The next iPhone: what can we even add to phones anymore? Have they reached their peak

Soulweaponry

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Mar 13, 2010
394
1
Now you have fingerprint sensors and barometers and better cameras and nfc and bigger hd screens and...what the hell else can we even add besides better processors and cameras?

Back in the day (2007-2011ish) you would impatiently wait a new phone release. "Oh I can't wait til we get THAT feature". Everyone had their little wish list of things they wanted and year after year, it keeps getting checked off. Now I don't even know what I want anymore. My new iPhone 6 is just about as close to perfection as I can hope for in 2014 (barring software issues. I'm looking at you 8.0.1!) and all I want in new iPads is more ram and Touch ID, so I wonder where that's going too. what can we even look forward to anymore?
 

TJ82

macrumors 6502a
Mar 8, 2012
903
408
Still not waterproof (Samsung lead the way here).

Gaming is still awkward (touchscreen gaming can't compete with D pads).

Still waiting for a phone battery that can last for two days, or some sort of tech where the phone can recover some charge with movement.

Lightweight. 6+ under 100 grams would be immense from a hiker's POV.

Projector.
 
Last edited:

terraphantm

macrumors 68040
Jun 27, 2009
3,741
557
Pennsylvania
I think it's going to be pretty incremental here on out, maybe with a new gimmick (Siri, Touch ID, :apple:Pay) every now and then. The S in 6S will probably be for Sapphire, and with iPhone 7 they might finally fix the bezels. After that, who knows.
 

iPhone7ate9

macrumors 6502a
Jun 22, 2014
720
0
Now you have fingerprint sensors and barometers and better cameras and nfc and bigger hd screens and...what the hell else can we even add besides better processors and cameras?

Back in the day (2007-2011ish) you would impatiently wait a new phone release. "Oh I can't wait til we get THAT feature". Everyone had their little wish list of things they wanted and year after year, it keeps getting checked off. Now I don't even know what I want anymore. My new iPhone 6 is just about as close to perfection as I can hope for in 2014 (barring software issues. I'm looking at you 8.0.1!) and all I want in new iPads is more ram and Touch ID, so I wonder where that's going too. what can we even look forward to anymore?
- More ram
- A good camera for once
 

inselstudent

macrumors 6502a
Jul 27, 2012
617
4
Still not waterproof (Samsung lead the way
Seeing Samsung's way of implementing the waterproof feature (I know, it's simply the "industrial standard" at this time), I'm not wondering why Apple wouldn't ever let that loose to their customers. I mean waterproof watches are great as it doesn't hamper with their functionality at all, but all those rubber plugs to seal all ports, I mean, seriously?

I agree with you about points like battery life and weight though :)
 

*~Kim~*

macrumors 6502a
May 6, 2013
721
136
UK
This is why I think they should've introduced the 4.7 model now and held back on the 5.5.

More colour options? I don't think it was the colours that people were objecting to in the 5c, but the lack of a storage option above 32GB, the price of last year's tech and the whole plastic thing.
 

Alchematron

macrumors 65816
Jan 22, 2007
1,012
24
Maui Hawaii
Notification Light
2 GB Ram
Sapphire Glass
Enhanced Speakers
150 Lb Bend Test
Less Bezel
Less Tall
Water Proof

S model bring it on home!
 

Soulweaponry

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Mar 13, 2010
394
1
Notification Light


S model bring it on home!
Oh my god I didn't realize how much I missed this until you posted. Would be cool if the front had a little circular light around the Touch ID that swirls in certain colors and patterns depending on the notification. And for the back, make the apple glow. Oh yes. Make it glow! I don't care if the phone is slightly thicker.
 

barkmonster

macrumors 68020
Dec 3, 2001
2,124
12
Lancashire
Notification Light
2 GB Ram
Sapphire Glass
Enhanced Speakers
150 Lb Bend Test
Less Bezel
Less Tall
Water Proof

S model bring it on home!
I agree and make it out of liquid metal instead of aluminium so there's no bendgate with the next one. (Not that phablets of any OS/brand aren't clown phones anyway). They filed patents for it a couple of years ago and from all reports, it's like the real-life Adamantium.
 

Deeds500

macrumors 6502
Aug 22, 2014
313
490
"Everything that can be invented has been invented".

Supposedley said by Charles Holland Duell, the former commissioner of the United States Patent and Trademark Office, circa 1899.
 

Soulweaponry

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Mar 13, 2010
394
1
"Everything that can be invented has been invented".

Supposedley said by Charles Holland Duell, the former commissioner of the United States Patent and Trademark Office, circa 1899.
Good quote and definitely a sign of the times and the lack of progress people saw. When I made this post it wasn't really like "there's nothing that can be added to the phone. We are done!" More like "I don't have the foresight to see what we could possibly expect in the next 5 years". Cause I dont. Before 2007, I couldn't have envisioned the iPhone. Before a couple years ago, I didn't think about fingerprint sensors being in phones to not only securely unlock your phones, but to make payments in everyday life.

What can we expect next? I ask this question and the answers we've seen so far are just like mine: 1-2 year small predictions like wireless charging (already a thing in other phones) and a liquid metal phone. But what will we see that will be the next Siri? Siri surprised everybody
 

Deeds500

macrumors 6502
Aug 22, 2014
313
490
Good quote and definitely a sign of the times and the lack of progress people saw. When I made this post it wasn't really like "there's nothing that can be added to the phone. We are done!" More like "I don't have the foresight to see what we could possibly expect in the next 5 years". Cause I dont. Before 2007, I couldn't have envisioned the iPhone. Before a couple years ago, I didn't think about fingerprint sensors being in phones to not only securely unlock your phones, but to make payments in everyday life.

What can we expect next? I ask this question and the answers we've seen so far are just like mine: 1-2 year small predictions like wireless charging (already a thing in other phones) and a liquid metal phone. But what will we see that will be the next Siri? Siri surprised everybody
I think with your question, you got to split your answer into two:

1) Hardware
2) Software.

Hardware

Apple will definately keep improving the battery life and the chip. They will eventually make the iphone water resistant and someday they may even make the screen out of sapphire. We may also get the glowy thing for notifications. Eventually, way down the track, we may even have built in tvs and AM/FM radios in the iphone. Someday everyone who owns an iphone or ipad may be able to watch free to air tv on their ios device, no different to watching it on a television. Just choose your channel and away you go. And what about solar powered and/or wireless charging?

Software

IMO the real progress of the iphone will come via the software. And this is where I think the Plus will have advantages over the non plus. More screen real estate equals more options to do stuff with the software. Apple could make it equally so for the non plus, but the lesser size may make it less practical. I have no doubt in my mind that the Plus will sooner rather than later be able to peform real multitasking, ala the Note, have two apps running on the screen at the same time. This has already been rumoured for a not too distant ipad model. So why not the iphone Plus? Also, the iphone Plus may eventually become akin to desktop computer complete with file manager, windows capabilities, etc. But like the tv and radio, that would be years off.
 

maflynn

Moderator
Staff member
May 3, 2009
66,678
33,543
Boston
I think we're reaching the point in product maturity (not just iPhones but all smart phones) where the improvements are going to be smaller in magnitude.

Just think about it, what else can be added that hasn't been yet?

I think the smart phone has entered the mature product cycle and less new gee whizz type stuff will be added.
 

GrumpyMom

macrumors G3
Sep 11, 2014
8,690
12,408
Some form of digital drivers license so I don't need to carry that in my wallet anymore.

Some way to replace all those stupid store savings club cards easily.

A system of readers that act as locks for our cars and houses and a chip inside the iPhone that acts as a key. So I don't have to carry keys anymore.

Problem with all of that is if you lose your phone you sort of lose everything

Interface for people who have lost their hands or use of their hands.

Tactile feedback on the screen enabling full use by the blind for apps that can turn the screen into something they can interact with to use audiobooks or a sonar type of personal nav system or other apps that would be meaningful to someone without sight.

Motion detection sensor that can activate the camera so I can set up the iPhone at night to catch which one of my pets has been up to no good.

Some of these things may already have an app enabling them that I don't know about.
 

Savor

Suspended
Jun 18, 2010
3,742
916
- Lithium sulphur capacity up to 5-8x more than lithium-ion

- Wireless charging option

- Fast VOCC charging under 30 min 0-100% full charge

- Double tap wake up screen

- Customization like from Cyanogen Mod, MIUI, Android launchers. Ability to change every look of our phones and hide apps we like

- Swipe gestures

- Less bezel top/bottom

- Thinner than the Gionee Elife S5.1 at 5.1mm

- Water/dust proof

- Front stereo speakers

- IR blaster

- Wrap-around display that acts as a news ticker

- Better front-facing cams with dual flash (better selfies)

- Animated/less static icons


We say we don't need this feature or that. But everything gets improved. And we just roll with it. Who could've predicted features like LG's Knock-On/Knock Code features or HTC's BoomSound back in 2010? Nobody even wanted 5-inch screens back then. Now once people TRY IT out, some can't live without it. I thought in 2010-2011, we had reached our peak with iPhones & iOS. Based on hindsight, I was definitely WRONG. Technology is not about stopping. It is always moving and improving in areas we can't fathom to predict right now.
 

Applegal777

macrumors newbie
Oct 7, 2013
25
6
UK
I would like:

* Notification Light or Ring around fingerprint scanner

* NFC that pairs with cameras, other phones etc

* Less Bezels

* Better Battery Life

* More Ram
 

daviddcmd

macrumors regular
Apr 22, 2010
105
39
Don't flame me here but my Sony Z2 has many of those features already. 3GB RAM, 20MP camera, double tap screen on/off, water/dust proof, 1 1/2 day's battery on stamina mode, notification light, front stereo speakers, 1080 display. I'd rather have these specs than a thinner phone.

Seems to me Apple is more concerned with form over function although my phone looks awesome.
 

andyp350

macrumors 6502a
Aug 14, 2011
807
459
Surprised how many people want a notification light. Seriously it's annoying enough hearing everyone's phones going off 24/7 without having to bear witness to flashing lights everywhere as well.
 

Bazilemac

macrumors regular
Sep 10, 2014
172
0
I think with your question, you got to split your answer into two:



1) Hardware

2) Software.



Hardware



Apple will definately keep improving the battery life and the chip. They will eventually make the iphone water resistant and someday they may even make the screen out of sapphire. We may also get the glowy thing for notifications. Eventually, way down the track, we may even have built in tvs and AM/FM radios in the iphone. Someday everyone who owns an iphone or ipad may be able to watch free to air tv on their ios device, no different to watching it on a television. Just choose your channel and away you go. And what about solar powered and/or wireless charging?



Software



IMO the real progress of the iphone will come via the software. And this is where I think the Plus will have advantages over the non plus. More screen real estate equals more options to do stuff with the software. Apple could make it equally so for the non plus, but the lesser size may make it less practical. I have no doubt in my mind that the Plus will sooner rather than later be able to peform real multitasking, ala the Note, have two apps running on the screen at the same time. This has already been rumoured for a not too distant ipad model. So why not the iphone Plus? Also, the iphone Plus may eventually become akin to desktop computer complete with file manager, windows capabilities, etc. But like the tv and radio, that would be years off.

I agree with everything you said except for AMFM scanners because radio is slowly dying and children being born today today probably will not be listening to radio at all ten years from now. Streaming will be the new breakthrough. Also my old little flip phone had AMFM capabilities and that wasn't really exciting
 

ssls6

macrumors 6502a
Feb 7, 2013
558
153
For me

1) waterproof
2) more rugged, design out need for cases
3) thermal imaging
4) some type of VNC (screen share) so I can see running apps on mac
 

uiop.

macrumors 68020
Jul 22, 2008
2,024
16
Grand Rapids, MI
I think people always will think "what else can they possibly add", but there always is something.

Long stretch and it'll never happen, but I'd enjoy an SXM satellite receiver. Burning through my AT&T data to stream music is annoying. Speaking of satellite communication, they could add that to smartphones someday. In an area of no service, no problem.
 
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