The twists and turns of the iPhone 8 saga are beginning to cause even Apple's biggest fans to tire of the whole situation. Will the phone be delayed? How much will it cost? Will it have Touch ID? Where will the Touch ID be?
These are all topics the technology press, including IBTimes UK, have covered in great detail for months, ever since rumours of the next iPhone emerged earlier than usual at the start of 2017. The current picture is one of utter confusion, with industry sources and apparent supply chain leaks contradicting each other on a near-daily basis.
"Jesus ******* Christ," began one member of the MacRumors forum, a place for discussion on all things Apple. "The rumor cycle for this particular iPhone has been unbearably ridiculous," they continued. "Major contradictions on the daily and summaries of every possible outcome weekly. The hype train on this is a headache, everyone needs to chill out."
The latest cause for complaint is the new handset's Touch ID sensor, a fingerprint reader Apple uses to unlock the iPhone. It is claimed Apple is trying to install it beneath the glass front, embedded into the display. But this is, the unverified chitchat continues, difficult to produce on the massive scale an iPhone launch demands. Instead, it might appear on the back, like on the Samsung Galaxy S8, or on the power button, as Sony does with its smartphones.
'Next I'll read the iPhone 8 can summon Steve Jobs'
"Yawn," another forum member said to news of the sensor not being on the power button. "One week it's a touch sensor on the front, the next it's on the side. Next time I'll read that you can summon Steve Jobs by placing your pinky toe on the back of the [iPhone] 8 while whispering Apple's stock price."
It seems even the Apple faithful, those who queue up for days for the latest iProduct, can only ride the hype train for so long. Seven full months without the juicy morsel of a physical leak appears to be their limit. A single clear photo of a large component would no doubt sustain them for another few weeks, and a repeat of that time Apple lost a prototype iPhone in a tequila bar would likely see them reach 2018 in fits of childish enthusiasm.
But notes from investors and contradictory rumours are little sustenance for these, the hungriest of gadget fans.