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What to expect from Apple’s iPhone event

An edge-to-edge iPhone 8, LTE Apple Watch, smart speaker and 4K Apple TV could feature

Apple’s September keynote is right around the corner, and rumours suggest a new smartphone won’t be the only product announced.

As Tim Cook takes to the stage in California, we could see the iPhone 8, 8 Plus and iPhone X debuted, but that trio of smartphones may be joined by other big products. Signs point to some exciting additions, including an LTE-enabled Apple Watch and a new Apple TV model that supports 4K movies.

We’ll be covering the latest news coming from Apple’s keynote on 12 September, so stay tuned for the details on the latest product reveals. In the meantime, we’ve rounded up the rumours that are gathering pace online.

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Smartphones galore – iPhone 8, iPhone X

iPhone 8

We wouldn’t be surprised to see Apple announce a follow up to the iPhone 7 in the form of the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus. While the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus would be the ‘lower-tier’ options, the iPhone X would be the headline-grabbing model with an edge-to-edge display. Over on Twitter, developer Steven Troughton Smith has been looking closely at the iOS 11 firmware files and sharing his findings. Smith has uncovered a line of code that seems to confirm the names of Apple’s new smartphones – iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus and iPhone X.

Industry insiders are hinting that we’ll see an OLED display on the successor to the iPhone 7, along with an upgraded processor that will have it running faster than the iPhone 7. Last year, the iPhone 7 was revealed on 7 September, before going on sale nine days later.

Once Apple’s new phones hit the market, older models will go down in price. To see if we recommend them, see our iPhone 7 review and iPhone 7 Plus review.

iPhone X

This is the big one – the elusive ‘iPhone X’. If Apple does unveil the next generation of the iPhone at this month’s keynote, it’ll steal the show. Back in June, alleged ‘Foxconn employees’ posted information online claiming the next iPhone would have a facial recognition system and a retina scanner.

As Apple’s iPhone event edges closer, we’re hearing more on the smartphone’s facial recognition tech. Twitter user Guilherme Rambo has shared a video for the Face ID initial setup. Once the iPhone 8 has learned what you look like, you’ll be able to use facial recognition to unlock your phone or make purchases through the App Store. There are also whispers of an ‘Animoji’ feature, which will create 3D animated emoji based on the expressions you make towards the camera.

A water-resistant design was also mentioned, as was wireless charging support, 3GB of Ram and a dual rear camera system with a vertical configuration (one lens above the other).

Image: Forbes, Nodus

The display is what should really set the iPhone X apart from Apple’s older phones. ‘Leaked’ snaps show a 5.8-inch OLED edge-to-edge display that follows in the footsteps of other smartphones such as the LG G6 and Samsung Galaxy S8.

As the screen stretches to the far corners of the phone, Apple can increase its size without making the phone bigger and tougher to hold. There’s no room for the home button, which has led some to guess that the fingerprint sensor will live on the back of the phone or underneath the display.

So what about price? A report from Forbes suggests that the iPhone X will cost between $1,110 (£844) to $1,200 (£920). A more recent claim from renowned Twitter leaker Benjamin Geskin has the 64GB model at $999 (£763), 256GB at $1,099 (£839) and 512GB at $1,199 (£916). Bear in mind, though, that UK prices do tend to be higher than a direct conversion might suggest.

Apple Watch Series 3 with LTE

After digging through iOS 11 firmware files, 9to5Mac has uncovered an image of what is said to be the Apple Watch Series 3. The LTE-enabled wearable is seen with a unique, red Digital Crown (the round button), and the display of the watch shows a phone icon and a location marker icon, suggesting the device pictured has LTE connectivity. That’ll give you more freedom to leave the house and contact friends and family directly through the watch.

Take a look at our Which Apple Watch should I buy? guide if you’re considering buying an Apple Watch. Or you can head over to our smartwatch reviews page for more alternatives from the likes of Samsung, Huawei, Sony and Garmin.

4K support for Apple TV

Around two years have passed since the last iteration of Apple TV, so we’re due an update. As streaming services make more fuss over 4K content, it feels odd that the current Apple TV doesn’t support the format. That will change if Apple unveils a 4K-compatible 5th-generation model this week, and it seems likely, considering 4K films are appearing on iTunes.

According to details found in Apple firmware files, the fifth-generation Apple TV will arrive powered by an A10X Fusion chip and 3GB of Ram. For comparison, the older model uses an A8 chip, which means it’s likely that its successor will be far quicker to use.

Want to see how the 4th-generation Apple TV performed in our test lab? Take a look at our full Apple TV review.

The HomePod speaker

The Apple HomePod smart speaker will probably also make an appearance. Due for release in December, the HomePod is a Siri-enabled speaker aiming to compete with the Amazon Echo.

It’s priced at £270, which gets you a hefty wireless speaker with a four-inch subwoofer. Apple says that the HomePod will ‘re-invent home music’ as it can adjust audio to create sound that suits any space. Built-in sensors help it identify where it’s sat in the room and what’s around it.

As it’s powered by Siri, HomePod will connect you to Apple Music and other Apple services you might use on a regular basis. You can also use the speaker to set reminders, answer questions or check the weather forecast. Want to upgrade your living room with a voice-controlled smart hub? We’ve rounded up our top picks in our guide to the top three smart hubs for 2017.

Apple AirPods

Elsewhere, there are suggestions that Apple will be unveiling an update to its wireless AirPods this week. Twitter user Steven Troughton Smith has shared an image apparently showing off the AirPods in their newly designed case, which now has a battery indicator on the front.

Although we haven’t heard of any major changes with regards to the AirPods, this new version of the case will at least save you from having to open it to check battery life.

More details on iOS 11

The latest version of iOS will bring a host of changes to the iPhone, including an App Store redesign and a facelift for the Maps app, which will help you navigate hectic indoor spaces like shopping centres. Siri’s getting smarter too, and Apple says the voice assistant will be able to offer help on translating phrases. It will also recommend music to listen to, based on your favourites.

Apple will be ending support for devices that run on 32-bit processors, so that means the 2012 iPhone 5 and 2013 iPhone 5c miss out on iOS 11.

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