Although Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) recently launched the iPhone 6s and 6s Plus, the rumor mill is (naturally) focused on what the iDevice maker has planned for next year's iPhone 7 and 7 Plus.
Since the two phones will be, in the words of Daring Fireball's John Gruber, "new-number iPhones," it is widely expected that they will be substantially redesigned compared to the iPhone 6/6s generation of devices. This fact often invites some very "creative" rumors and speculation.
In this article I'd like to go over three rumors that have cropped up about the device that are most likely bogus.
No metal chassis for iPhone 7?
According to a post on Weibo, the iPhone 7/7 Plus will move away from using a metal chassis and will instead adopt a new casing material.
There's a very simple reason that I don't buy this rumor. According to DigiTimes, one of Apple's top metal casing suppliers, Catcher Technology, is expected to increase its production capacity by 67% this year. The company is also "expected to keep expanding capacity in 2016."
Although Apple isn't Catcher Technology's only customer, it is surely one of its largest -- if not its largest -- customers. If Apple were planning to move away from metal casings in the iPhone 7/7 Plus, then it seems unlikely that Catcher -- which would be on the brink of losing a substantial amount of business -- would be expanding manufacturing capacity.
I don't think investors should believe this rumor.
Per a report claiming that Apple is testing several iPhone prototypes, one of the technologies that the iDevice maker is reportedly considering for the iPhone 7 is an AMOLED display rather than a traditional LCD. It reportedly even has prototype iPhone 7 models with such displays.
Finding evidence to contradict this particular rumor isn't hard.
In a recent article, my fellow Foolish colleague Steve Symington highlighted a quote from Universal Display (NASDAQ:OLED) CFO Sidney Rosenblatt that strongly suggests the iPhone 7 will not come equipped with an OLED display:
Realistically, based upon the number of phones that [Apple sells], [OLED display] capacity won't be in the marketplace until 2017 if they decide to do it.
Perhaps Apple has prototype iPhone 7 models with AMOLED displays, but I seriously doubt that such a device is in the running to be the iPhone 7 that actually makes it to shelves.
USB Type-C connector?
The same report claiming that Apple is testing out AMOLED displays also claimed that the company has prototypes of the next iPhone that implement a USB Type-C port.
This rumor doesn't make sense; I simply can't see Apple ditching its proprietary Lightning connector in favor of a "standard" USB Type-C connector.
Indeed, the company seems committed to advancing its Lightning port. For example, Ars Technica's Andrew Cunningham (via Daring Fireball) confirmed with Apple that the Lightning port on the iPad Pro supports USB 3.0, even though the Lightning cable that ships with the device only supports USB 2.0 speeds.
Additionally, there is a substantial installed base of Lighting-based accessories out there, including fairly new ones like the iPhone dock. Although Apple isn't the kind of company that would stifle technical/user experience innovation in the name of backward compatibility, ditching Lightning for USB Type-C isn't an "innovation" that's worth obsoleting millions of Lighting-based accessories.