iPhone 8 or iPhone X? What to expect from Apple's Sept 12 event

Apple sent out invitations to media for an event to be held  at the Steve Jobs Theater in Apple Park.
Apple sent out invitations to media for an event to be held at the Steve Jobs Theater in Apple Park. PHOTO: AFP

CUPERTINO - With almost clockwork precision, Apple has been holding media events every September, and this year is no exception.

Last week, Apple sent out invitations to media for an event to be held on Tuesday, 10am (Sept 12; Sept 13, 1am, Singapore time) at the Steve Jobs Theater in Apple Park, Apple's new campus.

While there are no confirmed details yet for the upcoming event, Apple typically announces new iPhones, a new iOS mobile operating system and other products during its September media events.

Tuesday's event will also be the first time that an event will be held at the new Apple Park, which has not yet been completed, giving journalists heading down a sneak peak of the new building.

Here's a look at what to expect from the event.

IPHONE 8 or IPHONE X?

This year holds special significance as it will be the 10th anniversary of the groundbreaking iPhone. And Apple is expected to unveil the latest iPhone on Tuesday that will have a dramatic new design.

One question is whether it will be called iPhone 8, or iPhone X to celebrate its 10th anniversary.

 
 

Developers who have dug into a leaked golden master version of iOS 11 claimed there will be three new handset models: the iPhone X, iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus.

The iPhone X is rumoured to be a new 5.8-inch model with an almost bezel-less Oled screen. So, there is no front home button and no Touch ID or fingerprint sensor. Instead, the iPhone X is expected to use 3D face recognition for unlocking its screen. It is supposed to be smaller than the iPhone 7 Plus despite having a larger screen.

Prices for the iPhone X are expected to start from US$1,000 (S$1,342). But analysts are expecting the iPhone X to be in short supply until early 2018.

The iPhone 8 and 8 Plus are rumoured to be 5.5-inch and 4.7-inch models respectively. They are expected to follow the same form factor as their predecessors, the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus, and use LCD screens instead of Oled screens. Both models are likely to get processor or camera upgrades too.

The iPhone 8 and 8 Plus are expected to be more readily available than the X. So, for those who cannot wait, these models might be the ones to get.

NEW APPLE WATCH

It has been a year since Apple launched the Apple Watch Series 2, introducing built-in GPS and 50m water resistance. And many analysts are expecting that Series 3 might be announced during Tuesday's event.

However, it could just be an incremental upgrade with built-in LTE added. This will allow for music streaming, making phone calls and sending messages even when the iPhone is not near the smartwatch.

APPLE TV 4K

Many video streaming services such as Amazon Prime Video and Netflix now offer 4K content, and many television sets support 4K as well. So, there are expectations for the next generation of Apple's streaming device, the Apple TV, to be able to stream 4K content.

This is further supported by an announcement during June's Apple developer conference that the Amazon Prime Video app will be available on the Apple TV sometime this year. A 4K Apple TV will make a lot of sense in this regard.

Hopefully, the new Apple TV will be able to support other TV technologies like HDR10 and Dolby Vision, found in some of the latest 4K TVs.

iMAC PRO, HOMEPOD AND MAC PRO

This is a long stretch, but Apple could give release dates for the iMac Pro desktop computer and HomePod smart speaker at Tuesday's event.

The two devices were announced during Apple's developer conference in June, and they are expected to be out by end of this year.

For the new Mac Pro desktop computer that is supposedly undergoing a major overhaul, its new design was not unveiled during Apple's developer conference. Tuesday's event could change that if the device gets any stage time.

iOS 11

If new iPhones are launched, the new iOS 11 will likely be available as well.

New features of iOS 11 expected include the Files app, which allows users to have easy access to all the files in an iPhone or iPad. Users can even keep their files in folders, and the Files app supports cloud drives such as iCloud Drive, Box and Dropbox.

Other improvements include the personal voice-assistant Siri being more natural and expressive, a new Control Centre that is more customisable, and support for augmented reality.

The Straits Times will be at the Steve Jobs Theater to bring you the latest on Apple's offerings. Readers can also watch the live stream of the event at www.apple.com/apple-events/september-2017/.