Apple iPhone XI models rumored to feature new Underwater Mode and more

Apple iPhone XI models rumored to feature new Underwater Mode and more
Last month, respected analyst Ming-Chi Kuo told TF International clients what he expects from Apple for the 2019 iPhone models that will most likely be unveiled in September. And just so you understand how fast time flies, that is only six months away. Kuo says we should expect three different models with the same sized screens. According to the analyst that means we should see Apple unveil a 5.8-inch Apple iPhone XI, a 6.4-inch iPhone XI Max and a 6.1-inch iPhone XR (2019).

There have been conflicting reports whether all three models will feature an OLED display, but Kuo says to expect Apple to equip the two premium models with OLED panels while once again outfitting its "more affordable" model with an LCD display. The analyst says not to expect a switch to USB-C just yet, and both the iPhone XI and iPhone XI Max will have a triple camera setup thanks to the addition of a Time of Flight (ToF) camera. This uses infrared light and technology that times how long the light takes to bounce off a subject and return to the phone, allowing for a more accurate depth reading from the rear cameras. This will also allow Apple to offer more AR features for iPhone users.

Now it appears that the 2019 iPhones are going to have some other new capabilities as well. In the middle of last month, XDA's Max Weinbach sent out a tweet with some rumors related to this year's iOS powered handsets. Perhaps everyone was too caught up in Samsung's Unpacked event to notice the tweet, which was just five days away at the time. According to Weinbach's source, the new iPhones will feature a patented Underwater Mode that will allow the handsets to be used, well, underwater. In other words, the screen will be able to recognize a touch input even when the screen is completely submerged. This will allow users to employ their iPhones in the rain without getting ticked off that the screen is not recognizing their taps.

No foldable Apple iPhone or 5G model is expected until next year


In addition, Apple is expected to upgrade the Haptic Engine on its upcoming models. This is the technology Apple uses to create a tactile feedback, like a vibration, when you long press on the iPhone screen. Apple will reportedly divide the 2019 iPhone screens into nine regions. When a virtual button is pressed in a specific area of the screen, say the upper left corner, the user will feel a vibration coming from that area of the display.

The new iPhones will no doubt launch with iOS 13 installed. We've already passed along the rumor that Apple will eliminate the annoying volume heads-up display (HUD) with the next major iOS build. For example, when raising or lowering the volume of the ringer, iPhone users see a box that is smack dab in the center of the screen with the illustration of a bell and lines that track the setting. And Dark Mode, which has all iPhone users excited, will probably debut in iOS 13.1, according to Weinbach. This gives those with an iPhone the ability to switch viewing a white background and black text to seeing a black background with white text. This is useful at night when a white background can act like a flashlight and annoy you and others in a darkened room.

We don't expect Apple to join Samsung, Huawei, TCL, Oppo, Motorola and any other phone manufacturer producing a folding handset this year. That doesn't mean that Apple is staying out of the fray, only that it is expected to be among the last of the major phone manufacturers to offer a foldable phone. Apple is also expected to wait until 2020 to introduce an iPhone that supports 5G connectivity.

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26 Comments

1. notmyresident

Posts: 12; Member since: Feb 12, 2017

Samsung phones can already be operated while the screen is wet.

2. Iodine

Posts: 1495; Member since: Jun 19, 2014

Is that an iPhone ?

4. pimpin83z

Posts: 593; Member since: Feb 08, 2019

No, but it's a feature that the iPhone is apparently lacking.

10. midan

Posts: 3019; Member since: Oct 09, 2017

Why you think that?

29. sgodsell

Posts: 7456; Member since: Mar 16, 2013

With a time of flight camera in the front, like the one LG has in their new G8, users can make hand or finger gestures to control the operation of the phone, or camera. So no need to touch the phone at all. That would be the better method. Also Sony smartphones have been able to use their cameras under water for many years.

9. User123456789

Posts: 1020; Member since: Feb 22, 2019

Most phones with ip67/68 can. Mine from 2015 can do it

15. Plutonium239

Posts: 1232; Member since: Mar 17, 2015

I have issues using my galaxy s8+ when the screen gets wet.

21. eausa

Posts: 86; Member since: Feb 28, 2019

Yeah, had this feature since the S5 like 5-6 years ago lol

3. shaineql

Posts: 522; Member since: Apr 28, 2014

No new "innovation" untill 2020 , lul

6. pimpin83z

Posts: 593; Member since: Feb 08, 2019

"...will feature a patented Underwater Mode that will allow the handsets to be used, well, underwater. In other words, the screen will be able to recognize a touch input even when the screen is completely submerged." Man.....! I thought this was referring to those half under water pics.

7. alligator

Posts: 104; Member since: Jan 09, 2016

You should be very stupid to use a phone regularly under water. In general, the phones have protection but this doesn't mean that you need to do this every day. This is some kind of counter measure if you drop it in the pool accidentially. No need to mention that the warranty doesn't cover this type of damage (already checked with one iPhone X).

8. skips

Posts: 486; Member since: Oct 04, 2015

noone's planning to use it underwater REGULARLY. it's just a feature that would be nice to have when the situation comes up (such as ''hm i want to take underwater pictures on a whim wonder how that sh*t looks like'', or '' oi lets get artsy farsty'') , as rare as that might be.

26. mootu

Posts: 1530; Member since: Mar 16, 2017

A friend of mine has been using his S8 to take photos inside his marine reef aquarium for the last 2 years with no problem at all.

11. burkett375

Posts: 51; Member since: Dec 19, 2017

I bet they copy Sony and do an unboxing by a guy in scuba gear... ...From 5 years ago haha

12. wickedwilly

Posts: 727; Member since: Sep 19, 2018

I can clearly remember when iPhone fans use to call waterproofing on phones a gimmick, until of course when Apple copied and followed Android phones. Those same people will swoon over whatever level of waterproofing Apple add to the 11, if it happens and somehow believe it is original.

16. chris2k5

Posts: 289; Member since: Nov 17, 2012

I also recalled Samsung fanboys saying glass backed phones were a horrible concept and that plastic backs were the best way to make a phone. Eye rolls.

18. Vancetastic

Posts: 1614; Member since: May 17, 2017

I still think glass-backed phones are dumb. Give me break resistant plastic any day.

19. Settings

Posts: 2943; Member since: Jul 02, 2014

And sealed phones vs replaceable batteries. And while on memory bliss, lets not forget the Note 7.

20. sissy246

Posts: 7124; Member since: Mar 04, 2015

This Samsung fan would love to go back to a good plastic back.

13. Cat97

Posts: 1936; Member since: Mar 02, 2017

A semi-useless feature that no one asked for.

28. ebilcake

Posts: 1231; Member since: Jul 16, 2016

It's a stupid feature, simply because they're water resistant and not water proof.

14. dmomintz

Posts: 68; Member since: Jan 21, 2016

Cool, my old S6 Active had that feature 3 years ago... A very useful inclusion for people that use their phones for more adventurous purposes.

17. odachek

Posts: 127; Member since: Sep 01, 2012

Cool! That means I can play games underwater for an hour without problem. Oh wait! Can I do that?

22. abhicool

Posts: 49; Member since: Sep 25, 2018

Apple should also introduce OXYGEN MODE with under water mode.

27. ebilcake

Posts: 1231; Member since: Jul 16, 2016

Didn't Samsung have this on the Galaxy S5? .... Another world first for Apple.

32. JCASS889

Posts: 568; Member since: May 18, 2018

Don't you know? Anything Apple makes is a world first

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