We are just a few hours away from WWDC 2017 where CEO Tim Cook is expected to announce upgrades to Apple’s software and apps, and also a much-rumored hardware product. Prior to the mega conference, a Reddit thread by alleged Foxconn insiders has surfaced online revealing a trove of information about a range of Apple products including the iPhone 8, Siri speaker, and more. Also Read - Apple Podcasts Subscriptions and channels go live in 170 countries starting todayAlso Read - Apple TV+ free trial will now be available for 3 months instead of a year: What to do?
Although the identities of the insiders have been verified according to the subreddit’s moderators, one must take the information with a grain of salt till official confirmation makes it way, The Verge reports. Nonetheless, here’s a roundup of all that the alleged Foxconn insiders revealed over the weekend on the Reddit thread.
Apple iPhone 7 successors
WWDC 2017 is unlikely to witness any announcement surrounding the new iPhone models, but the Foxconn insiders revealed tidbits of information about the iPhone 7 successors. As Apple celebrates the 10th anniversary of the iPhone this year, it is expected that there will be not two, but three iPhone models which will include the iPhone 7s, iPhone 7s Plus, and the iPhone 8. The last model will be a radically redesigned version, and mark a shift from the existing display and design architecture.
Keeping with the tradition, the iPhone 7s and iPhone 7s Plus will bring minor improvements under the hood. The insiders reveal that both the successors to the iPhone 7 lineup will continue to feature an aluminium unibody design and won’t be equipped with wireless charging. ALSO READ: iOS 11: 11 features we wish Apple introduces with its next OS update
Anniversary edition iPhone 8
While the iPhone 7 successors won’t feature anything awe-inspiring, the iPhone 8 — referred by the insiders as iPhone X — will be a redesigned variant. According to them, the new model will look “more like an iPhone 7 with glass and without the capacitive touch module.” Additionally, the rear camera module will be reoriented while the bezels will be thinner than before.
The insiders further revealed that some units of the purported iPhone were being tested with fingerprint sensors layered beneath the display, however, the performance and yield rates were not good. Furthermore, this iPhone model will also have facial detection and retina scanner. Now, this falls in line with earlier rumors about Apple working on incorporating this technology into the front camera sensors of the rumored iPhone. ALSO READ: From iPhone 8 to Siri Speaker: Here s everything Apple is rumored to launch in 2017
In addition to that, the redesigned model will house 3GB of RAM and have a glass body that will allow for wireless charging, according to the insiders. The said model will further be water resistant and won’t be a USB Type-C device, indicating that Apple is sticking with its lightning cable.
MacBook and iMac
As Apple is expected to unveil the refreshed line of its MacBook devices at WWDC this year, the MacBook Air model is likely to see the exit door if the insiders are to be believed. According to the alleged Foxconn employees, Apple is working on overhauling the design of its MacBook models. The company is reportedly working on including more glass and dark black body. If the revelations are to be held true, Apple might also bring back the while Apple light on the device’s cover panel which had been discontinued in 2015. Now, this will mark a second re-introduction of an older design element after the glass sandwich design on the iPhone 8. ALSO READ: Apple rumored to announce refreshed MacBook lineup at WWDC 2017
The employees further revealed that no laptops in the 18-month range will have any sort of touch display other than the TouchBar in the MacBook Pro model. Additionally, the MagSafe charger will return in the coming months. The MagSafe cables attached magnetically and were one of the best features of the MacBook before the company decided to kill it last year.
According to the insiders, the iMac will receive an upgrade in terms of the hardware and design. The upcoming iMac will have smart keys which will be in addition to the TouchBar. However, the full redesigned model with smart keys is being delayed until next year. Apple also tested two e-paper technologies, e-ink in black and white and other a color Qualcomm display. The latter, however, has been canceled owing to an IP dispute.
Perhaps the only ‘new’ highlight at tonight’s WWDC event, the Siri speaker has also been detailed by the employees in the Reddit thread. According to them, the Siri-enabled home speaker will have a design similar to that of the Mac Pro but smaller in size. It is worth mentioning that Apple officials recently admitted that the 2013 Mac Pro refresh was a mistake.
However, the employees noted that Apple tested three designs out of which one design was without camera or screen while another design had both. The device is further said to be powered by the modified A9 chip. The Siri home speaker will be announced soon, according to the insiders, but won’t ship until later this year. While it is yet unclear which design Apple will opt for its Siri home speaker, if it features a display-less design, it will take straight on the Google Home, while a display and camera-based design will put it against the new Amazon Echo Show that launched recently. ALSO READ: Amitabh Bachchan, to Rakhi Sawant: Who we wish should be the voice for Apple s Siri in India
Augmented reality is set to turn out big this year with companies heavily investing in and experimenting with the technology. According to the insiders, Apple calls the project internally as Project Mirrorshades. The glasses feature a Kopin NED Acetate frame, Polarisized or prescription lens with Zeiss smart optics, Bone induction modules Microphones (noise cancellation), Light sensor Accelerometer for step tracking and head movement, app navigation Magnetometer for navigation, Capacitive Pavel Ceramic battery, Apple chipset, [and] Charging circuit BL5 Induction module. ALSO READ: Apple AR glasses rumors strengthen after injury reports
These glasses will further support bodily movement. So for an app like Tinder, the movement of the head for a yes or no would work as a swipe. There will also be a ‘small capacitive strip’ on the arm of the user which will allow one to accept calls and control the volume while an integrated Siri will help place calls. It would further use a prism that will convey NED display image to the lens.
While the test units the insiders saw were only transparent reader lens, but there is a possibility of polarized or prescription lenses to be incorporated in the glasses. The said glasses will retain somewhere around $600 (approximately Rs 38,700) in crystal, champagne, and black colors.
Past patents and reports have indicated at Apple’s progress with the augmented reality technology. Despite the initial failure of the Google Glass, brands like Apple are looking forward to re-introducing the technology in a better fashion. Cook had previously noted in an interview how AR is the way going forward for its non-intrusive nature. Playing safe, the insiders indicated that while the design of the Apple AR glasses was unique, there is a high chance the project will be canceled in totality as the batteries for the glasses are difficult to produce.
New iPad size
As for the iPad, the insiders revealed that while they did not have access to the iPad models, the long-rumored third iPad size is indeed in-the-making. It is expected that Apple will introduce a 10.5-inch iPad Pro this year. It will be similar to the 9.5-inch iPad but feature thinner bezels for a larger display experience. The rumor has also been detailed by KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo. ALSO READ: Apple iPad Pro 2 rumored to launch at WWDC; here s everything we know so far
Some canceled endeavors
Other than the other ‘possibly true’ projects, the insiders listed some canceled projects which include IoT devices like fitness band, headphone designs, and a larger keyboard with backlighting, among others. However, information on the Apple TV is certain to follow later this year. ALSO READ: From iOS 11 to Siri speaker: Here s what to expect from Apple s WWDC 2017