With most of the major Android smartphone makers having unveiled their flagship models for 2019, attention now shifts to Cupertino to see what Apple has in store. Although some improvements are predictable, there are some that updates that we should while there are a few wild cards out there as well. What can we expect from the 2019 iPhone?
The easy predictions for the iPhone 11
Apple uses the iPhone launch each year to showcase the work its been doing in creating its own silicon. So there's no doubt we'll see a faster A13 Bionic chip announced. When the iPhone XS was released, Apple boasted that the A12 was about 15% faster than the previous generation.
Apple has taken the iPhone X design that introduced in 2017 and made it the template for all of their new iPhone models. With three new iPhone models this year, the iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max and iPhone XR, Apple has made the near-bezel-less design their standard. The two premium models, the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max have identical specifications other than display size. That means everything I cover in this review should apply to both flagship models. After a couple of weeks using the iPhone XS, here's what I've learned.
The current iPhone family offer three storage options; 64, 256 and 512GB. I expect the 64GB option to disappear from the market with the option for 1TB added as Apple plays catch up with Samsung.
Forget about everything going USB-C
Despite adding USB-C to the iPad Pro last year, the rest of the iPad range has retained the old Lightning connector. This seems to be because Apple has shifted its past policy on retaining backwards compatibility.
Two-way wireless charging
With the new Apple AirPods now offering a wireless charging case, there's little doubt that Apple won't introduce two-way charging.
Apple will start to whet our appetites for the new iPhone in June during its major developer event, WWDC. That's when they'll take the wraps off the next release of iOS.
Apple typically announces the next iPhone during an event in September each year. They'll likely stick to that this year with new phones to ship later that month. If there's a radically different model included in the new range, that may come a little later, perhaps in November.
And remember, if you plan on being an early adopter, get in early on pre-order schemes as new iPhones are usually quite scarce in the first month after release.
What will the new iPhone be called?
Apple's system for naming iPhones changed when the iPhone X (and it's not an "ex" - it's a "ten") was released. The next year, the "Plus" label was also dropped in favour of "Max".
This year I expect we'll get an iPhone 11, but it will use the Roman numeral so it'll be called the iPhone XI. The larger variant will get the Max treatment.
Screen sizes will change
We're pretty early in the rumour season but Trusted Reviews is quoting a Japanese report with “trustworthy sources connected with suppliers in China” that the smaller iPhone XS, with a 5.8-inch display will replaced with a slightly larger 6.1-inch OLED screen.
Triple cameras are coming in the next iPhone
The same report also says triple-lens cameras will be added to the new iPhones. That's also highly likely given everyone else is doing it and Apple won't want to be left behind.
Some wild speculation
A folding iPhone
There's some chance a folding iPhone could make an appearance. Much as the first iPhone X was a radical departure from previous designs, Apple could release, or at least announce, a folding iPhone later this year.
We know that Apple is working on a folding phone but we also know Apple doesn't like being an early adopter.
Most of its product successes have come from looking at the rest of the market and then taking what they see and applying their own take.
We saw that with MP3 players and the first iPod, netbooks and the MacBook Air, and smartwatches and the Apple Watch.
USB-C could appear - in an iPhone XI Pro
I'm disappointed that Apple hasn't gone all-in with USB-C. Their play with the iPad Pro suggested that a change was in the air but Apple seems to want to keep customers happy at a time when the smartphone market is struggling to grow.
However, I'm wondering whether there will be an option for USB-C connectivity made available.
Last year, Apple released the iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max and iPhone XR. Perhaps this year we'll see and iPhone XI, iPhone XI Max and iPhone XI Pro.
The Pro will have the larger display, skip on the smallest storage option and offer 1TB, feature the triple-camera array (retaining an updated dual-camera set-up for the "base" models and throw in USB-C to start the transition.