iPhone 7 release date: Apple skipping iPhone 6S after antenna divorce?

The iPhone 7 release date may not be quite as far off as one might think, and the reason why just might be tied to antenna technology. Apple has long settled into a pattern in which it releases an “S” model every other year which is essentially just a souped up version of the previous year’s model, giving each iPhone generation a two-year lifespan. The reasoning was that most users are on two-year upgrade cycles with their carriers, and can only get every other iPhone model anyway. But that may be about to change, and it could have a major impact on the iPhone 7 arrival.

Over the past few years it’s become clear that the public is less than excited about Apple’s “S” models. But at the Apple was locked into a specific type of design. It moved the phone antenna to the outside of the device in order to make it thinner and lighter starting with the iPhone 4. Even as vendors like Samsung began changing up their design slightly each year in order to create the appearance of faster progress, Apple was stuck with the familiar metal bands running around the sides of the iPhone, which more or less forced it to not only do an iPhone 4S, but then offer an iPhone 5 and 5S which looked pretty much the same.

That’s all changed now, however. Apple has figured out how to make its iPhones thin and light without the need for the external antennas, resulting in an iPhone 6 which looks more like a flattened version of the original 2007 model than anything Apple has delivered in some time. Because it’s no longer tied to the antenna system, Apple is also no longer tied to having to keep the iPhone looking the same from one generation to the next. That means if Tim Cook and company decide that doing an iPhone 6S isn’t in the company’s best interests, it can jump directly to the iPhone 7 with a fully revamped look and styling.

Granted, the iPhone 7 release date would come no sooner than 2015. And with record setting iPhone 6 sales out of the gate, there’s no reason to expect Apple to rush into releasing a new iPhone any sooner than next fall. But for the first time in several years, there’s hope that Apple could skip the S model and jump directly to the next big thing.

Phil Moore

Phil Moore

Phil covers tech for Stabley Times.