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KooL BeAnZ

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Apr 4, 2012
336
469
What would be your Ultimate iPhone, based around what’s potentially possible?

For me, it would be an iPhone that’s:

6.9” Screen Size (like S20U)
Smaller Bezels
MicroLED
12-bit Colour
2000-nits Peak Brightness
1200-1800 Sustained Brightness
3nm A-Series Chip
4K Screen Resolution (Dyanamic to scale with content)
Quad-Camera Setup (best available)
Quad-Speakers
No Physical Buttons (Touch/Feedback)
No Sim Tray (eSim)
No Charging Port
MagSafe 2.0 with 100W Fast Charge
No Notch
Under-Screen Front Camera
Under-Screen Touch-ID or Side Touch ID.
Polished Titanium Enclosure
Jet Black Colour
240Hz Pro Motion+
All Day Battery / Next Gen Battery
Latest 5G/6G Ready
Latest WiFi 6E / 7 Ready

Ability to hide the little Home Bar that insists to be on screen always!!!
 

eyoungren

macrumors Penryn
Aug 31, 2011
28,568
26,420
Somewhere between the size of the iPad Mini and the iPhone Max. Black, no fugly camera boil (flush with the casing). Pretty much don't care about the rest as I use my phone as a phone, not a computer or a media device.

Also don't care about the notch. Its the friggin camera boil I want to see obliterated.
 

MICHAELSD

macrumors 603
Jul 13, 2008
5,396
3,386
NJ
There is no end game. Apple will see to it.
We’re already approaching the point where consumers are upgrading their phone every 2-3+ years. An iPhone like OP described may last even longer, but would probably carry a significantly more expensive price tag. I could imagine a titanium design costing $1,999+.

If it can reasonably last ~ 5 years customers will extend their finance terms. In fact, we may be heading towards more expensive iPhones financed over longer terms once we’ve reached the notch-less endgame with groundbreaking durability and practically perpetual battery life.
 
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Martin Bland

macrumors member
Jun 9, 2014
46
149
Excellent camera, navigation, payments, ID, keys, phone/texting, with day+ long battery life packaged in something roughly the size of an Apple Watch with a third the thickness. Something extremely portable and light for EDC.

I can use a desktop/laptop/iPad for items that need more display space but I won’t need to carry those around if I have my super watch.

Oh, and no Apple installed backdoors.
 
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ian87w

macrumors G3
Feb 22, 2020
8,704
12,633
Indonesia
Dimension and screen size: iPhone X/11 Pro size
Weight: max around 180g
Battery: more than 3000mAh, with easy/cheap replacement plan
Screen: LTPO OLED with variable refresh rate. I don't need high refresh rate, but a variable one (eg. 1Hz to 60Hz) can save battery, so why not.
SoC: A15 or better (it's hard to set a ceiling for this). Probably support for ARM v9?
RAM/Storage: at least 6GB RAM, 256GB storage
Camera: triple set with telephoto, wide, and ultra wide, with all the standard flagship features like OIS, etc. 12MP for telephoto and ultrawide is fine, but the wide ideally is higher at 64MP or so to provide lossless zoom between it and the telephoto.
Front facing camera: current faceID setup seems fine enough.
Biometrics: FaceID and TouchID
Back material: plastic like the S21 is fine. Glass is heavy and fragile. Metal won't allow wireless charging. Plastic is durable, light, and allow wireless charging. Plastic can be high quality and textured as well to provide great feel.
SIM: dual physical SIM slot with eSIM support. Samsung can do it with the S21, so why can't Apple?
Port: USB-C with PD. I don't like the port personally, but it's the standard.
Rest: IP68, latest wireless standards, 5 years OS support with additional 3 years of security updates
Price: ~$800

Seems reasonable. Essentially a smaller iPhone 13 Pro with less fancy build materials for less.
 

odonnelly99

macrumors regular
Jan 9, 2013
174
256
Austin, TX
What would be your Ultimate iPhone, based around what’s potentially possible?

For me, it would be an iPhone that’s:

6.9” Screen Size (like S20U)
Smaller Bezels
MicroLED
12-bit Colour
2000-nits Peak Brightness
1200-1800 Sustained Brightness
3nm A-Series Chip
4K Screen Resolution (Dyanamic to scale with content)
Quad-Camera Setup (best available)
Quad-Speakers
No Physical Buttons (Touch/Feedback)
No Sim Tray (eSim)
No Charging Port
MagSafe 2.0 with 100W Fast Charge
No Notch
Under-Screen Front Camera
Under-Screen Touch-ID or Side Touch ID.
Polished Titanium Enclosure
Jet Black Colour
240Hz Pro Motion+
All Day Battery / Next Gen Battery
Latest 5G/6G Ready
Latest WiFi 6E / 7 Ready

Ability to hide the little Home Bar that insists to be on screen always!!!
All of this, but make it a folding phone, too.

Mock Samsung all you want. I owned a Galaxy Fold 3 for almost two weeks before returning it for an iPhone 13 Pro. It was awesome — it felt like I was holding something five years from the future in my hands.

I loved using the s-pen, and the size, unfolded, was great. I remember holding it side by side with the new iPad mini at Best Buy, and they were way closer in size than you’d think.

Why did I return it, then? That’s a simple answer: it didn’t run iOS, and the Android tablet experience still STINKS.

I gave it a fair shake, and then some! (I even bought and paired it with a Galaxy Watch 4. But that… experience is better discussed in it’s own post).

I hated losing FaceTime and iMessage. I hated sending super compressed photos and videos that were so blurry they were almost unwatchable to friends/family.

All the talk of RCS “fixing everything” was BS. It only worked on google messages, not the stock messages app. And Google messages doesn’t work well with the Galaxy Watch, because it doesn’t integrate as well.

Oh, and not being able to instantly airdrop stuff to my iPad Pro to work on annoyed me.

These are the only the major pain points I can remember now, nearly 3 months later. But there were more — it truly was a death by a thousand cuts.

Additionally, Android tablet apps (EVEN on a small tablet) are trash. Still. Over a freaking decade since the first Android tablets came out. It really does boggle the mind.

Even Chrome or Samsungs browser were more difficult to use then they should be; it seemed like every website I went to, I had to go into the browser settings and adjust the page zoom and font size for it to display correctly. I’m sure I have some screenshots saved to back up what I’m bitching about.

The Kindle app and reading comics was great on it, though.

I probably would have kept it if the tablet experience was good, and just quietly suffered through the lack of my beloved iOS creature comforts.

But it wasn’t, and I was legitimately angry that I had to return it and go back to a tall slab of a phone.

Once (if) Apple’s in the folding phones game, I hope to god they nail it. There’s so much potential.

It feels so freaking cool to open your phone up and have a tablet sized screen in front of you. And you know what? I bet Apple’s known that for longer than we think?
 
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odonnelly99

macrumors regular
Jan 9, 2013
174
256
Austin, TX
I am happy with my iPhone mini. :D

I was too — I had a two week trial of 12 mini leading up to the 13s release. Loved it. Then I let my love of the telephoto lens pull me away from it.

Which is hilarious, because I’m beyond frustrated with the telephoto lens on the 13 Pro. The jump from 2X zoom to 3X more or less ruined the way I use it.

I know that sounds silly, but it does. I rarely ever want to zoom in that far.

I’ve always used the telephoto lens as a portrait lens (kind of like a 85mm lens), but now it’s feels like it’s a freaking wildlife zoom lens.

That being said, I have gotten some quality squirrel footage with it lately:

 

wirefire

macrumors member
Jun 12, 2015
78
68
iPhone endgame.....

it should be made of a transparent non-rigid polymer that becomes rigid when a voltage is applied to it.
it should be able to be ANY color I want since the device will be completely surrounded by display
the device would be approximately 6.9" diagonal but that is when it is folded in half considered normal operating mode. it can be unfolded for a "large screen experience"

all of the electronics should be optically invisible and flexible so the device could be "rolled"up and placed in a tube.
charging would be 100% wireless and require no physical contact

.....

this isn't meant to be entirely ridiculous... it is meant to show that technology will always advance and there is no "end game". typically apple takes a wait and see approach... other companies may have a tech first but apple comes along and refines it into someone people think they "need".

I would really love a semi-rigid foldable transparent phone. I would sacrifice the camera and all of the frills for a simple single sheet device.
 

Populus

macrumors 601
Aug 24, 2012
4,380
6,276
Spain, Europe
My End Game iPhone? I’m not too demanding to be honest: a 5,4” iPhone, just like the 13 mini, with under display fingerprint reader (Touch ID). I don’t mind the notch, I’m ok wether it is there or not, but I want Touch ID.

Also, if it could have a Telephoto sensor, a LiDAR sensor and a 3nm SoC with the same performance of the A15 at half the power consumption, with a substantially better battery life, that would be my End Game, and I’d say “I won’t but any smartphone in, at least, 10 years”.
 
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julesme

macrumors 6502a
Oct 14, 2016
588
2,076
San Jose
Any iPhone steady state scenario has to provide the battery life of the Apple Watch: the assurance that it will last from morning to night 100 out of 100 days, with no charging anxiety whatsoever.
 

unchecked

macrumors 6502
Sep 5, 2008
389
482
We’re already approaching the point where consumers are upgrading their phone every 2-3+ years. An iPhone like OP described may last even longer, but would probably carry a significantly more expensive price tag. I could imagine a titanium design costing $1,999+.

If it can reasonably last ~ 5 years customers will extend their finance terms. In fact, we may be heading towards more expensive iPhones financed over longer terms once we’ve reached the notch-less endgame with groundbreaking durability and practically perpetual battery life.
We reached that multi-year refresh cycle point a long time ago.

But you're right, I usually refresh every third generation (4, 5s, 7, 11). My iPhone 11 Pro is going into it's third year next year and because it costed me so much and is still not lacking behind by much, I'm very compelled to have it last another year and planning to skip the 14 too, regardless of how it going to end up being.
 

BigPotatoLobbyist

macrumors 6502
Dec 25, 2020
301
155
  • 1) iPhone XS body as the base frame/exterior. Don't care if I lose Ceramic Shield to be honest.
  • 7) Slightly smaller bezels than XS.
  • 6) A. USB-C (if so with USB-4)
  • 6) B. Wireless charging exclusively, and improved power delivery at that with a weird 6GHz wireless diagnostic module as seen on the AW S7.
  • 2) Improved water proofing seal. Specifically, if I can have water resistance that is more similar to the AW than current phone iterations, then I'll be open to having MagSafe exclusively, AKA option B) for the ports or lack thereof.
  • 3) 8GB LPDDR5X RAM. Voltage, bandwidth improvement upon LPDDR5 depending on speeds.
  • 4) Newer Qualcomm modem e.g. after the X60 so the X65, or anything for mid-bands and efficiency improvement under load in particular.
  • 5) ****ing Bluetooth 5.2 and onwards with full LC3/LC3 Plus codec support from the Bluetooth LE Audio stack.

There is numerical indication of priority, but ordered by general domain of the technology.

As a tangent, latest generation & cutting-edge node SOC would obviously be in there, but running a bit cooler. In principle it's true clocking faster can improve energy efficiency on a per-task basis, but actual power efficiency per a discrete unit of time is harmed and you can suffer throttling acutely if you push clocks/heat too far. Ergo, throw on an additional 2 little cores for some background tasks, and run the big cores at 2.5-2.8 GHz during single-thread UI interaction. Rest is kind of meh to me, this is all really a question of "what would I change about the current models given existing or soon-to-be realized technologies" which is interesting as a question but one must be consistent in applying this constraint to the demands at least as an upper bound.

EDIT: Edited for clarity and formatting, + a bit more on the SOC/RAM/Modem.
 
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