Apple's iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus are expected to be bring alimited changes compared to currently available models - at least in terms of design - leaving questions on whether the new devices could accelerate the company's sales. Potential iPhone upgraders may find themselves stuck in a waiting game as the WSJ also reiterated information other industry watchers have received in recent weeks that the iPhone 7 will be almost identical (visually) to the iPhone 6S and iPhone 6 before it.
Samsung is always mounting pressure to Apple, as the S. Korean company has already jumped into the OLED / curved smartphone screens.
However, Apple has more than enough cash reserves to avoid being unduly worried about possible slow sales, and could also promote the iOS10 software features of the new devices.
According to the WSJ, at a meeting with an Apple executive last month, one of the company’s China-based engineers asked why this year’s model lacked a major design change in keeping with Apple’s usual two-year cycle. The answer, one person at the meeting recalled, was that the new technology in the pipeline will take time to implement. People familiar with the matter said some features that Apple hopes to integrate into iPhones, such as curved screens, weren’t ready for this year’s (2016) models.
For 2017, Apple plans bigger design changes, the 10th anniversary of the original iPhone (iPhone 8 - Apple is expected to skip the '7S' branding). Those changes could include an edge-to-edge organic light-emitting diode, or OLED, screen and eliminating the home button by building the fingerprint sensor into the display. The phone's chassis is also expected to be 'all glass'.