September is a month of great significance for mobile enthusiasts, especially apple fans, as it typically marks the unveiling of the latest iPhone models. As we find ourselves this month, the anticipation is building for the imminent introduction of the iPhone 15.
The current lineup, including the iPhone 14, iPhone 14 Plus, iPhone 14 Pro, and iPhone 14 Pro Max, is on the verge of being succeeded. We've gained significant insights into the iPhone 15 thanks to the multitude of leaks and rumors that have surfaced throughout the year, which we'll delve into further in this post. Keep in mind that the details provided are from trustworthy insiders and reporters who gained popularity for doing so in the past few years.
How many models are we expecting?
In 2022, Apple introduced two distinct iPhone lineups within the same generation: the iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Plus. As well as the iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max. Unless there's a surprise in store, 2023 will bring us four iPhone models in two size categories.
- iPhone 15: This model features a 6.1-inch diagonal display, replacing the current iPhone 14. It serves as the standard model and is expected to be the most budget-friendly option in the lineup.
- iPhone 15 Plus: With a 6.7-inch diagonal screen, this model succeeds the iPhone 14 Plus. Positioned as the intermediate choice, it caters to those seeking a larger iPhone without necessarily opting for the highest-end variant.
- iPhone 15 Pro: Sporting a 6.1-inch diagonal display, this model takes over from the iPhone 14 Pro. Unlike the previous case, it's designed for users looking for a compact iPhone that doesn't compromise on power and camera capabilities.
- iPhone 15 Pro Max: Featuring a 6.7-inch diagonal screen, this will be the most advanced model in Apple‘s lineup for 2023 and much of 2024, until the next-generation iPhone 16 arrives.
It's worth noting that there were initial speculations about an iPhone 15 Ultra to replace the ‘Pro Max'. However, later reports, including those from reputable leaker Mark Gurman, suggest that any such Ultra model is now expected in 2024 and will coexist with the ‘Pro Max' rather than replace it. Therefore, it won't impact the iPhone 15 series.
Additionally, there have been leaks hinting at design changes for the ‘Pro' models, potentially resulting in larger screen diagonals. This information aligns with various leaks. Including images of screen protectors showing reduced bezels, which have gradually become common knowledge over the months.
What about the design?
Given the early stage of leaks, it's premature to label any theory as entirely reliable at this point. Nevertheless, all speculations are centered around a design shift in the device's edges compared to previous generations. This could mean bidding farewell to the flat sides, though perhaps not entirely.
In the initial leaked renders of the iPhone 15 Pro, as well as in subsequent realistic images, there is a noticeable departure from the completely flat edges. They appear to maintain a certain degree of straightness while featuring a subtle curve from the glass of the screen towards the sides. This aesthetic bears resemblance to models like the iPhone 5c from its era. Moreover, there are indications of new color options for the standard iPhone models. And even the iPhone 15 Pro is rumored to bring back the color blue.
An early leak from LeaksApplePro suggests that the ‘Pro' version of the iPhone 15, specifically the iPhone 15 Pro Max, may introduce a new construction material – titanium. This material is expected to enhance durability, similar to what we've seen with the Apple Watch Ultra.
In fact, more rumors and leaks have gradually emerged. Hinting at the possibility of a new color called Titan Grey, which could replace the previous golden color in the latest iPhone Pro models. It remains to be seen if this new color option will also introduce the highly anticipated material change akin to the Apple Watch Ultra.
In terms of screens, as mentioned earlier, it's anticipated that the iPhone 15 will continue to offer OLED panels in sizes of 6.1 and 6.7 inches. The ‘Pro' models are likely to maintain the 120 Hz refresh rate, which was first introduced with the iPhone 13 Pro. However, it would be unusual if the standard and ‘Plus' models still stick with a 60 Hz refresh rate three years later without improvement.
Notably, the iPhone 14 Pro and 14 Pro Max introduced the dynamic island as a replacement for the notch. In the case of the iPhone 15, it's expected that the ‘Pro' models will continue to feature it, but the exciting development would be the inclusion of this Dynamic Island in the iPhone 15 and 15 Plus models as well. This move would ultimately bid farewell to the notch that made its debut with the iPhone X.
Specs and camera features
Renowned Asian analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has already given us a heads-up about the distinctions we can anticipate in the iPhone 15 lineup. Building upon the noticeable differences we saw in terms of processors, cameras, and screens in the iPhone 14 range, this year's models could potentially feature variations even between the ‘Pro' and ‘Pro Max' variants. And, of course, this is in addition to the differences in battery size, which is one of the few factors currently distinguishing them.
One aspect that appears certain is the continued use of different microprocessors across the models. The A16 Bionic chip, which made its debut with the iPhone 14 Pro and Pro Max, might find its way into the standard iPhone 15. Meanwhile, the iPhone 15 Pro and 15 Pro Max are rumored to adopt the unreleased A17 Bionic, with improved manufacturing processes making the leap to 3 nm. Furthermore, there's speculation about the introduction of unprecedented RAM capacity, potentially reaching 8 GB, although some sources suggest it might stay at 6 GB.
Leaker @URedditor on Twitter has shared some specific details:
- 6-core CPU
- 6-core GPU
- 3.70 GHz
- 6 GB LPDDR5 DRAM
- TSCM 3 nm process
Mark Gurman predicts the arrival of a USB-C port in this generation, partly influenced by new European Union regulations mandating a single connector by 2024. However, it's worth noting that other Apple developments, such as the long-anticipated portless iPhone that's been rumored since 2020, cannot be ruled out.
Regarding USB-C, it's important to mention that it might not be the same for ‘Pro' and standard models. In the high-end devices, it's expected to support the USB 3 standard, offering significantly faster transfer speeds than Lightning, while the standard and ‘Plus' models may feature a basic USB-C that closely matches Lightning in terms of speed.
Recent leaks, including information from leaker Majin Bu, suggest that the iPhone 15's cable could deliver a speed of 480 Mbps, aligning with USB 2.0 and Lightning. The iPhone 15 Pro, on the other hand, might come with a Thunderbolt 3 cable offering transfer speeds of up to 40 Gbps. Additionally, these cables are rumored to measure 1.6 meters (slightly longer than the current ones), and they might not require MFi (Made for iPhone) certification.
Even the design of the cables could see attention to detail. With rumors suggesting braided cables in colors matching the chosen iPhone.
Although there might be subtle design changes in the new iPhone, particularly in the form factor, which could partially move away from straight edges according to leaks, one significant alteration expected in the iPhone 15 has been debunked. Earlier speculations about replacing physical buttons with haptic buttons, capable of working in a low-power mode even when the phone is off, have been ruled out for logistical reasons.
Regarding the mute switch, while it remains physical, a leaked CAD image hints at a shift towards a single button that can perform various quick actions. In iOS 17 beta code, some of these functions have been hinted at, including changing the sound mode, accessibility options, app opening, flashlight activation, concentration mode activation, voice memo creation, or running a shortcut.
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Another area of improvement expected is in the cameras, primarily for the ‘Pro' and ‘Pro Max' models. There have been longstanding rumors about the introduction of a periscopic lens. It was previously speculated for the iPhone 14 but didn't materialize. Now, it's suggested that the ‘Max' model of the iPhone 15 could feature this lens. Offering up to six times optical zoom.
For the standard models, there's speculation that the iPhone 15 and 15 Plus might upgrade to 48-megapixel cameras. Following in the footsteps of the 2022 ‘Pro' versions. However, there are conflicting reports, with some sources suggesting they will stick with 12 megapixels.
One thing that we can confidently expect is the introduction of a new operating system. Although it won't be exclusive to the iPhone 15. iOS 17 is anticipated to make its way to previous-generation devices as well. Serving as the foundational operating system for these '15' models.
Lastly, another highly rumored improvement is an upgrade to the WiFi modem. Leaks suggest that all four models in the iPhone 15 lineup will feature WiFi 6E. It's a necessary enhancement considering that the 2023 MacBook and iPad Pro with M2 SoC have already implemented this standard.
What about the battery ?
The battery specifications for each new iPhone iteration are always shrouded in mystery. Analysts armed with specialized tools work diligently to unearth these details. However, it's worth noting that this is an area where leaks and rumors tend to be less accurate. Although information still trickles out. Overall, we expect the iPhone 15 models to have a better battery life than their predecessors.
With that caveat in mind, some leaks have provided specific battery capacity figures for the iPhone 15, and they are as follows:
- iPhone 15: 3,877 mAh (an increase of 598 mAh compared to the iPhone 14)
- iPhone 15 Plus: 4,912 mAh (an increase of 587 mAh compared to the iPhone 14 Plus)
- iPhone 15 Pro: 3,650 mAh (an increase of 450 mAh compared to the iPhone 14 Pro)
- iPhone 15 Pro Max: 4,852 mAh (an increase of 529 mAh compared to the iPhone 14 Pro Max)
There have also been discussions about the potential for enhanced fast charging capabilities. However, conflicting information has emerged, with estimates ranging from 35 to 40 watts. Initially, there were talks of a maximum cable charging power of 40 watts and wireless MagSafe charging at 20 watts. Subsequently, another leak suggested a slightly lower figure of 35 watts.
When it will be unveiled?
Barring any unexpected surprises, the introduction of the iPhone 15 is slated for September. This aligns with Apple's historical release patterns.
However, there is some conflicting information regarding the exact date. Some sources suggest the 12th, while others lean towards the 13th. Nevertheless, it's a safe bet that it will fall within the mid-September timeframe.
Based on previous years, the unveiling is expected to occur around September 12th or 13th. In fact, a recent leak from 9to5Mac points specifically to September 13th, which falls on a Wednesday.
Notably, preparations for the event where the iPhone 15 will be revealed are already underway. Despite initial rumors pointing to the 12th, it seems increasingly likely that it will indeed take place on either the 12th or the 13th.
When it will be released?
Based on historical patterns and the information discussed earlier, it's expected that the iPhone 15 will be available for pre-order during the same week as its unveiling, most likely on a Friday. Given this, reservations could potentially open on September 15.
Consequently, the market release date is anticipated to be just one week later, on September 22. Esteemed sources like Mark Gurman from Bloomberg have also corroborated this date. It's worth noting that sometimes, in previous releases, certain models have launched at different times. However, as of now, there's no information suggesting any delays for any of the iPhone 15 models.
Nevertheless, there's a possibility that the most advanced model, the iPhone 15 Pro Max, may face a slight delay of a few weeks. According to the latest rumors, Sony and Apple are encountering production challenges related to the periscopic camera for this specific model. If it's not ready for the initial launch, the iPhone 15 Pro Max could arrive three to four weeks later. This wouldn't be unprecedented, as similar staggered releases have occurred in previous iPhone generations. Such as the iPhone 14 Plus last year. And the iPhone 12 Mini and iPhone 12 Pro Max in the past.
What about the pricing?
Pricing for the iPhone 15 is another aspect shrouded in anticipation each year. In the 2022 models, we witnessed a price increase for the first time in five years, at least in Europe. Unless inflation subsides, it's unlikely that we'll see prices lower than these current figures. Here are the expected prices in the US.
- iPhone 15: Starting at $799
- iPhone 15 Plus: Starting at $899
- iPhone 15 Pro: Starting at $9999
- iPhone 15 Pro Max: Starting at $1099
It's worth noting that some experts predict further price increases, especially in the United States. Additionally, given the relatively close exchange rates between the euro and the dollar, Europe might also experience price adjustments upwards.
Typically, Apple keeps its pricing details closely guarded until the very day of the product's unveiling. While we may gain a clearer picture of Apple's pricing strategy in the weeks leading up to the launch, determining the exact prices remains a complex challenge.
What's new in the software?
in the WWDC 2023 conference, details about iOS 17 have emerged. Indicating that it's more of an evolutionary step rather than a revolutionary overhaul. This aligns with prior expectations. However, it's worth noting that some of the announced features may not be available immediately with the initial release but could roll out in subsequent updates. Additionally, Apple might unveil further enhancements in intermediate versions.
New Contact Cards
iOS 17 introduces enhanced customization options for contact cards, whether it's your own or that of a contact. You can now set a photo with a depth effect or a Memoji. And you have the ability to customize the name with different fonts, thicknesses, and colors. When someone calls you, their contact card will display in full-screen glory.
A new method for sharing contacts between iPhones has been introduced via these revamped contact cards. The process is surprisingly simple. Just bring the top of your iPhone close to another iPhone to enable the transfer through NFC, accompanied by an appealing animation.
The classic ‘AirDrop' feature receives notable improvements in iOS 17. Not only has the speed been boosted, but the steps required for sharing files have also been streamlined. Now, you can send the same files as before without manually selecting the devices. Just approach another device and tap the screen to initiate the transfer.
iOS 17 brings a welcome change to widgets, allowing you to perform actions directly from them. Eliminating the need to open the corresponding app. This functionality extends to native apps like Reminders and Music. Enabling you to complete tasks and control playback, among other things, right from the widget itself.
Other Noteworthy Features Include:
- Offline maps in Apple Maps
- The introduction of a new app called ‘Diary'
- The addition of an ‘At Sleep' mode for the bedside table
- A new method for creating stickers
- The integration of video messages into FaceTime
- The inclusion of video effects in FaceTime
- Voicemail message transcriptions
- New camera shortcuts through the ‘Shortcuts' app
These updates promise to enhance the overall iOS experience and provide users with greater convenience and functionality in various aspects of their daily interactions with their devices.