Apple is scheduled to launch its highly awaited iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus at an unannounced event in September. Analysts predict that the next-generation iPhone may not perform as well compared to its predecessors and will instead disappoint.

Newly launched iPhones need no selling. Apple normally includes top-end features in its latest iPhones and iFans are hoping for the same in the next-gen iPhone 7 and the iPhone 7 Plus.

Rumors of the iPhone 7 had started surfacing soon after the launch of the iPhone 6s in fall 2015. Some speculations suggest that the iPhone 7 will have 3 GB of RAM and run on Apple's new A10 processor.

Customers look for a good camera in smartphones and iPhones do not disappoint. Apple bumped up the cameras of the iPhone 6s and the iPhone 6s Plus and now rumors hint that the iPhone 7 will have a better camera. The next-gen iPhone may be equipped with a dual-lens camera, which will improve the quality of images taken by the handset.

The iPhone 7 could also be waterproof and may be available in a blue hue. In addition, rumors claim that the iPhone 7 will have a pressure-sensitive home button and will not include an audio jack.

All these features are rumored and Apple has not confirmed any of these. Although Apple may include some novel features in next iPhone, reports suggest that the company is saving major updates for its 10th anniversary iPhone, dubbed iPhone 8, which is estimated to be launched in 2017.

Market experts have commented that the upcoming iPhone 7 may not live up to the hype.

"Right now everyone is looking forward to the iPhone 7. ... I think it can only disappoint," says Steve Grasso, director of institutional sales at Stuart Frankel.

Previously, KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has also predicted that iPhone 7 will have better features than the iPhone 6s, but the sales of the new phones will not be as high as its predecessor. Kuo added that the iPhone 7 looks similar in design to the iPhone 6 and the iPhone 6s, so nothing is really exciting about an old look with a few tweaks here and there.

According to the Mobile Web Intelligence Report Q2 2016 [PDF], which measures the popularity of brands by analyzing web traffic, Apple lost web traffic in 18 out of 20 countries in Q2 of 2016 compared to the same quarter of 2015.

Apple's web traffic reduced by 4 percent in the U.S., 6 percent in Germany and 10 percent in the UK. On the other hand, Samsung's web traffic increased in 18 out of 20 countries during the same period.

According to the International Data Corporation (IDC), Apple was placed second in the top five smartphone vendors list based on global shipments for Q1 and Q2 of 2016, only after Samsung. However, Apple sales declined in both the quarters.

"Apple's second quarter saw the Cupertino-based giant ship 40.4 million iPhones, representing a 15.0% year-over-year decline from the 47.5 million units shipped last year," says IDC.

Although market observers believe that the iPhone 7 may disappoint customers, it does not mean that Apple will be doomed. Apple has a huge fan base and there's a good chance the iPhone 7 will still attract many customers across the world.

Only time will tell if the next-generation iPhone 7 will live up to customer expectations.

Photo: Kārlis Dambrāns | Flickr

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