We have a pretty solid idea about what the headline features of the next-generation iPhone will be – new triple-lens camera on the back, improved Face ID, reverse wireless charging, and a fast wired charger in the box. Or at least we thought we did, until an accessory maker shared a case for the next iPhone that reveals a very exciting new feature coming to the handset.
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Accessory store Mobile Fun has posted a number of new listings (opens in new tab) for a series of iPhone 11 cases, which include a cut-out for the controversial new square camera bump, as well as a place to store an Apple Pencil to use with the smartphone.
Yes, it seems Apple might want to really bring the fight to the Samsung Galaxy Note 10 and Galaxy Note 10+ with its next handset, aping the S Pen stylus functionality with its Apple Pencil accessory from the best-selling Apple iPad Pro range.
There have been numerous rumours that Apple would bring the Pencil stylus to its iPhone, although the company has yet to prove any of these reports accurate.
Apple Pencil would make handwritten notes easier than using a finger, as well as annotating emails and screenshots, drawing, or editing video and photos. The S Pen has proven to be very popular with Galaxy Note customers.
With the latest entry in the series, Samsung has brought the ability to remotely trigger the camera, zoom and switch between photography modes, as well as move between slides on a keynote using Bluetooth.
Despite the extra functionality brought about by the stylus, many assumed that Apple would never bring the feature to its smartphone series. Mostly because Apple co-founder Steve Jobs spoke so strongly on the subject.
Speaking during the introduction of the original iPhone in 2007, Jobs jokingly told the crowd: "Who wants a stylus? You have to get 'em, put 'em away, you lose 'em.
“Yuck! Nobody wants a stylus."
There are rumours Apple will use the brand name "Pro" for its next line of flagship smartphones. Adding the ability to use a stylus could be a good way of distinguishing what counts as a "Pro" level device from Apple – both iPad Pro and iPhone Pro would support the latest version of the Apple Pencil – while some older iPads support the first-generation stylus, and non-Pro iPhones support only fingers on touchscreens.
Thankfully, we don't have long to wait to find out whether the Mobile Fun listing has jumped the gun and revealed something very secretive ahead of the iPhone 11 release date... or whether the whole thing is nothing more than wishful thinking.
Apple is widely expected to launch the next iPhone on September 10, 2019. T3 will have all of the news as soon as it breaks, so stay tuned.