In a press release on Tuesday, market intelligence provider TrendForce predicted that the new iPhones in 2018 would feature several significant upgrades, including a better Face ID and an updated design with an improved screen-to-body ratio. The company also expects Apple to “increase the memory content and embed AMOLED display in two of its models.”
Furthermore, TrendForce believes that Apple will launch a second generation iPhone SE for the mid-range audience. This isn’t the first time we’ve heard these claims, and in fact, it seems that many analysts are on the same page about Apple’s output for the coming year, even with the next iPhone launch so far away.
The iPhone predictions were just one small part of the press release, with much of the rest of it focusing on global smartphone production and Chinese smartphone brands. TrendForce expects growth of global production to slow to 5% as smartphone components become increasingly expensive, and for non-Chinese vendors to reverse a decline that began in 2015 as the iPhone X and other innovative phones have a major impact on the market:
TrendForce points out that the growth of global smartphone production in 2017 was mainly driven by Chinese telecommunication operators’ subsidies to users in 4G monthly fees, together with Chinese brands’ active deployment in emerging markets. In 2018, however, smartphone growth trend is coming to a plateau period despite of ambitious performances of Chinese brands, and the industry will not be able to deliver the same impressive results as in the past years, when the market always had a double-digit growth. In comparison, influenced by innovative applications in iPhone X and its future flagship models, non-Chinese vendors are expected to reverse the decline since 2015 and to record a slight growth of 3%.
TrendForce also expects Samsung to struggle, Chinese brands to make a dent overseas and all-screen, dual-camera phones to dominate the market in 2018. Plus, under-display fingerprint sensors could enter production in the second half of the year, leading to yet another important innovation that smartphone owners have been waiting for.