Eight is a lucky number in many Asian cultures, and it's also a lucky number for Apple. Here's why. The iPhone 7, 8, and X are here today, and 8 was a backup in case the iPhone X was impossible.
As we reflect on the launch of the iPhone X (otherwise known as the iPhone Ten), and mull over all the rumours surrounding its release, we see a path. A path that involves creating a phone with a screen that covers the entire face of the device, requiring slim bezels and the re-arrangement of the camera, speakers, home button, Touch ID, and other sensors.
While the extraordinary iPhone X is a milestone achievement, but what about the step-upgrade from the iPhone 7 to the iPhone 8?
But wait, what happened to the iPhone 7s?
There was no iPhone 7s.
It appears that the iPhone 7s never made it to market, and instead, we have the iPhone 8.
The iPhone 8 is what most people would have expected the iPhone 7s to be: a step-upgrade from the 7, with a better processor, better camera, tweaked software, and a few other minor changes. That's largely what we got with the iPhone 8.
So why skip the branding of the 7s? The main reason is inside: the clever AR-capable cameras and processors, and the addition of wireless charging.
These clever new features will both feature heavily in the advertising for the iPhone X when it is released in November 2017. How did they make their way in to the iPhone 8?
Eight appears to have been a lucky number for Apple. The iPhone 8 branding signifies more of a "leap forward" than would have been possible marketing it as the iPhone 7s.
Furthermore, if Apple was to have issues in the manufacture of the advanced components for the iPhone X, and it became delayed, those with an iPhone 6, 6s, or 7 would be likely to jump to the iPhone 8 based on its name and some new headline features, than they would taking the bump-step upgrade to an iPhone 7s.
As it happens, Apple launched the iPhone 8 and the iPhone X side by side, but will release the iPhone 8 in October and the iPhone X in November.
However, we are seeing extremely limited manufacturing success with the iPhone X, specifically around the new TrueDepth camera system, which replaces Touch ID with Face ID.
So there you have it, the iPhone 8 exists to fill the gap while we wait for the magical iPhone X to exit the factory en masse.
We've jumped the number 9 completely. If the iPhone 8 is just an iPhone 7s that borrows the iPhone X processor and wireless charging, what's going on with the iPhone 9?
The iPhone X (Ten) was revealed on the 10th anniversary of the release of the first iPhone, so, fittingly it was called the iPhone X (the roman numeral for 10). It was intended to be a flagship device that changes the face of the iPhone and introduces a new form factor to the aging iPhone design language. It achieved that, but its complicated camera system held back supply, and the gap was plugged as explained above by the iPhone 8.
If the iPhone X issues take even longer to resolve, there's a place in the numerical lineage for the iPhone 9.
There's not many new features that could be included in an iPhone 9 to set it apart from the iPhone 8, without stealing the limelight from the iPhone X.
The iPhone 9 could ship with advanced wireless charging, upgraded Bluetooth, iBeacon integration, more RAM, a faster or more capable second edition AR engine, but would likely retain the same physical design as the iPhone 7 and 8.
We are more likely to see a new iPad Pro with Face ID, rather than an iPhone 9, unless Apple can't bring sufficient quantities of the iPhone X to market in time for the refresh cycle of the iPhone line.
iPhone X (iPhone 10)
We've been waiting to secure an iPhone X, which enters pre-order on October 27 and ships on November 3, 2017.
While it brings a raft of new features, most people will be excited about Face ID, AR, and finally having an iPhone that doesn't look 5 years old anymore. We love you, Apple.
Until next time,
XYZ Media Group