In yet another staggered feature rollout, Twitter has begun enabling full landscape support for its iOS app on the iPhone 6 Plus. Like with many of Apple’s bundled applications, Twitter app users on the larger, 5.5-inch iPhone can navigate their Timelines, Tweet, and Direct Message in landscape mode…
There is always a lot of buzz about Apple’s next iPhone – virtually all year long, but especially as we approach September, when Apple traditionally unveils the Cupertino-based company’s latest phone-offerings. However, there seems to be some confusion with Apple’s smartphone nomenclature, and while it is actually quite simple it can be hard to wrap your head around. We are going to fix that, though, and also explain exactly why this year’s iPhone will not be called the iPhone 7.
First of all, a brief history of the iPhone line-up is in place. The original iPhone was not simply called the iPhone 1, or even the iPhone when released – it was actually called the iPhone 2G, as it only featured cellular capabilities on the 2G (Edge) network. While this was not complicated in its own right, the difficulties started when Apple released their next phone. Simple marketing techniques prevented Apple from following the iPhone 2G with a phone called the ”iPhone 2”, and Apple similarly wanted to showcase the fact that this phone featured 3G capabilities. This led Apple to name their next phone the iPhone 3G. This was still relatively simple though – the iPhone 2G was followed by the iPhone 3G.
However, as you all know, Apple couldn’t really continue this trend by naming the next iPhone the iPhone 4G, as the 4G LTE network wouldn’t be ready for wide adoption until several years later. Also, Apple decided not to revamp their design when the successor to the iPhone 3G was set to be launched. Instead, they – more or less – used the iPhone 3G casing, and focused mainly on internal upgrades. To showcase that the design of their new phone was the about the same as on the iPhone 3G, but the phone was still significantly faster and internally reworked, Apple named the device the iPhone 3GS – basically meaning the iPhone 3G Speed.
Next, when Apple introduced a phone featuring a new design, they also bumped up the number from 3 (as in the iPhone 3G and 3GS) to 4, with the iPhone 4. The next phone after this featured the same casing (again, more or less) as the iPhone 4, and was therefore named the iPhone 4S, as the internal changes made it an ”iPhone 4 Speed”. Are you getting it? So after this, when they changed the design of their phone again, introducing a larger screen, they bumped up the number of the phone from 4 (as in the iPhone 4 and 4S) to – you guessed it – 5, with the iPhone 5. The next flagship phone after this featured the same overall design as the iPhone 5, and was consequently named the iPhone 5S (or actually the iPhone ”5s”, as Apple changed to a lowercase ”s” for unknown reasons). This all seems pretty easy though, right? Apple launches their phone, say the iPhone X (X being an unknown number), which is followed next year by a phone that looks more or less the same, called the iPhone XS. Next year, Apple releases a phone with a new design, and bumps up the number, so the device is called the iPhone X+1 (X+1 being the next number after the unknown X number of the previous phone), and the year after that, they launch a phone with the same design as the iPhone X+1, and the phone is called the iPhone X+1S. Next year, it’s time for the iPhone X+2, then the X+2S, and so on.
In 2013, though, Apple introduced a mid-segment device, to be sold at a lower price so that Apple could avoid selling old outdated iPhones to cover the mid-segment of the market. This meant Apple didn’t have to rely on supporting as old hardware with new updates, which in turn allowed new updates to be more powerful in the future (we’re going to be seeing the first results of this with iOS 9). This mid-segment device did not feature the same design as the iPhone 5s, which it launched alongside, but was undoubtedly part of the ”5”-series – so it was named the ”iPhone 5c”. When the iPhone 6 launched in 2014, there was no iPhone 6c launched alongside this generation – because the mid-segment device (the iPhone Xc, if you will) is only updated every other year, since there isn’t as big a demand for mid-segment devices.
This is why, this year we will first of all see the successor to the iPhone 6. This will naturally retain almost the same design as its predecessor, as we’ve seen happening every other year with Apple’s flagship devices, and therefore this will be called the iPhone 6s. Last year, Apple launched the iPhone 6 in two screen variations – the 4.7” iPhone 6, and (featuring a plus-sized screen) the 5.5” iPhone Plus. Apple keeps their flagship casings around for the next year, as we’ve learned, so Apple will be launching the 4.7” iPhone 6s and the 5.5” iPhone 6s Plus this year. There will be NO iPhone 7 in 2015, as the number 7 is being saved for the next time Apple updates the design of the iPhone, which will be in 2016. This also means there will be NO removed home-button, all-front screen, or Touch-ID integrated into the screen on the iPhone this year.
On the other hand though, we might see an iPhone 6c launch this year, and this does not necessarily have to be a plastic phone like last time. The idea of the ”c”-line is rather to present a cheap alternative to the iPhone, where new technologies can be incorporated if needed, as opposed to selling old iPhones, where you can not make hardware revisions in the same way. This is not necessarily the case though, since the iPhone 5s – still being on sale, and would be the one to be replaced by an iPhone 6c this year – is still an extremely capable phone still with a lot of untapped power, from the 64-bit A7-chip and its Touch ID home-button. It is not obvious that this phone actually needs to be updated – although Apple would arguably like their mid-segment device to feature NFC, which means support for Apple Pay. Again though, keeping the NFC-less iPhone 5s around could prompt its user to buy an Apple Watch, which is NFC-capable and can make Apple Pay purchases together with an iPhone 5s. In the end, only time will tell – but you don’t have to wait to be able to stop calling the next iPhone the iPhone 7, and making yourself look uninformed when the 2015 announcement of the iPhone 6s comes.
We’re ramping up to iPhone launch season and — as expected this time of year — the web is inundated with purported leaks of components, renders and images of Apple’s next smartphones. Over the weekend a couple of new, interesting leaks surfaced purportedly confirming a couple of rumors we’ve already heard. Check out our coverage of the iPhone 6s chassis from earlier in the year.
First up is arguably the most important: A display panel which seemingly adds at least a little credence to the rumors of an iPhone with Force Touch capabilities. On the surface, these screen leaks don’t look overly different to the current iPhone’s display. Look underneath and we see a small rectangle purposefully cut out from the thin metal plate which traditionally separates the screen from the other internal components.
After dropping the iPhone from its lineup completely in February, it seems Virgin Mobile USA has had something of a change of heart. Not only is it now offering the latest two iPhone models, it’s also slashed $100 off the full retail price.
You can snag a 16GB iPhone 6 from Virgin Mobile’s online store for $549.99, a hefty discount on the usual full retail price of $649.99. Likewise, the 16GB iPhone 6 Plus is just $649 (down from $749). For those wanting an even cheaper way to get an iPhone, the 8GB white iPhone 5c is available to buy from Virgin Mobile for $299.
When his small plane depressurized above Joplin, Texas at an altitude of 9,300 feet, Ben Wilson and his pilot thankfully weren’t injured — but Wilson’s iPhone 5s and a newspaper were sucked out of the plane, falling to the ground below. Unlike the typical “dropped iPhone” news story, which ends four or five feet later with a cracked screen, Wilson’s iPhone not only survived the drop, but was able to be located in a pasture using the Find My iPhone app. expand full story
Less than two years after they each went into service, only one of the three Lightning cables pictured above is actually working properly. It’s not the big Belkin cable on the left, which is visibly pretty wrecked, or the thick, no-name 6-foot cable on the right, which looks fine on the surface but can’t properly supply power to a connected device. The one that works without problems is, amazingly, Apple’s official Lightning cable — the one that has been pilloried by numerous dissatisfied users, notably including our own Zac Hall, for coming apart after months or years of use.
These complaints aren’t without merit: even Apple-authorized Lightning cables do break, which is particularly infuriating given how expensive they tend to be. But there’s a lot of bad information about Lightning cables floating around right now, and having spent a lot of time using them and reading user complaints, I wanted to help people avoid some of their preventable failures. Taking a few precautions can save you a $10 to $20 replacement cost, as well as wasted time and stress…
Strategy Analytics has issued its latest estimates of global mobile phone shipments, and reports that Apple’s market share climbed from 8.2% in Q2 2014 to 10.9% in the same quarter this year. Apple revealed in its latest quarterly earnings that it saw iPhone sales climb 35% year-on-year to 47M units.
The research firm said that Apple’s dramatic growth in iPhone shipments contrasted strongly with an overall industry growth rate of just 2% … expand full story
We’re expecting this year’s going to be another ‘S’ upgrade year for the iPhone, and a bunch of recent leaks suggest what we’ve heard so far is on track. It’s not much, but a bunch of minor parts destined for an iPhone 6S assembly line have showed up.
We have the metal camera surround which will, once more, protrude slightly from the back of the smartphone.
Perhaps a little more interesting is the alleged new flex connecting the volume buttons, power/sleep key and camera components. In the iPhone 6 these parts were connected to the logic board using two separate flexes. One had the volume and mute switches while the other had the camera, flash and power button. In this leak, all components are connected by a single flex.
This part was photographed alongside the new power flex which houses the Lightning connector, speaker and microphone.
Nothing entirely surprising here. Apple is well-known for slightly adapting internal parts between upgrades to make them easier to assemble. This is just another example of that evolution.
Earlier this week, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell upheld his original ruling that Patriots star Tom Brady will serve a four game suspension next season over the well-known “DeflateGate” controversy. Goodell cited Brady replacing his smartphone amid the investigation in his decision to uphold the suspension.
Responding to the NFL’s ruling in a Facebook post today, Brady stated that he simply switched phones because he wanted to upgrade from a Samsung device to an iPhone 6:
Today we’re comparing Apples to Oranges. Well not really, but instead Apple’s iPhone 6 to OnePlus’s new flagship killer on the block. Question is, does the OnePlus 2 bring enough to the table in order to take on one of the most popular smartphones on the planet?
Summer for T-Mobile this year has meant announcing a series of promotions and plans dubbed #UncarrierAmped. Today, the company launched the latest, and last of these moves. This time it’s all about Apple. John Legere announced in a blog post that the company is adding Apple Music to its Music Freedom free music streaming service and is going to offer this year’s — as yet unreleased — iPhone to anyone buying an iPhone 6 over the next couple of months. expand full story
Beijing police have raided and closed down a factory which employed hundreds of workers on six production lines to make more than 41,000 counterfeit iPhones – some of which made it to the United States, reports Reuters. The total value of the fake phones was estimated at 120M Yuan ($19M). While the raid took place in May, Chinese authorities only shared details yesterday.
Police arrested nine people, including a married couple who led the operation, after a raid in May on the factory, run under the guise of a gadget maintenance shop on the northern outskirts of the Chinese capital.
The investigation was prompted by a tip-off from U.S. authorities after some of the fake phones made it to the USA … expand full story
Following up on its newest TV ad campaign, “If it’s not an iPhone,” Apple has launched a new web page dedicated to explaining what sets its smartphone apart from the competition. The page is titled “Why there’s nothing quite like iPhone,” and breaks down many key features, like iMessages, the camera, and the built-in security features.