It will be three years this fall since we first saw the iPhone X, a handset that injected new life into a design Apple had used since the iPhone 6 of 2014. Now, finally, it looks like Apple is ready to show off another all-new look.
That new design, according to a Bloomberg report which closely matches claims previously made by analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, will borrow from the look of iPad Pro. This means an iPhone with flat aluminum edges, a flat display with no gentle curves at the sides, and a new rear camera system with three lenses and LiDAR for improved 3D scanning and augmented reality capabilities.
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A flat-sided, squared-edged aluminum chassis harks back to the iPhone 4 and 5, which many regard as the most attractive Apple handsets of all time.
The new report says Apple plans to introduce four models of its iPhone later this year, likely in its usual September launch time frame. This range is said to include two models of iPhone Pro, one that's small and one that's large, plus a pair of lesser handsets to replace the iPhone 11. For now, it isn't clear if the new square-sided design will be exclusive to the iPhone Pro launch, or be rolled out to the whole range.
The larger of the two new iPhone Pros, from this new report, looks to have a slightly larger display than the 6.5-inch screen of the current iPhone 11 Pro Max, and the Face ID notch on the front will likely be smaller too. This updated design closely matches claims made by Kuo, that the new iPhone model will have screen size options of 5.4 and 6.7 inches.
All four models of new iPhone are also expected to come with 5G technology for the first time.
Apple is also said to be launching a new version of the HomePod smart speaker later this year, which will be reportedly smaller and cheaper than the current $349 model, along with a rival to Tile Bluetooth trackers which will be called AirTags.
It remains to be seen if Apple's development and eventual mass-production of the new iPhone range will be impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. The virus first closed down factories and Apple's Chinese supply chain, then caused the closure of retail stores worldwide. Now though, with China beginning to reduce lockdown measures — and the recent launch of a new iPad Pro and MacBook Air — Apple might still be able to meet its usual September launch date for the new handsets.
Separately, the company is imminently expected to announce a new budget iPhone, either called the iPhone SE 2 or iPhone 9. This is said to borrow the chassis and display of the iPhone 8, plus the processor and other hardware from the iPhone 11, and be priced at around $400.
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