a third-party developer. Apple will introduce new UI traits which will allow developers to create apps that seamlessly work on both the iPhone 6L and iPads.
The resolution is hard to put a finger on, but I believe it will be a significantly higher resolution than the iPhone 6 (others have estimated a 3x scale, and I tend to agree).
Besides the display, I expect both new phones to be similar in every other way.
The iPhone 6 will come in at the same price as the iPhone 5s and the 6L will carry a $100 premium.
I expect Apple will *finally* introduce a 128GB tier for the iPhone 6 and 6L, but keep the 16GB model to die another day.
The iPhone 6 will be available for purchase on Friday, September 19th. However, customers wanting the 6L will have to wait until October.
Check back later in the week when I predict changes coming to iOS 8, Mavericks, Touch ID and my thoughts on Apple’s upcoming wearable device.