Customers take a look at the new iPhone 7 smartphone
Customers take a look at the new iPhone 7 smartphone inside of an Apple Inc. store in New York, U.S., September 16, 2016.REUTERS/Eduardo Munoz

Apple released the iPhone 7 only last month but speculations on its successor, dubbed as the iPhone 8, have started doing the rounds. The next-generation device is expected to have come with a virtual home button, which is not seen in its predecessor.

The Cupertino giant has filled a patent on USPTO that reads: "A capacitive fingerprint sensor, including: a dielectric structure having a contact surface and a sensor surface; an array of capacitive sensing elements held on or near the sensor surface of the dielectric structure; and an electrostatic lens formed within the dielectric structure." The technology will enable Apple to hide Touch ID fingerprint scanner and make a full screen device.

The patent has sparked off speculations that Apple might introduce the technology in its upcoming flagship smartphone, which may come in September 2017.

Details of the upcoming iPhone are not known yet but a report by Business Insider has claimed citing a source from Apple's Herzliya office that the company has started developing the hardware for the iPhone 8 at an office in Israel. It went on to say that the next-generation handset will be very different from the iPhone 7 but didn't give further details.

It may be mentioned that Apple released the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus in September.

The iPhone 7 sports a 4.7-inch (diagonal) LED‑backlit widescreen with Retina HD and 1,334x750p resolution (326 ppi pixel density), powered by a 64-bit architure-based A10 Fusion chip with M10 motion coprocessor, and runs an Apple iOS v10. It also has a 32GB/128GB/256GB internal memory, a 2GB RAM, a 12MP main camera with f/1.8 aperture, digital zoon (up to 5x), Optical image Stabilisation, six-element lens, and Quad-LED True Tone flash, a 7MP front-snapper with ƒ/2.2 aperture and auto image stabilisation, and a 1,960mAh battery.

The iPhone 7 Plus features a 5.5-inch (diagonal) LED‑backlit widescreen with Retina HD and 1,080x1920p resolution (401 ppi pixel density), a 64-bit architure-based A10 Fusion chip with M10 motion coprocessor, an iOS v10, a 32GB/128GB/256GB storage, and a 3GB RAM. The device also has a dual 12MP main camera (ƒ/1.8 aperture) with wide-angle field of view + telephoto camera (ƒ/1.9 aperture), Optical zoom at 2x, digital zoom up to 10x, OIS, six-element lens and Quad-LED True Tone flash, a 7MP front-snapper with ƒ/2.2 aperture, and a 2,900mAh battery.