The conveyor belts haven’t even finished delivering components to the right hands, and we’re already talking about what to expect from Apple’s iPhone 15. The rumors started circulating right after the launch of the iPhone 14/14 Pro, and they’ve only gotten louder and louder persistently in recent months.
What’s next for the iPhone? A bit more of the same, but with a new charging standard. The iPhone 14/14 Pro was a solid release, so Apple is likely to improve what works with the current flagship. The camera system and the Apple-made processor that fuels the phone from the inside are likely to take a hit. The Dynamic Island is also likely to remain, although the buttons on the iPhone 15 may be different from what you’re used to. Oh, and start putting the Lightning cables in your personal museum; if you decide to upgrade later this year, replace them with USB-C cables: Apple certified.
The iPhone 15 comes in four models
We’re still determining when exactly the new iPhone family will debut, or if any of the leaks in the rounds have been confirmed. But according to Bloomberg, there will be at least four models to choose from. To sell a new “Ultra” moniker for its highest-end model, Apple may do things a little differently this year with the classification of each model. The 6.1-inch iPhone 15 will also reportedly come in a 6.7-inch iPhone 15 Plus variant, while the 6.1-inch iPhone 15 Pro is rumored to come with a 6.7-inch “Pro Ultra” variant. The Ultra supposedly comes packed with premium enhancements, like a titanium-covered chassis that looks like it Apple Watch Ultra.
Although Apple does not usually share memory configurations, there may be a difference in RAM between the four models. In a recent report, Taiwanese supply chain research firm, TrendForce, wrote, claims that Apple has increased the RAM order on iPhone 15 Pro. Apple can increase the RAM from 6GB to 8GB on the Pro/Ultra model. The iPhone 15/15 Plus will likely stick to 6GB.
What will the iPhone 15 look like?
Expect more of the same. The design language Apple has put out in recent generations has largely remained unchanged. And it definitely won’t be a notch: every model of the iPhone 15 is expected to have one Dynamic island, which is believable considering that Apple already has room for this part of the design on the taller iPhone 14s. At least it will put all the little ones Dynamic island apps and available abilities to good use.
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iPhone 15 can have solid-state buttons on the page instead of mechanical. Each button will act as a mini trackpad, like the Home button on the current one iPhone SE. iPhone 15 can use Taptic Engines that provide haptic feedback when you touch the power and volume buttons. It will also help Apple market the iPhone 15 as more durable than its predecessors.
iPhone 15 will have USB-C
Everyone is talking about it: iPhone 15 will have USB-C. Apple is following EU law, which said the company had to adopt USB-C on its iPhone line by 2024. Several leaks since the October ruling pointed to this as an inevitability.
Of course, this situation has a warning. We’ve also heard that Apple will encourage USB-C cables to go through the MFi program, originally named that way to indicate that accessories were “made for iPod.” That doesn’t mean you won’t be able to share USB-C cables with Android-loving friends and family, but there will likely be a limit to charging and data transfer speeds on non-MFi cables due to this certification program.
Special colors for iPhone 15
Let’s take a break to talk about colors. 9to5Mac has the lead on the iPhone 15 color palette – you can check out rendered swatches at the link. Apple may be planning a darker red option for the iPhone 15 Pro/Ultra to join the dark purple iPhone 14 Pro Max. It could also go super pastel and adopt baby blue and pink variants, not unlike the periwinkle blue version of the iPhone 14.
9to5Mac’s source warned that these particular colors could change once the iPhone 15 goes into full production mode. But it’s easy to see the pattern based on the color offerings of the iPhone 13 and iPhone 14 series.
A periscope camera for the iPhone 15
Want to take better photos even if your hand is shaking? The iPhone 15 Pro Max (or Ultra?) could help by adding a periscope-style rear camera, according to MacRumors. This rumor has been quiet since last summer, when the famous player Ming-Chi Kuo wrote about the possibility of a periscope lens coming to the largest variants of the iPhone 15, with the smaller ones stuck with a regular telephoto lens for optical zoom.
The periscope camera system is slightly more forgiving of physical movement, although it also allows you to zoom in further, producing less of the “digital noise” in the final product. Samsung’s Galaxy S22/S23 Ultra has similar hardware in its tertiary 10MP camera lens with 10x zoom to help it stabilize distant images.
Apple’s A17 Bionic Chip is next – right?
We expect Apple to grace us with the A17 Bionic in the iPhone 15 Pro/Pro Ultra/Pro Max (seriously, I don’t know what to call it). But instead of focusing on boosting performance—the A16 Bionic still outperforms the latest Android chips in synthetic benchmarks—Apple is likely to tweak battery life and power efficiency.
The iPhone 15 Pro’s processor could be Apple’s first 3nm processor, which Bloomberg reportedly put into production just after Christmas last year. If this turns out to be accurate, it means that Apple will have beaten Android’s chipmakers at 3nm.