By now we all know a new iPhone is coming and from the leaked images of the supposed case, we know what it will look like—assuming Apple hasn’t played us all by leaking a fake concept shell. While Apple detractors will say the new iPhone looks like the old iPhone, simply stretched, that’s about as accurate as saying the iPad is simply a big iPhone, it’s not even close. There’s a lot to the new iPhone, some we know, like the new metal backing, darker gun metal frame, the relocation of the headphone jack, larger speak grills (possibly for stereo sound), a better camera, LTE and perhaps the biggest change, a 4-inch display. Then there are things that keep us guessing, like an overhaul of the iOS home screen, an area of iOS that wasn’t even brushed upon at WWDC. We know the new 4-inch display will require iOS to display things differently, so what will Apple show at their fall event? We’ve also heard about the possible inclusion of NFC into the new iPhone, presumably to work with their new PassBook app. Then there are the things we don’t know, but like every previous iPhone before it, there is always some new “tech” that Apple throws into a new iPhone, that nobody expected, be it software or hardware, that makes people need it.
That all being said, is the new iPhone the same as the old iPhone 4S? No, it’s not. Is it familiar? Absolutely. Here’s the thing, the iPhone 4 and 4S have a design that millions of people love. If you doubt that statement, I present you with this fact. After Apple announced the iPhone 4S, with the same exterior of the iPhone 4, critics lauded the fact that Apple didn’t change it. Blogs and tech sites said it was the same. But when Apple posted their fourth quarter earnings, the iPhone 4S sold a record breaking 32 million units out of a total of 38 million total iPhones sold. If that doesn’t prove the fact that people like the design, I don’t know what else does. So it makes sense that Apple would want to stick with something that the general public loves, it’s something that they are use to seeing, only slightly different. It will still feel the same in their hand because it’s the same width as the iPhone 4 and 4S, again making people feel instantly comfortable with the new iPhone.
People’s affection towards the iPhone’s previous designs could be one reason why Apple has only strayed a little ways away in terms of design, another reason could be the fear of being sued. Apple has sort of trapped themselves in a corner, suing other companies for mimicking their design on the iPhone and iPad, Perhaps they are now weary of venturing to far from their typical design, with something so different, due to the fact another company could turn the tables and say that Apple has now copied their design. Prior to the iPhone in 2007, Apple wasn’t a big dog in the smartphones space, but now they are enemy number one to Samsung, HTC, Motorola, Sony and countless others, any one of these companies would love to sue Apple for coping one of their designs.
Could this be the reason Apple hasn’t “radically” changed their iPhone design since 2010 or could it be something else entirely? Let us know your thoughts.