Yes, the iPhone 6s and 6s Plus are on the way [Updated]

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It’s the end of August and this means just two things; kids will be going back to school and Apple will be releasing new iPhones.

The annual release cycle of Apple products have become quite easy to read if you know where to look for the patterns. It all happens when blogs start reporting that some analysts says that a mysterious key feature will be absent from this generation. Then comes the word that manufacturing has been delayed. It’s always delayed, every time, which is odd because no one knows the actual deadlines. After this comes the leaks of the casing and sometimes the buttons.

All of this starts to happen after the WWDC event where the new version of iOS is announced. It only ends in the first weeks of September. As this time rolls round, it’s clear that Apple will announce their event this week (probably).

With all that to mind, we can start to look at what will be released. The iPhones have come in a ‘tick tock’ pattern and will continue too this year. The tick is the major re-design, the tock is the optimisation of the re-design.

That means that this year, we’ll be getting the 6s and the 6s Plus. These new phones will look almost identical to the current handsets. When it comes to the visual differences in the phones of the past, the new s variants will have only the smallest changes. The new iPhones will be made of the same Aluminium 7000 alloy that the Apple Watch is made from. That should get rid of the that pesky ‘bendgate’. The only other change that I can foresee for the outside will be the possibility of the removal of the lens bulge. That’s a long shot, but it is possible. So are new colour options, so keep your eyes out for those.

The key changes for any s variant come inside the device. This year will be no exception. The headline changes are usually three-fold; camera, chipset and software.

There will be a new camera in the devices and they will bring with them a new feature that no other iPhone can deliver. Most likely, this will be even slower slow motion, 4K video and high resolution stills. The stills will probably up to about 12Mp as its been a while coming. The 4K video would go nicely with the retina screens on all the other Apple product ranges.

The chipset, or as its otherwise known, the processor and graphics card. These often see significant upgrades in the s version. The 5s for instance brought 64bit processing and the 4s was a huge speed upgrade for gaming. When it comes to the chipset, no one legitimately knows outside of Apple what is coming. Keep in mind though, that if we get 4K video, it makes sense to also get a big speed increase for editing and a good chance of a dedicated hardware encoder, possibly tied in to the graphics card.

The last one will be software based. Siri was and to an extent, the Touch ID and its use from the 5s onwards has been too. There will always be something that the s model can do that requires some small bit of hardware to achieve something in the software that’s great. Included in this list would be the m7 processor in the 5s driving the health app and the 3GS had a camera upgrade that meant someone could edit video. All references this year point to this being the same Force Touch technology that is in the Apple Watch.

There we have it, the 6s and 6s plus will have substantial upgrades to the camera, chipset and software. They will also be made of a new Aluminium but with the same design with only minor design tweaks.

One more thing, there’s a good chance that there will be another handset on the same kind of level as the 5c. The three handset platform has worked well for Apple, as I’ve seen more people here in the uk with 5c handsets as I ever did with 5 and 5s versions. For Apple to bring out a replacement would make a lot of sense from a market perspective. Given that they are still manufacturing 4″ displays and have a really good plastic for it. A 6c, with a slightly slimmer frame, last years internals and with Touch ID to enable Apple Pay to a whole new audience would make sense. I’d expect to see that this September too.

Let’s see what the next few weeks bring and remember, there’s always a good chance of an Apple style surprise.

[Update] Apple have announced their iPhone event for Wednesday the 9th of September. And as such have ruined my prediction by a day! 




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