Apple is expected to announce its next iPhone during September 2016, but rumours are already emerging about a new model being unveiled in 2017.
MacRumors reported that KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo predicted that the 2017 iPhone will adopt a design similar to the iPhone 4.
This would represent a major departure from Apple’s current release pattern.
Since the launch of the iPhone 3G in 2008, Apple has introduced a new exterior design for its smartphone every second year.
The iPhone 6 range, which was released in September 2014, was the last time Apple introduced new designs for the iPhone. It also marked the launch of the new larger-screened iPhone 6 Plus.
According to Kuo, the 2017 iPhone will have a curved glass screen and casing, with metal edges.
It will feature a 5.8-inch AMOLED display, wireless charging, and facial or iris recognition.
Despite the larger screen, the curved design may make the new model look smaller than the existing 5.5-inch iPhone 6s Plus, said Kuo.
Kuo’s predictions are in line with earlier reports on MacRumors that the iPhone models launching this year would look the same as the iPhone 6s range.
No mention has been made of an expected name change, and MacRumors expects the new iPhones to be called the iPhone 7.