Full details of the iPhone 7 aren’t expected to be revealed until early this Fall, but thanks to the Apple rumor mill we may already know two of the device’s biggest features, and they could be more major than expected.
Apple will supposedly make its next iPhone both waterproof and dustproof, according to supply chain sources in China that also indicate the home button could get its biggest upgrade since the addition of Touch ID.
The third test phase of the iPhone 7 was just recently completed, reports Digitimes, which claims the device will also have a new touch-sensitive home button that sits flush with the rest of the screen. Details on how the new home button will work aren’t clear, but it sounds similar to the captive buttons on Android devices that don’t move when you press them.
Digitimes track record when it comes to Apple rumors is quite mixed, however, the waterproof/dustproof iPhone rumor does linup with a report from FastCo earlier this year that Apple plans to add waterproofing when it ditches the 3.5mm headphone jack. It’s also been rumored for nearly a year that Apple would like to ditch the homebutton completely by adding a fingerprint scanner behind the iPhone’s display.
The iPhone’s home button has long been one of the most common repair problems for Apple. The company could make it more durable by using a LiquidMetal home button that measures pressure based on physical changes to the alloy as it is deformed slightly with each press. This would give the iPhone fewer moving parts and hopefully prevent the problem of malfunctioning home buttons.
Even though the design of the iPhone 7 isn’t expected to vary much from the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6s, Apple’s huge list of new features could still make it a big draw. Other features Apple is rumored to be adding include a new Smart Connecter, dual lens camera, bigger battery, wireless charging, no headphone jack, and a cleaner rear shell design with minimal antenna lines.