Apple’s new iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus aren’t expected to be released until next Friday, September 16th. In fact, they haven’t even been announced yet at this point. But that apparently hasn’t stopped one site from managing to get its hands on a pre-release version of Apple’s next-generation iPhone 7. The blog posted an early hands-on iPhone 7 preview on Tuesday that included a number of new and unconfirmed details about Apple’s upcoming ninth-generation smartphones, and now it’s time to take a closer look at the most interesting tidbits found in the preview.
Before we dive too deep into Tinhte’s hands-on preview, let’s pause for a moment to recap exactly what we’re looking at here. This Vietnamese blog claims to have gotten its hands on an actual iPhone 7 ahead of release, but it didn’t provide any photos or videos alongside its in-depth preview in order to protect its source.
While there’s no hard evidence to prove that the site managed to secure an actual prerelease iPhone 7, it has a solid track record and has managed to gain access to unreleased Apple devices in the past. With that out of the way, let’s take a look at the most important takeaways from the site’s supposed early look at Apple’s new iPhone 7.
No place like home
The rumor mill has gone back and forth quite a bit on the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus where the phones’ home button is concerned. Some reports have suggested that the new phones will feature a button just like the one on the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus, while others have stated that a new capacitive home button will replace the physical button on Apple’s new iPhones. According to this big preview, the latter is indeed the case.
The blog says that Apple’s new iPhone features a completely redesigned home button that isn’t actually a physical button that can be depressed. Instead, it’s a capacitive button that has 3D Touch support and haptic feedback to simulate the sensation of a button press.
Why the change? Apart from the cool factor, the prevailing theory is that this is a prelude to next year’s major iPhone redesign, which will do away with the home button completely and include a Touch ID fingerprint scanner embedded beneath the display. Ditching the physical home button also helps pave the way for our next big takeaway…
Improved water resistance
Apple’s current iPhones can survive a small splash or two, but a dunk in the sink or toilet spells trouble. By removing the headphone jack, ditching the physical home button and making other key changes, Apple’s new iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus will reportedly feature IPX7 dust and water resistance.
About those new cameras…
We know Apple’s new iPhone 7 has an improved camera, and we know the iPhone 7 Plus will have an even better camera with a dual-lens setup. What we didn’t know until now, if this preview is legitimate, is that the new cameras will be able to shoot 4K ultra HD video at 60 fps. That’s a whole lot of frames per second, and it might have contributed to Apple’s rumored decision to double the amount of internal storage on each new iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus model.
More on the new cameras
Apart from the bigger lens on the iPhone 7 and the dual lens on the iPhone 7 Plus, the blog says that Apple’s new iPhones also feature an updated LED cluster for the rear flash that appears to include four LEDs instead of two, as seen on the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6s lineup.
The site seems a bit unclear on this one though, and says the flash might actually still only include two bulbs but with a new reflector pattern that makes it seem like four. In either case, we can likely look forward to better low-light performance thanks both to new optics and a redesigned flash.
Back in black
Apple moved away from black when it launched the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus in 2014, but it looks like the company is ditching Space Gray on this year’s new iPhone 7 and going back to black. Tinhte’s preview mentions one new black color but a pair of recent reports said Apple actually has two new colors lined up for this year’s new iPhones.
The bad news is that the report says Apple’s new black iPhone picks up fingerprints very easily.