Apple iPhone
An Apple iPhone 7 and the company logo are seen in this illustration picture taken in Bordeaux, France, February 1, 2017. Reuters/Regis Duvignau

Apple CEO Tim Cook has revealed that many exciting things are in the pipeline for the company. Apple iPhone 8 is definitely one of the items in pipeline. During a quarterly earnings call, Cook fuelled speculation about the company’s product roadmap. He said that the iPhone 8 “is still in the early innings of the game” and there is still a lot more to be done. When asked, what the next-gen iPhone would offer customers, Cook hinted at home automation, CarPlay and Health. While Enterprise use of the iPhone is growing, Cook also talked about the power of Siri.

According to Express, Apple’s virtual personal assistant Siri will go head-to-head with Samsung’s own virtual assistant Bixby. Samsung may unveil Bixby ahead of Galaxy S8’s release. It is expected to boast a number of AI features currently not available on Siri. This includes the ability of Bixby to identify real-world objects with the smartphone’s camera. Once the assistant has identified an object, the Samsung Galaxy S8 will direct the user to the online retailers where the object is available.

Apple will not be left behind as it is working on a number of improvements on its assistant. It is however unclear if the next-gen Siri will come as an exclusive feature on the iPhone 8 or will be included in the iOS 11 update. According to Tech Times, 2017 is a crucial year for Apple as a September release of the iPhone 8 will coincide with the 10th anniversary of the iPhone. Moreover, Google has also dethroned Apple as the world’s most-valuable brand. Many tech experts believe that Apple is reaching a brand saturation point.

Apple is expected to bring in a new design for the Apple iPhone 8 and renew interest in the brand. This will be a tough ask as the Cupertino-based tech giant faces stiff competition from the likes of Samsung, Google and Huawei. It is becoming increasingly difficult for Apple to stand out from the competition. Numerous Chinese smartphone makers are capturing market share real fast by offering top specs at greatly affordable prices. Apple of course has an advantage as it manufactures its iPhone chips and also has its own operating system.

However, the factories that make the chips also make processors of other smartphone brands. Moreover, many parts are already available “off the shelf” in supply chains. Apple is said to be using an OLED curved display in the iPhone 8. However, much before the device releases in September, Samsung will use the same OLED technology in its Galaxy S8. This immediately provides the Galaxy handset an edge over Apple.