It is not all good in Apple’s iPhone division — it is a rumor of course.
A stack of reports last week point at various features in the upcoming, OLED-screened iPhone 8 — or the iPhone Pro, or iPhone X, or whatever its name will be — that are causing problems for Apple’s engineers. And believe it or not, the list is quite long.
Clearly, all of these reports can be wrong, but now that we’re getting close to the September launch of the new iPhones, chances increase that they’re not.
A few days ago, Apple-focused blogger John Gruber tweeted that he heard that the wireless charging feature in the new iPhone “might be late.”
And on Tuesday, a Fast Company source confirmed that wireless charging is causing problems for Apple, but added that it’s the software, not hardware, that’s problematic.
If true, that could mean the iPhone 8 will hit the market wireless charging-ready, with the feature enabled later, when the software is ready.
Probably the best documented possible feature of the upcoming iPhone 8 is the Touch ID, which may or may not be located under the screen. We’ve heard tons of rumors about it being problematic, though we have also seen a report or two that said yes, the under-screen fingerprint scanner is ready to go.
There’s still some time for Apple to perfect the technology, and the fact that Qualcomm and Vivo have recently launched similar tech (though it’s not yet available in a phone) is promising. But time is running out, and Fast Company says there’s a “sense of panic” in Apple’s ranks as deadlines approach.
In light of the possible Touch ID issues, another feature came into the spotlight: 3D scanning. Initially thought to be just another way to do biometrics (and better selfies), recent reports said that 3D scanning might actually replace Touch ID altogether.
We don’t think that’s likely, and it probably wouldn’t be a good idea. But whatever the 3D scanning is for, we can now add it to the list of iPhone 8 things that might be late.
According to Fast Company‘s source, even the 3D scanning sensor is causing problems for Apple — and once again the software, not hardware, is the culprit.
Yes, even the very screen that the new iPhone will come with might be problematic. Reports in this vein have admittedly mostly been from questionable sources, but we’ve seen a few. A recent report from Digitimes said that due to the scarce supply of OLED panels, only 3 million to 4 million iPhones will be ready for shipping at launch time.
Samsung has been shipping tons of phones with OLED screens — curvy ones, too — for years now, so it’s a bit harder to believe that Apple won’t be able to secure enough panels for its new iPhone. But perhaps the under-screen fingerprint scanning tech requires a different type of OLED panels, which are tougher to produce at volume.
Basically every new feature or technology Apple is rumored to introduce with its iPhone 8 is rumored to be late or problematic in this or that regard. Some of these reports could be wrong, but it’s very unlikely that they’re all wrong, and there’s mounting evidence that Apple will be forced to push back what is possibly the most important phone launch in the past couple of years.
How far back? Previously, we’ve heard October or November, but nothing is certain at this point. But the possibility that Apple is having so many issues this late in the game is worrying, and expectations could not be higher.