Apple cored? iPhone 16 may finally debut far smaller hole-punch front camera, experts believe – but Android rivals have already had it for years

  • Apple is testing a new front camera on the iPhone, according to online rumors
  • It would replace the oblong ‘dynamic island’ and look more like Android designs
  • It’s unclear whether it will be deployed on the iPhone 16 

Rumor has it Apple is planning to replace the iPhone’s dynamic island with a single hole-punch camera. 

If the whispers are true, the industry leader will be following a design that Android phones have used for years.

The current iPhone design submerges the front-facing cameras in a pool of black pixels called the dynamic island, which also functions as an interactive display, rather than dead space on the phone’s screen. 

‘Apple is testing a iPhone 16 Pro hole punch version, but it may not be finalized,’ according to X user MajinBuOfficial. ‘Details will depend on March next year. I guess most likely we won’t see such a version until the iPhone 17’

The change would fit Apple’s reputation for broadcasting, with great fanfare, its new developments that are already standard features on Android phones. 

Samsung phones, for instance, sport hole-punch front cameras. And they have for years.

X user MajinBuOfficial shared a mockup of what the iPhone might look like if Apple ditched the dynamic island in favor of a hole punch

A major advantage of the hole-punch camera design is that it occupies less space on the screen. Readers with excellent memory may recall that some older smartphones used to have large black areas at the top of the screen where the camera lived. 

Those were known as notches. 

But nothing is confirmed yet when it comes to the latest iPhone.

Apple may be testing the feature, but that does not necessarily mean it has plans to swap the camera design.

And in fact, there have been rumors that Android makers could copy the dynamic island, instead. 

Though Apple may have earned a reputation among tech geeks for following the pack, it has been a trendsetter in some ways.

Some of these ways include eliminating features. 

Apple led the industry in getting rid of headphone jacks, and in selling wall chargers separately rather than including them in the box with a new phone. 

And indeed, early this year Realme released its C55 phone, the first Android phone with a dynamic island-like feature. 

The Samsung Galaxy A51, which was released in December 2019, features a hole-punch front camera

The Samsung Galaxy A51, which was released in December 2019, features a hole-punch front camera

Third-party app makers have also rolled out dynamic island apps for Android phones, to let Android users crib the one good feature that Apple beat them to.

MajinBuOfficial is not alone in hypothesizing about Apple’s next move. In fact, display industry professional Ross Young shared a mockup of a hole-punch camera-equipped iPhone last year.

So it seems that this rumor has been around for a while.

And with the iPhone 16 set to come out in 2024, users in the comments to MajinBuOfficial’s post noted that Apple will probably keep the dynamic island around for the upcoming generation.

But maybe not for the iPhone 17.