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iPhone 7 to Sport Waterproof Design?

Samsung got there first with the Galaxy S7, but the iPhone 7 could take waterproof phones to the next level. The Patently Apple blog reports that Apple has been awarded a patent for a system for taking photos underwater.

Credit: Unbox Therapy

(Image credit: Unbox Therapy)

The Galaxy S7 can be submerged for up to 30 minutes in 5 feet of water, but you can't snap pics because you can't interact with the phone's capacitive display when it's submerged. Not only could the iPhone 7 potentially capture images underwater, the patent says that Apple could offer editing tools to help you remove tints from objects while keeping the water looking blue.

The ability to take photos underwater isn't unprecedented. Alcatel's Onetouch Go Play allows you to use its camera when underwater by letting the phone's volume rocker trigger the camera's shutter, for instance. (Alcatel's phone can last 30 minutes in 3 feet of water.) But there are no built-in editing tools for adjusting the photo, as the iPhone 7 might offer.

Other reports have pointed to the iPhone 7 being waterproof, which could be one reason why Apple is supposedly ditching the headphone jack. That's one less hole for liquid to penetrate. In addition, some beta users of iOS 10 have reported seeing a notification that warns when a liquid has been detected.

Although the iPhone 7's design isn't expected to change in terms of size, adding waterproofing could help Apple drum up excitement for its new flagships, which are also said to sport much improved cameras, a faster A10 processor and a new pressure-sensitive home button. Moving away from a home button that physically depresses is yet another way Apple could be making its new phones good swimmers.

Does a waterproof design make you excited to upgrade your iPhone? Let us know in the comments.

Mark Spoonauer

Mark Spoonauer is the global editor in chief of Tom's Guide and has covered technology for nearly 20 years. In addition to overseeing the direction of Tom's Guide, Mark specializes in covering all things mobile, having reviewed dozens of smartphones and other gadgets. He has spoken at key industry events and appears regularly on TV to discuss the latest trends. Mark was previously editor in chief of Laptop Mag, and his work has appeared in Wired, Popular Science and Inc. Follow him on Twitter at @mspoonauer.

  • coldspring22
    This article is wrong. You CAN take photos underwater with Galaxy S7 using volume button as camera shutter switch!