Stuart Breckenridge

Innovation Time. Or Not.

Adrian Kingsley-Hughes for ZDNet:

…Apple is facing a challenge that it’s not previously faced with the iPhone, and that is that sales have plateaued.

Have they? Based on the results of one financial quarter this is quite a statement. I’m sure it takes into consideration the pent up demand that existed for larger screened iPhones that resulted in huge sales for iPhone 6 and 6 Plus. I’m sure it also takes into consideration the 60%1 of users on pre-iPhone 6 devices that haven’t yet upgraded.

On the subject of the innovation needed for the iPhone 7:

Think there’s not much left that Apple could do? Think again! Here are just a few ideas off the top of my head:

  • Waterproof iPhone
  • More durable iPhone
  • VR integration
  • New battery technology
  • Built-in health sensors
  • Gesture control

Waterproofing has been attempted by Samsung and Sony, where it was abandoned by the former and discouraged by the latter2. The iPhone 6s is waterproofed to a degree; making it fully waterproof can’t be classed as innovation.

Is there a durability crisis with iPhones I’m not aware of? Does the use of stronger Gorilla Glass not make iPhones more durable? Or, for that matter, the use of stronger aluminium3?

VR is interesting, but what is the use case for integration in an iPhone and how would it work? VR, to me, makes no sense on an iPhone.

New battery technology: moving from Li-ion to something newer, longer lasting, and faster charging would be innovative. No disagreement here.

Health sensors for a device that’s mostly in your pocket? How would they work?

Gesture control is nothing more than a gimmick. Importantly, gesture control is not innovative as it’s been done before.

It’s a strange set of feature requests, to say the least.