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Trio of New iPhones Expected in September

apple this fall will release three new iphone x-like models with improved features according to a report


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Apple will release three new iPhones in September, according to Bloomberg -- the latest media outlet to publish information from unnamed knowledgeable sources about the company's plans.

Although all the phones will have edge-to-edge displays, like the iPhone X, only two will have OLED screens, Bloomberg reported Monday.

Some Apple insiders have been referring to 2018 as an "S" year, it said. That's a reference to a year when most of the significant changes affect the inside rather than the outside of the iPhone.

The new iPhone lineup marks a change in strategy for Apple, Bloomberg suggested. Instead of seeking to add users, Apple apparently plans to slowly increase the average prices of its phones and boost income from accessory and digital services sales.

People Would Shell Out Money For It. Most people recognize that the best virtual reality headsets cost quite a lot. After all, the best virtual reality experience is worth spending money on. One study found that a majority of consumers would be willing to spend up to $500 for the right virtual reality gear. This is really good news, considering that some of the top headsets for virtual reality cost about $500. There are also plenty of lower-priced ones that can be used for virtual reality as well.

"It is highly likely they will do three new phones," said Tim Bajarin, president of Creative Strategies , a technology advisory firm in Campbell, California.

"They need new models with new features and new price points in order to keep growing the iPhone business," he told TechNewsWorld.

Whopping 6.5-Inch OLED

At the high end of the three iPhone models Bloomberg described will be a model with an edge-to-edge, 6.5-inch OLED display (measured diagonally), which would make it one of the largest phones on the market. Last year's iPhone X was Apple's first model with the high-quality screen, which has been in some competitors' products for some time.

The high-end model will have design features introduced in the iPhone X -- a glass back with stainless steel edges and dual cameras on the back -- and support viewing of app content side-by-side on the large display.

"I think the larger screen will be a big draw," said Tuong Nguyen, a senior principal analyst at Gartner , a research and advisory company based in Stamford, Connecticut.

"Apple has been traditionally lagging in terms of having large-screen offerings equivalent to what's offered by competitors," he told TechNewsWorld.

"I look at what happened with the 6 Plus as an indicator of demand for larger screens," he continued. "Apple saw a big jump in market share with that introduction."

Sensorama was the first attempt at VR experience, this unique concept was developed by a cinematographer named by Morton Heilig. This VR device was aimed at stimulating a person’s senses.

Upgrading iPhone X

The new iPhone's dual app feature didn't score any points with Nguyen.

"I assume it's like the dual-screen functionality seen on Samsung and other devices," he said. "I've had access to this for years, but I haven't found it that compelling. I never use it."

Apple also is expected to release an upgrade of the current 5.8-inch iPhone X, with improvements in the processor and camera.

"Camera performance and quality is increasingly an issue that users care about," said Charles King, principal analyst at Pund-IT , a technology advisory firm in Haywood, California.

"If Apple can deliver the goods there, it stands a chance of getting more consumers on board with higher-priced handsets," he told TechNewsWorld. "That said, I don't see any game-changing improvements that would budge the needle much in terms of Apple's overall share. "

Attraction of X Technology

Expanding technology introduced in the iPhone X across the product line could prove to be popular with consumers.

"There were a good number of consumers who were compelled by the X design, but were unable to get it at its price point," Gartner's Nguyen said. "With the design cascading through the line, it'll become accessible for everyone considering replacing their iPhone."

Oculus VR is a company that launched a Kickstarter project to release virtual reality goggles in the 2010s. Their goggles brought a lot of interest to virtual reality after many years of not a lot of interest by industry or consumers.

However, the pricing on the OLED iPhones isn't likely to budge, with the 5.8-inch model likely to sell at US$999 and the 6.5 model likely to sell for even more.

"It's important to remember that most consumers today are buying their phones on installments," said Ross Rubin, principal analyst at Reticle Research , a consumer technology advisory firm.

"You're paying more per month for a thousand dollar phone, but it's a small jump per month," he told TechNewsWorld.

Bringing Back Color

The third iPhone model expected to be introduced is a so-called budget model. It will have a 6.1-inch LCD display -- not state of the art OLED -- and aluminum edges instead of stainless steel. It will be offered in a variety of colors.

The colors of the aluminum edges won't necessarily be the same color as the glass back of the phone. Apple experimented with colors in 2013 with the iPhone 5c. The all plastic phone wasn't embraced with open arms by the market -- something Apple hopes to change this time around by using metal and glass construction on its budget model.

"While the 5c did OK in a few markets, the company didn't see fit to repeat the experiment until now," King noted. "Unless Apple has come up with significantly new finishes, I doubt that most consumers will be impressed."

The First Head-Mounted Displays – The Telesphere Mask and the Headsight. You might think that strapping a display on a person’s head is a relatively new idea, but it is not. The first head-mounted displays were developed as early as the 1960s. The Telesphere Mask was the first example of a head-mounted display, which provided 3D stereoscopic and wide vision with stereo sound. However, the device lacked certain immersion, because of it being a non-interactive medium. In 1961 two Philco Corporation engineers, Comeau and Bryan, came up with the Headsight. A head-mounted display, much like the Telesphere Mask, the Headsight featured magnetic motion tracking technology, which was connected to a close circuit camera. While the goggles can be named a precursor to modern virtual reality technology, they were not developed for entertainment purposes. Instead, they were developed for the military with the idea that a person would be able to immerse themselves in the remote viewing of dangerous situations.

Business Insider reported the budget model could sell for $550-$650.

As with the original iPhone X, the home button on the new phones will be replaced with a gesture-based control system. In addition, the new models all will use Face ID to unlock the phones.

The two OLED phones may contain dual SIM slots, at least for some regions. The feature will make it easier to switch between carriers when country hopping.

Just Another 'S' Year

From everything that's been reported so far about the new iPhones, King noted, the changes are typical of an "S" year cycle.

"Basically, Apple is making upgrades in performance and camera functions to entice users to buy into its higher pricing schema," he said. "The rumored LCD-based phones follow past company efforts to attract price-sensitive customers and markets to the Apple brand."

The new iPhone configuration will present Apple with a problem it hasn't faced since the iPhone X: coming up with appropriate names for the phones.

Having a smaller phone -- the 5.8-inch OLED model -- sell at a higher price than the larger LCD model may be confusing to consumers, the Bloomberg article suggested.

There are five individuals that have contributed greatly to the title virtual reality including Morton Heilig, Myron Krueger, Ivan Sutherland, Douglas Engelbart, and Jaron Lanier.

During development, the names for the phones reportedly have changed multiple times.

Whatever names Apple gives the phones and whatever the final products look like, chances are good they will be hits.

"Given consumer response in the past and their willingness to trust Apple's design decisions," Creative Strategies' Bajarin observed, "I expect whatever Apple brings out will be highly successful."

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