We are getting into that time of the year when speculation about Apple’s next-generation smartphone starts to ramp up. The iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus have been with us for long enough to be old news now, which means analysts and industry insiders are starting to apply laser focus to Apple’s iPhone 8, due for launch later this year.

Many corners agree on a number of potential features and inclusions for the yet-to-be-announced hardware, but the latest speculation is suggesting that Apple could ship the smartphone with an embedded iris scanner for advanced authentication and security.

This latest information has made its way into the public domain thanks to the hit-and-miss prediction publication, DigiTimes, which cites the ever available “industry insiders” as the source of the interesting information.

Those sources are suggesting that Apple’s iPhone 8 – or whatever the hardware actually ends up being called when it makes it to market – will ship with an embedded iris scanner baked into its technical DNA, which will presumably be used in a similar fashion to Touch ID to unlock the device, authenticate App Store downloads, or even allow payments to take place via Apple Pay. This iris scanner would work alongside Touch ID rather than replacing it.

What’s particularly interesting is that this isn’t the first time that analysts and sources have suggested an improved authentication system for iPhone 8. Prominent analyst Ming-Chi Kuo of KGI Securities, as well as some other sources, have previously stated their belief that Apple will add additional functionality into the 10th anniversary iPhone in the form of facial recognition or iris scanner.

In addition to a potential iris scanner, Apple is also expected to entirely redesign its flagship 2017 iPhone model, complete with an almost edge-to-edge display utilizing flexible OLED panels for the first time, as well as having integrated wireless charging for the first time ever in an iPhone. The same publication is also suggesting that Apple will put this year’s iPhone into production earlier than expected, with Apple said to be expecting deliveries of components and chips in the second half of Q1 2017. That shouldn’t affect when we actually see the device released, however.

(Source: DigiTimes)

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