Apple will most likely unveil the iPhone 8, iPhone 7s Plus and iPhone 7s during a big press conference in early September, but we’ll probably see the phones much earlier than that this year — at least, in an unofficial capacity. That’s because the iPhone maker is already sourcing components and placing orders for the next-gen iPhone, and it’s all happening a lot earlier than expected.
This is the second time in a matter of days that we’ve heard that iPhone 8 manufacturing might kick off sooner than expected. Digitimes says that supply chain sources have already confirmed that Apple will start receiving parts for the 2017 iPhones toward the end of the first quarter this year.
The earlier these iPhone 8 and iPhone 7s parts start shipping, the faster we’ll see the devices and their new components. Why? Well, it’s likely that we’ll get plenty of image leaks showing the devices and internal parts after they hit production, just like we’ve seen every other year. The sooner parts start shipping, the sooner we’ll see them leak.
Taiwan-based suppliers told the site that companies will start working on OLED panel bonding for the iPhone 8 around the end of the first quarter, and that Apple has already begun ordering OLED panels from Samsung Display.
Apple is apparently also placing orders for chips, and has set “more stringent” inspection requirements for processors, components, modules, and mechanical parts. It sounds like Apple is doubling-down on quality assurance, and that’s probably a good thing considering Samsung’s Galaxy Note 7 debacle is still fresh on everyone’s minds.
The report also notes that the iPhone 8 will feature wireless charging and iris scanning technology, according to unnamed sources. Apple suppliers are said to be “generally optimistic” about the iPhone 8’s popularity. Some analysts expect the iPhone 8 to fuel a super-cycle this year, with sales seen benefiting not only Apple but also its complex network of suppliers.