Here are some smartphone technology trends that will dominate in the year 2017.
Samsung was one of the smartphone makers to stick to MicroUSB in their flagship phones. But now, this most popular USB standard which was common across almost all phones until a few years ago will be vanishing fast. Samsung has already introduced USB C in its new Galaxy A series phones. Other phone makers will follow the trend by introducing this port into their mid-range smartphones.
USB C's advantage is a higher rate of exchange of data and power. A USB C to USB C cable can transfer power or data either way. However, it should be kept in mind that USB C is different from other USB standards such as 3.1.
Last year, flagship phones incorporated the absolutely fast fingerprint sensors, while some mid-range phones also introduced the feature. Smartphones such as Moto G4 and Xiaomi Redmi 3S Prime had a fingerprint sensor either at the back or at the front. Companies like Lenovo are experimenting in phones such as the Lenovo Z2 Plus to bring more to the table, using the sensor for functions besides unlocking the phone.
Indian smartphone manufacturers, such as CREO and LYF, however missed out on the opportunity of including the feature on many occasions.
LG launched LG G5 with dual camera, Huawei followed suit with Mate 9, and later many other phone makers such as Xiaomi and even Apple incorporated the dual camera in some of their phones. The way the dual-camera system works is that either the two lenses are a combination of wide-angle and telephoto lens (with more depth of field) or a combination of colour and monochromatic lenses for greater detail.
The first implementations have been fairly impressive though it will take some time for these cameras to take professional quality photos.
A grave mistake that Apple made was to not include any kind of fast-charging technology in its new phone. Imagine charging a 3000 mAh battery with a 1A charger. On the other hand, OnePlus was the torchbearer of fast-charging with its Dash Charging technology. Others relied on some kind of variation of Qualcomm's Quick Charge tech. It is expected that the technology will soon be adopted by mid-range phones.
Bezel-less screen and HD screen for budget phones
Recently, Xiaomi unveiled a concept phone, which they also sold to the consumers in China, with a crazy 91.3 percent screen to body ratio. Companies such as Meizu and Nubia also showed off their bezel-less concepts that might be launched this year.
On the other hand, smartphone juggernauts such as Samsung and Apple are also considering nearly bezel-less displays for their flagship devices. They will employ the so-called supersonic fingerprint technology instead of a capacitive sensor to accommodate a bigger display in the same chassis. Also, expect lower-end devices to have Full HD screens. You can also expect many mid-range phones coming to terms with the QHD display.
Samsung has a range of phones that support Gear VR, and Google announced Pixel with Daydream support. More android phones can follow the Daydream guideline and be compatible with Daydream. Smartphone manufacturers such as Lenovo and Gionee have tried to produce better versions of the cardboard VR in the past year and incremental versions of these devices are expected in the market.
More smartphones to ditch the headphone jack
Apple, Moto, and LeEco were some of the notable names to say goodbye to the beloved 3.5 mm headphone jack. There are rumors that Samsung 's Galaxy series will be bidding it adieu as well. And it wouldn't be radical to anticipate more devices ditching it.
Galaxy S7 and iPhone 7 had it but Google's Pixel missed it. Water and dust proofing is something which is absolutely needed in smartphones. So say yes to more IP68 rated sturdy phones!
Besides these dominant trends, companies will probably increasingly use Corning Gorilla glass or Dragontail glass to make phones more secure. Also expect a flurry of AI assistants, such as the one Samsung is going to introduce in Galaxy S8. Siri and Google Assistant will surely be improved upon. It is a going to be a pretty exciting year for smartphones, not least because of the iPhone's 10th anniversary.