THE NEXT iPhone is just days away, and the latest rumour suggests it will come with a VERY handy new feature.
According to noted Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, the iPhone 14 could be the first Apple mobile to offer satellite services.
Satellite phones allow you to make calls and even send texts without any mobile phone signal or a WiFi connection.
As the name suggests, they connect to other phones over satellite rather than via cellular towers.
The tech has been used by people in remote locations – such as mountaineers or oil rig workers – for years.
However, it’s rarely loaded into everyday phones, instead largely appearing in specialist devices designed for outdoor use.
Apple appears to be planning to change that with the release of the iPhone 14, which is rumoured to be right around the corner.
According to Kuo, who has accurately leaked iPhone features in the past, Apple is working on satellite connectivity for the device.
In a blog post on Monday, he said that the Cupertino tech titan had already completed “hardware testing” on the feature.
The idea is that satellite communications would only be used in emergency texting or voice services.
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The technology is fast becoming a “must-have smartphone feature” with the “increasing frequency of natural disasters and geopolitical conflicts in recent years”, Kuo wrote.
However, Apple still has a significant hurdle to jump before its mobiles can make calls from anywhere in the world.
According to Kuo, the firm has yet to strike up a deal with any company that can provide a satellite network.
Without that, the iPhone 14 will have the capacity to beam to satellites without any satellites to connect to.
It’s unclear whether Apple will manage to seal a deal before September 7, when the iPhone 14 is expected to be unveiled.
Apparently, the iPhone 13 also had satellite technology installed but was unable to offer satellite calls after Apple failed to find an operator to sign on the dotted line.
We likely won’t know anything concrete until Apple’s annual launch event on September 7.
Apple hasn’t confirmed that it will showcase the new iPhone during the tech soirée, though its appearance is all but guaranteed.
The company is also rumoured to be showing off a new version of the Apple Watch and a new mixed reality headset.
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