It is such a long time since I wrote an article on smartphone rumours as there is nothing really exciting about smartphones anymore. No game changing features, no mouth watering spec sheets and no revolutionary functionalities. Who wants to feel surprised that the upcoming iPhone 7 Plus will feature a 3GB RAM? Or that both the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus will be water proof? These are the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus rumours that have surfaced only two months after the launch of iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus.
3GB RAM is the modern day standard RAM size in most Android high end devices, 2GB RAM having been relegated to the midrange spectrum. Today’s top end Android phones are being defined by 4GB RAM and other paper huge specs in screen resolution (some are going 4K), octa core processors that clock 2 GHz in speed, and gigantic camera resolutions.
Areas in which Apple still lag behind the top notch Android devices include battery capacity, processor power and screen resolution. The camera resolution has also been a megre 8 MP as iPhone declined to upgrade the sensor, citing better photos taken by iPhones compared to photos by other smartphones. But when Samsung tweaked the sensor and software in the Samsung Galaxy S6’s 16 MP camera to become the best camera in the mainstream smartphone world, Apple was forced to upgrade the camera on the iPhone 6s to 12 MP; although the performance of the camera didn’t surpass that of Samsung Galaxy S6.
The rumours by research company TrendForce which also predicts that Apple will launch its iPhone 7C (a 4 inches midrange smartphone) in the second quarter of 2016, estimates that the sales of iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus will near the sales of Samsung smartphones. “Based on TrendForce’s estimation, about 260 million iPhones will be shipped in 2016, representing an annual growth of 12.5% and a market share of 18.5%” writes TrendForce in a Press Release. This huge increase in smartphone sales will not however surpass sales by Samsung that is expected to drop from 323 million units in 2015 to 310 million units in 2016, representing a drop of 4 percent.
According to Statista, In 2014, Apple sold a total of 169 million phones and by quarter 3 of 2015, the iPhone sales had surpassed 183 million units.
The other parts of TrendForce forecast include projections that the smartphone market in 2016 will shrink by 9.7% as the market become saturated, despite the continued rollout of cheap budget and midrange smartphones from China that target developing countries. The Chinese manufacturers will however be able to increase their shipment by about 14.5% to account for 41% of the global smartphone shipments.
TrendFroce explained the shrinking smartphone shipment as follows, “Double-digit shipment growth is a thing of the past for vendors as the global market has begun to plateau in 2015 after years of growth” said TrendForce smartphone analyst Avril Wu. “While Samsung has kept its shipment title through the year, it is struggling against Apple in the high-end market and being pushed out of the mid-range and low-end segments by Chinese competitors. Facing challenges on two fronts, Samsung’s smartphone business will operate in an increasingly difficult situation in the near future. Closely trailing Samsung in global shipments is Apple, which remains as the dominant and most profitable vendor in the high-end market. As for Chinese brands, they are expanding overseas to gain market share. Huawei’s shipments surpassed 100 million units this year and became the third leading vendor on account of its export efforts. Xiaomi and Lenovo are also branching into the emerging markets.”