Tom 2016-04-18 11:48 pm
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KGI Analyst: 2017 Will be the Year of Glass for iPhone

KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo is known for his reliability when it comes to predictions regarding the Apple iPhone. His latest insider intel on upcoming Apple trends paints an interesting picture for 2017: The next iPhone model after the iPhone 7 this fall will have a case made entirely from glass. Kuo derives his information from contacts in the Apple supply chain and, more often than not, his predictions have been correct. Will the iPhone after the iPhone 7 be a more groundbreaking and innovative device?

An iPhone made of glass

Apple is always on the lookout for industrial design trends, taking the materials its devices are made of (and the accompanying production processes) to the limit. The year 2017, according to Apple’s current rhythm, should actually mean the release of an s-version of the iPhone 7, such as an “iPhone 7s” and not the iPhone 8. While Apple’s performance updates between the major iterations have mainly focused on improving upon the internal hardware and shortcomings of the flagship devices, adding a new material or changing things up a bit is not out of the question. A fully glass iPhone would however be more of a highlight for the next major iteration, commenters on the web agree. Either way, having a device with glass on both the front and the back as well as the sides would differentiate the iPhone from the rest of the market on the surface, which is where most consumers tend to look for innovations.

Grippy Glass and an OLED display

Insiders have been the heralds of the iPhone with OLED display technology for a while now, but their visions have never materialized into something tangible. We’ll see how that turns out. Kuo’s rumor about a grippy surface texture are also interesting: An iPhone made of glass should survive a drop or two in practice to be of any use to consumers, apparently Apple is experimenting with material techniques that are supposed to make the device easy to hold and less likely to slip out of your hand to come crashing into the ground.