Apple just recently released the iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 and 14 Pro models, but we’ve been hearing rumors about the iPhone 15 series since before the new iPhones even came out.
The iPhone 15 is about a year away, so nothing is set in stone yet, but USB-C, periscope camera technology, and an Apple-designed modem chip have been suggested. This roundup covers everything that we’ve heard about the iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Pro so far, but keep in mind that it’s early in the development cycle and Apple’s plans could change.
Is iPhone 15 Ultra Coming?
According to Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman, Apple might potentially replace the “Pro Max” version of the iPhone 15 with a new “Ultra” model. Apple 2022 introduces the Apple Watch Ultra, and it has also used the “Ultra” naming the highest-end of the M1.
It stands for a reason that the highest-end iPhone available, often the “Pro Max”. could be renamed the iPhone 15 Ultra.
Rumors suggest that the iPhone 15 series will look similar to the iPhone 14 models, but the pill-and-hole cutouts will extend to the entire lineup. That means all iPhone 15 models would have no notch. Instead, they will adopt the Dynamic Island which was introduced in the 14 Pro models.
As there are no major design updates expected, Apple will likely continue to offer four models: The 6.1-inch iPhone 15, the 6.1-inch iPhone 15 Pro, the 6.7-inch iPhone 15 Max, and the 6.7-inch iPhone 15 Pro Max/ Ultra. The “pro” models will have higher-end features and will be more expensive, while the standard iPhone 15 models will be cheaper.
No Touch ID
Though there have been rumors ongoing suggesting that Apple has considered bringing Touch ID back to its flagship models using an under-display sensor solution, the iPhone 15 models are not expected to include Touch ID and will continue only with the Face ID.
Apple is also working on an under-display Face ID feature, but it won’t be ready until 2025. Instead, in 2023, the iPhone 15 will continue with the Dynamic Island feature, which Apple could expand to all the upcoming models instead of just providing it to the pro models.
USB- Type C
One of the biggest updates that are Apple is considering swapping the Lightning Port on the iPhone 15 models for a USC-C type port, which would allow it to conform with European regulations that are in the process of being passed. These regulations would require Apple to produce iPhones with USB-C type ports in Europe, so Apple either needs to make a worldwide design that swap or develop special iPhones for the sale in Europe.
Reliable sources that include Bloomberg‘s Mark Gurman and Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo have said that Apple is going to make the swap, so this is a strong possibility at the current time. Of course, Apple’s plans could change, later.
Periscope Lens Technology
There have been multiple rumors about Apple’s work on “periscope” telephoto lens technology, and this type of lens could be introduced in the 2023 iPhones, likely in the iPhone 15 Pro models. According to Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, only the larger iPhone 15 Pro Max is going to get the periscope camera lens, so it may be limited to the highest-end and most expensive model.
Periscope lens technology offers optical zoom capabilities that surpass those possible with a standard telephoto lens, allowing for 5x or even 10x optical zoom. With a periscope lens, the iPhone’s zoom capabilities would be significantly enhanced as the current Pro models are limited to 3x zoom.
Apple competitor Samsung has come out with smartphones that use periscope lens technology that enables 4x to 10x optical zoom and up to 100x digital zoom.
Apple-Designed Modem Chips?
Apple will use Qualcomm’s 5G modem chips for the 2023 iPhone 15 lineup, as it has done since 5G iPhones were introduced. Rumors were suggesting that Apple could use its in-house modem chips as soon as 2023, but the technology is not yet ready.
Apple is working to overcome heat-related issues with the modem chips that it is creating, and the Apple-designed modem chips will not be ready for use in iPhones until at least 2024.
The iPhone 15 models could be the first to feature an A-series chip built on Apple supplier TSMC’s next-generation 3-nanometer node. 3nm chip technology is expected to increase processing performance by 10 to 15 percent, while also reducing power consumption by up to 30 percent.
Apple chip supplier TSMC is rumored to be scaling back on plans for 3-nanometer chips after losing an order from Intel. It is not clear if the disruption will impact Apple’s 3nm chip production, but TSMC is producing the 3nm A17 chips expected to be used in the iPhone 15 models.
Is there any upgrade in RAM?
The iPhone 15 pro models could feature an increased 8GB of RAM, according to Taiwanese research firm TrendForce. Currently, iPhone 14 Pro models offer 6GB of RAM.
What about the release dates?
The iPhone 15 models will likely be released in September 2023 if Apple follows its traditional September launch timeline.
The 2023 iPhone 15 models are expected to feature USB-C instead of Lightning, new camera technology, an Apple-designed modem chip, and more.
Apple to Continue Using Qualcomm Modem Chips for 2023 iPhone 15 Models
Qualcomm in November 2021 said that it expected to supply 20 percent of Apple's modem chips in 2023, prompting a potential shift to Apple's own modem chips. Apple has been working to cut down on its reliance on Qualcomm by developing its own modem technology in-house, but it does not appear that Apple's chips will be ready for a 2023 launch. Gurman's report echoes information that we previously heard from Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo. Kuo said in June 2022 that Apple's work on a 5G modem chip "failed", and that Qualcomm would remain Apple's modem supplier for the 2023 iPhone lineup. Kuo said that development on the chip stalled, but the work is ultimately continuing. Apple is expected to create its own modem chip, but it will take more time for work to be completed and satisfactory for use in iPhones and other devices. Apple launched a legal battle against Qualcomm in 2017, accusing Qualcomm of unfairly collecting royalties for technologies it had nothing to do with. Apple wanted to transition away from Qualcomm with the shift to 5G to stop paying Qualcomm's fees and instead use Intel technology, but Intel was not able to manufacture 5G chips that met Apple's standards. Apple was forced to settle its lawsuit with Qualcomm and has since used Qualcomm 5G modem chips for the iPhone and iPad lineups. Apple has been working on its own modem chip since then, and even purchased Intel's modem chip business to get a head start. Initial rumors pinpointed 2023 as the year Apple would be ready to transition, but it looks like it will take a bit longer for Apple to end its modem deals with Qualcomm. Want to know about Top New Features in macOS Ventura Also, iPhone 14 Pro Max