iPhone 6s: Don't Expect Big Changes - InformationWeek
IoT
IoT
IT Life
Commentary
6/28/2015
11:05 AM
Eric Zeman
Eric Zeman
Commentary
0%
100%

iPhone 6s: Don't Expect Big Changes

The next iPhone, likely to be called the iPhone 6s, will look like the iPhone 6, but should have one unique feature to boost its appeal.

10 iPhone, Android Apps To Keep You Healthy
10 iPhone, Android Apps To Keep You Healthy
(Click image for larger view and slideshow.)

Apple's next iPhone -- likely to be called the iPhone 6s -- won't differ all that much from the current model. That's what conventional wisdom suggests, especially when one considers Apple's pattern of behavior over the last few years.

If the next iPhone will mirror the last one, what's to set it apart? Apple always comes up with something.

The original 2007 iPhone was the only iPhone to stand on its own. Apple followed it with pairs of new designs: the iPhone 3G and 3GS, the iPhone 4 and 4S, and the iPhone 5 and 5s (and 5c, to a lesser extent). Apple may have recycled the chassis design in each of these pairs, but it made at least a few under-the-hood changes to give the second generation of each chassis its own appeal.

For example, the iPhone 3GS improved the camera from 2 megapixels to 3 megapixels, boosted storage from 16 GB to 32 GB, and doubled HSPA speeds compared to the iPhone 3G. Similarly, the iPhone 4s improved the camera from 5 megapixels to 8 megapixels, updated the processor, doubled the available storage, and increased mobile data speeds compared to the iPhone 4.

(Image: Ellica_S/iStockphoto)

(Image: Ellica_S/iStockphoto)

Last, the iPhone 5s was the first to add a fingerprint reader. The fingerprint home button was the defining characteristic of the iPhone 5s compared to the iPhone 5, though the 5s also updated the processor, wireless modem, and other specs.

The iPhone 6 (and 6 Plus) are due for upgrades this fall, but expect them to see mostly under-the-hood changes as they transform into the iPhone 6s and 6s Plus.

The big one will likely be the camera.

The iPhone 4s, 5, 5s, and 6 have all had 8-megapixel cameras. Signs suggest Apple will improve the resolution to at least 12 megapixels. Many competing smartphones have camera sensors in the 16- to 21-megapixel range. Megapixels aren't everything, and Apple's 8-megapixel sensor beats many that capture twice as many pixels, but it's time for Apple to move up a notch.

The other big addition will be Force Touch.

[Will Apple go small with the next iPhone? Most likely not. ]

Apple debuted Force Touch on the Apple Watch and then added it to its most recent laptop. Force Touch and its associated SDK allow developers to add a whole new range of pressure-sensitive features to their apps. This will undoubtedly be a really interesting addition to the iPhone.

Other potential improvements include the A9 processor, 2 GB of RAM, and an even better version of the Touch ID sensor. It's also remotely possible Apple will use its recently patented technology to streamline the design of the iPhone 6s.

Apple has announced each of the last several iPhones in early September. That gives us about two and a half months to wait.

Eric is a freelance writer for InformationWeek specializing in mobile technologies. View Full Bio
We welcome your comments on this topic on our social media channels, or [contact us directly] with questions about the site.
Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Li Tan
50%
50%
Li Tan,
User Rank: Ninja
7/6/2015 | 6:51:16 AM
Re: Meh
Will iPhone7 a breakthrough? So far I did not see iPhone6S a major breakthrough compared to iPhone6. I will not pay extra money for it.
asksqn
50%
50%
asksqn,
User Rank: Ninja
6/29/2015 | 7:33:02 PM
Meh
Not enough of "new" or "improved" in this model to justify the pricetag particularly when you can get identical or better on an Android phone. 
vnewman2
50%
50%
vnewman2,
User Rank: Ninja
6/29/2015 | 3:25:16 PM
Re: Force Touch
I do a ton of things one-handed (I have a two year-old) and I am constantly knocking myself out of what I am trying to do because of the sensitivity of the iPhone touch screen.  So I am hoping Force Touch will be able to detect differences in when I am trying to scroll as opposed to click a link/resize the screen as opposed to flipping the page...etc.
progman2000
50%
50%
progman2000,
User Rank: Ninja
6/29/2015 | 6:49:38 AM
Re: Force Touch
@Susan - yeah I guess I hadn't thought of that. I just assumed anyone who needed a camera for work actually had a 'real' camera, but I supposed there are a lot of people who use them like you do, and I'm sure Apple would love to increase their presence in work applications.
Susan Fourtané
50%
50%
Susan Fourtané,
User Rank: Author
6/29/2015 | 6:24:41 AM
Re: Force Touch
Program2000, ;Let's not forget that not all the people take photos with their iPhones just to upload them to Facebook, or Twitter. Many of us use the iPhone and iPad as work tools. I use my iPhone 6 Plus to tale all the pictures I use in my articles, I shoot video and edit on my iPad Air 2, or my Mac depending on where I am working. I record interviews and presentations. So, I would say that a camera upgrade to 12mb is something to consider for those of us who use the camera for work. The same with the upgrades of the iPad, which another great work tool for some of us. -Susan
progman2000
50%
50%
progman2000,
User Rank: Ninja
6/28/2015 | 8:59:32 PM
Re: Force Touch
Is an upgrade from an 8mb camera to a 12mb camera really compelling enough to convince people to upgrade? Most people that take a camera phone pic are uploading it to Facebook or Twitter, I think 8mb is fine for that.
yalanand
50%
50%
yalanand,
User Rank: Ninja
6/28/2015 | 3:29:17 PM
Re: Force Touch
The haptic electomagnetic touch response system? It may be a good technology but nothing to be overhyped for. The basic phone stays the same and Apple is doing good things to improve it. 
yalanand
50%
50%
yalanand,
User Rank: Ninja
6/28/2015 | 3:26:08 PM
Re: Force Touch
iPhone cameras are truly a class apart. Indoors or outdoors, the only thing that comes close (or even surpasses) the iPhone camera is the Lumia camera. Microsoft (or rather Nokia) is a tough competitor to beat atleast in the photography division.
Susan Fourtané
0%
100%
Susan Fourtané,
User Rank: Author
6/28/2015 | 2:01:58 PM
Force Touch
Force Touch is a really nice feature that can add a lot to the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus. -Susan
2018 State of the Cloud
2018 State of the Cloud
Cloud adoption is growing, but how are organizations taking advantage of it? Interop ITX and InformationWeek surveyed technology decision-makers to find out, read this report to discover what they had to say!
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
The Next Generation of IT Support
The workforce is changing as businesses become global and technology erodes geographical and physical barriers.IT organizations are critical to enabling this transition and can utilize next-generation tools and strategies to provide world-class support regardless of location, platform or device
Video
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.
Flash Poll