With a relatively safe launch year for Apple and its new iPhone 11 series, those faithful to the brand have done their best to sleuth out what’s coming next for the iconic smartphone. While the iPhone 11 and 11 Pro offered a significant upgrade as far as cameras and aesthetics go (the triple-camera look is odd, to be sure), these designs weren’t as drastically different as many might have hoped for. But according to a series of new leaks, it looks like Apple is planning to ditch the kid gloves for its 2020 flagship iPhone that may very well blow us all away.
According to a render of leaked features found online, PhoneArena have created a mockup of what they believe to be the next iPhone, and it looks markedly different from the last series. It even adds another camera to the already crowded tri-camera stop, meaning the top right corner of your phone is about to look a little wild.
Notably, Apple may be going back to basics, so to speak, with the iPhone 12, as it could be adopting a similar shell to the iPhone 4. iPhones have only gotten progressively thinner over the years, so this would be a big change for the maker in terms of aesthetics and functionality. It would also mean that the phone’s infamous notch would shrink a bit smaller. If you remember how thick the original iPhone was, it’s nearly unrecognizable now with how slate-thin the new phones have become. A new look like this would be an intriguing direction for Apple.
As far as that fourth camera goes, it would likely include long-range 3D capabilities, according to Bloomberg. This would enable the phone to better map its surroundings from up to 15 feet away. One application for the additional camera would be to better augmented reality apps and features, such as Snapchat overlays that add fun characters to your photos and let you change the way your face looks.
It could accomplish this with a Time-of-Flight (ToF) camera, which is able to measure depth in a much more accurate manner than a regular camera. It would likely be smaller than the other cameras on the phone, however.
However, some of the most impressive changes coming to the phone are based internally. Notably, Apple reportedly is looking to begin adding 5G support for every model, which means buyers wouldn’t have to choose the more expensive iterations of the phones or opt for alternative makers to adopt new 5G functionality when their carrier offers it.
There’s also the storied return of Touch ID (via PhoneArena), which has been a big ask from fans since Apple ditched it in favor of Face ID. It’s not clear whether Face ID would still be an option in addition to Touch ID or not, but it would be great to have a secondary option to confirm purchases and unlock your phone with, especially if the phone utilized an embedded fingerprint sensor.
Apple may also finally be making the hotly-anticipated switch from Lightning to USB-C, which would help make its ecosystem of products a lot more uniform. Current MacBook Pro models as well as the iPad Pro utilize USB-C charging cables, so being able to share cables between products would certainly be a huge boon.
Of course, with all of these new augments, the next iPhone (iPhone 12, presumably) will likely be more expensive to compensate for all of the new additions. It isn’t clear just yet whether any of these intriguing leaks will come to light, as Apple has yet to formally speak on any of them, but the rumor and leak machines always start up long before we ever hear about any formal redesigns or plan.
For this crop of leaks, however, these changes seem just believable enough to happen. And if the do, we could end up seeing a much different picture of the popular smartphone around this time next year.