Published on September 11th, 2017
Think you know everything about the iPhone 8? Think again. Despite detailed design leaks, a look at the upgraded (if noticeably protruding) camera and the big gamble on a radical unlocking system, a slew of new information about Apple AAPL -1.64%’s most expensive iPhone ever has broken over the weekend.
Reports claim a “disgruntled employee” might be behind it but, whatever the source, the final version (aka ‘Gold Master’) of iOS 11 has been leaked and it contains a treasure trove of information, including a potential late name change and new Apple Watch.
But the majority of data is about the features of Apple’s biggest iPhone upgrade in generations. So let’s break down what the iOS 11 GM reveals: The All New iPhone Design – numerous leaks have shown off the iPhone 8 design (including my own exclusive) but iOS 11 GM contains multiple icons and graphics illustrating the almost bezel-less new display and ‘notch’ at the top which holds the front facing camera and new 3D sensors (more on those later).
1. iPhone 8’s new OLED display has a cut-out ‘notch’ which can clearly be seen in this prototype.
2. True Tone iPhone – iOS 11 GM code also shows the iPhone 8 will upgrade to the iPad Pro’s True Tone Display for professional grade colour accuracy.
3. New Aspect Ratio, New Resolution – iPhone 8 was long expected to switch to a Samsung-matching elongated 18.5:9 aspect ratio and iOS 11 GM confirms this along with an increased native resolution of 2436 x 1125 pixels.
4. Smarter Power Button the humble power button will be enlarged on the iPhone 8 and in addition to its existing power/wake/lock functionality 9to5Mac found double presses activate Apple Pay cards while holding it down starts “Siri”. The latter will be a useful shortcut with the home button being removed.
5. Home Button Becomes Home Bar – previous iOS 11 betas suggested a new user interface which the iOS 11 GM confirms. On the iPhone 8 a virtual bar will sit at the bottom of the screen replacing the home button and it can be swiped up to close apps and return to the home screen.
6. Six Core Apple A11 – just like the A10 chip in the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus, iOS 11 GM shows the A11 in the iPhone 8 will also retain a six core design.
7. Wireless Charging – While regularly discussed, iOS developer Guilherme Rambo has now found iOS 11 GM explicitly states wireless charging will be present. It will be based on the Qi standard, but incompatible with existing Qi-based chargers and require Apple licensing. It will also only operate at 7.5 watts, so it won’t offer the faster charging speeds of the latest Qi standards.
8. Apple Pay via Face ID – with Touch ID ditched, developer Jeffrey Grossman has discovered strings of code in iOS 11 GM stating that Apple’s ‘Face ID’ facial recognition replacement can be used to authenticate payments instead when used in combination with a double click of the power button.
9. Dynamic Status Bar – as the ‘notch’ breaks up the status bar on the top bezel of the iPhone 8, iOS 11 GM reveals it will contain new animations to replace the lost space. Those found include charging and a ‘double height’ expansion for showing more detailed information like location tracking, incoming calls or recording.
10. Finally famed Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo showed he did not want to miss out on this avalanche of last minute information, publishing a new report with two key iPhone 8 titbits.
11. New Front Facing 3D Sensors – building on past leaks about this technology, Kuo adds detail saying the depth sensing module is composed of a structured light receiver, proximity sensor, ambient light sensor, front camera, and structured light transmitter. If it works as predicted, the iPhone 8 will gain unparalleled facial recognition accuracy which will be used for phone unlocking, better selfies and even ‘animojis’.
Black Bezels Only – Kuo also confirms my July exclusive that, regardless of which color you buy, the front of the iPhone 8 will be black. Apple wants to hide the iPhone 8’s top bezel notch when its display is off.
Throw all this information on top of the other iPhone 8 specs avalanche and Apple must wish it had announced the launch sooner. But fear not, game time is almost here…