Analyst: there's a 50% chance for the Apple iPhone 7 to ditch the physical home button

Now that the new iPhones are out, some people are already looking forward to what's next in store for the iconic smartphone series. While the iPhone 6s and 6s Plus are based on the same design as the previous generation, typical for S-cycle iPhones, Apple will surely go back to the drawing board with the iPhone 7. The last time that the company introduced new iPhone designs, Apple revealed the most radical change to its smartphone series: larger - 4.7 and 5.5-inch - display sizes.

In an investor's note to his clients, Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster recently predicted some of the features that the iPhone 7 series will bring to the table. Note that these predictions are based on market analysis. There's roughly a year to go before Apple launches the iPhone 7, and everything is subject to change at this point in a product's launch.

According to Munster, the iPhone 7 might ditch the iconic physical home button, a feature that has been present on all iPhones to date. The analyst says that by perfecting the "3D Touch" pressure-sensing system, the company could integrate the home button right on the display. Munster estimates a 50-50 chance for Apple to ditch the physical home button with the iPhone 7.

This would do a lot to make the iPhone more compact and, thus, easier to handle. The current-generation iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus have screen-to-body ratios of 65.71% and 67.91% respectively, which is well below that of the average high-end smartphone. 

Although an iPhone without a physical home button would represent a major change in itself, Apple would also have to relocate the fingerprint scanner. Munster says that Apple could do what other Android manufacturers did to solve the problem, and place the fingerprint scanner on the side of the iPhone 7. 

Although this isn't mentioned in the report, we have to note that this would be the perfect timing for Apple patented fingerprint readers that can work from beyond the display. Qualcomm will roll its own ultrasonic fingerprint reader technology with the upcoming Snapdragon 820, meaning that the technology might already be out there for Apple to place the reader behind the display if it wants to.

The analyst also predicts that the iPhone 7 will finally make use of displays with sapphire crystal. Apple tried to launch the iPhone 6 with a sapphire display two years ago, but the company's partnership with GT Advanced Technologies turned out to be a major fiasco. Since then, Apple rolled out sapphire crystal displays - more durable than their glass crystal counterparts - on a smaller scale on some versions of the Apple Watch.

What do you guys think of these predictions? Would you be intrigued if the Apple iPhone 7 comes out without a physical home button?

source: Barrons via GforGames



1. bubblechaos

Posts: 114; Member since: May 04, 2015

I do feel like the home button is an iconic figure of the iphones. Taking it off will definitely add the a more futuristic approach but it will make it reassemble to the current market phones without a physical home button.

5. SamsungPhanboy

Posts: 765; Member since: Mar 31, 2015

The physical home button will stay without a doubt. You nailed it. No way in hell that Apple would get rid of its signature design. They may slim the bezels, but to take that risk of doing away with their physical button would completely be out of character for Apple.

10. j2001m

Posts: 3061; Member since: Apr 28, 2014

Hahahahahhahahahahah, you are up on Apple having no idea how to make the finger print crap under the screen they patented right? No idea at all, I.e. Not going to happen and that patent need to be dropped ASAP They just make the Apple logo the finger print scanner and copy google nexus

38. nctx77

Posts: 2540; Member since: Sep 03, 2013

It is iconic, but it's just time. They will still have the grid to instantly make it recognizable as an iPhone. The question is will the make the screen bigger or make the device smaller. I would prefer them to make the device smaller, but I do understand it may put a strain on the components.

48. zeeBomb

Posts: 2318; Member since: Aug 14, 2014

100% that its going to stay. If apple would to remove it, it wouldn't be an iPhone anymore. Jobs will ressyrect himsrlf

2. InsertUsernameHere

Posts: 430; Member since: Aug 31, 2014

I wonder if they will increase the resolutions.

6. SamsungPhanboy

Posts: 765; Member since: Mar 31, 2015

They will have to for the 7. 7 plus, let's hope.

22. stanislav

Posts: 136; Member since: Sep 22, 2014

I hope no just no need for phone

4. Ninetysix

Posts: 2964; Member since: Oct 08, 2012

Analyst: there's a 50% chance for the next Gen Android flagships to ditch the physical home button. Wait for it.

8. TheYellowFlash

Posts: 44; Member since: Oct 08, 2015

Android flagships including LG & Sony??

11. Hexa-core

Posts: 2131; Member since: Aug 11, 2015

the phycical home button was ditched by Android OEMs long ago. where have you been?

49. Tsoliades

Posts: 228; Member since: Dec 22, 2012

The Joke You

55. jroc74

Posts: 6023; Member since: Dec 30, 2010

I take it you dont know the post history of Ninetysix... Just read a few responses of his in here....then it will all make sense.

12. Ordinary

Posts: 2454; Member since: Apr 23, 2015

It would be more like: Welcome to 2010 Apple Wait for it.

14. Ninetysix

Posts: 2964; Member since: Oct 08, 2012

43. buccob

Posts: 2968; Member since: Jun 19, 2012

The funny thing will be that when Apple drops the physical button, the next PA article will read: "Best phones with On Screen Home Key" and the iPhone will be on top.... Hypocrites....

54. willard12 unregistered

I'm thinking Apple Pencil, multi-window, and power saving mode went through that copier.

60. 8ozchickenbreast unregistered

Multi window and power saving was on iPhone OG before any Android smartphone had it. Do your research. And yes, this is true. Good luck.

57. jroc74

Posts: 6023; Member since: Dec 30, 2010

You could say welcome to late 2009, early 2010: Droid 1 HTC Incredible

56. jroc74

Posts: 6023; Member since: Dec 30, 2010

I find this odd when Android phones have had them and didnt have them......since forever..... But I came in here expecting to see the copying bait tossed didnt disappoint. Thanks.

7. TheYellowFlash

Posts: 44; Member since: Oct 08, 2015

And the isheeps will call it "innovation" LOL

26. 8ozchickenbreast unregistered

How long will it take for the Android circle jerkers to realize this joke is old and stale. Come up with an innovative joke, all mighty innovative fandroids.

9. Leandronb

Posts: 86; Member since: Jun 03, 2014

there is a 50% chance of anything happen in the world. what a crap news.

13. Ordinary

Posts: 2454; Member since: Apr 23, 2015

It could work if they put force touch behind the bezels (they patented that) or on-screen buttons.

19. Iodine

Posts: 1480; Member since: Jun 19, 2014

I say that there is 50% chance that there is a daytime right now. But honestly iPhone 7 design is already long finished and negotions for producing it had already begun - there needs to be like a crapload of those sexy 6,4 mm beasts ready for 2016 holiday season. No guestimate is going to influence that there is a Home button.

23. ThePython

Posts: 902; Member since: May 08, 2013

If you're an analyst and you predict the iPhone will lose the home button, you really suck at your job.

24. No_Sammy_No_Gimmicks

Posts: 147; Member since: Jun 10, 2015

I personally also think the home button will go. But I differ with the writers view that Apple will make the next iPhone more compact simply because they will be forced to reduce battery capacity especially since the phone will be thinner. I think they will bump the screen sizes to take advantage of the available space for better screen to body ration. iPhone 7 will have (125mm/5", 2001x 1125 resolution) screen size and the iPhone 7+ (145mm/5.7" 2208x1242 resolution).

25. wando77

Posts: 1168; Member since: Aug 23, 2012

There's a 100% chance the iphone 7 will have 2013 specs

27. 8ozchickenbreast unregistered

2013 specs that will outperform our 2017 Android devices. Ouch.

35. Ordinary

Posts: 2454; Member since: Apr 23, 2015

G4 vs 6s P.S. Check the battery drop on iPhone 6s. G4 vs 6s+ Nexus 6 vs 6s I am gonna act like those android phones dont have QHD display and worse SoC just to throw you a bone.

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