At its annual product launch in San Francisco on Wednesday, the world’s most valuable publicly traded company is expected by blogs and analysts to reveal an iPhone without a headphone jack, paving the way for wireless headphones, a touch-sensitive home button that vibrates, double-lens cameras for the larger ‘Plus’ edition and other incremental improvements, Reuters reports.
Apple typically gives its main product, which accounts for more than half of its revenue, a big makeover every other year and the last major redesign was the iPhone 6, in 2014. The modest updates suggest that this cycle will be three years.
“It looks like part of the reason they are keeping the design the same this year is there are bigger changes they are working on for next year,” said analyst Jan Dawson of Jackdaw Research.
Sales of the iPhone dropped two quarters in a row this year, the first declines in the history of the device. With many consumers who purchased the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus due for an upgrade, Apple may eke out single-digit gains in sales for the 7, Dawson said.
But some consumer technology sites are advising users to hold off on upgrading until the next year’s version, which will mark the 10-year anniversary of the iPhone.
Analysts say the iPhone 8 may feature a wider display that reaches from one edge of the device to the other and a home button integrated into the screen.