We haven’t heard any semi-credible gossip on next-gen iPhones in over a week, which must be some kind of record, given the incessant rumormongering of the past few months. But Wall Street analysts are back in business today, once again foreshadowing production problems and possible commercial launch delays.
As previously speculated, Apple badly wants to free up space around the OLED screen of the super-high-end iPhone 8, aka X, Edition or Pro. A little company called AuthenTec that the Cupertino-based tech giant acquired for over $350 million back in 2012 should be able to help with the Touch ID button’s elimination.
Unfortunately, its under-glass fingerprint sensor solution’s yield rate “remains low”, according to Cowen and Company managing director Timothy Arcuri, and Apple “seems unwilling to use other vendors’ products.”
Unless internal development and manufacturing rapidly picks up, there are a few possibilities for the iPhone 8, none of which sounds ideal. The $1,000 or so handheld could have its actual rollout stalled a few months, or follow the Galaxy S8’s suit and move the fingerprint reader to the back. Finally, killing Touch ID technology altogether and relying solely on facial recognition for biometric authentication is also an option, albeit a very unlikely and risky one.
Meanwhile, Arcuri predicts all three 2017 iPhone models will pack 3GB RAM, with the lower-end 4.7 and 5.5-inch variants offering your choice of 32, 128 or 256GB storage, and the premium 5.8 (or 5.2-incher) sold in 64 and 256 gig configs only, with “two packs of batteries” providing “extended battery life.” So, yeah, the waiting may well pay off.