The iPhone 15 lineup likely won’t arrive until fall 2023, but there are plenty of questions about what to expect from Apple’s next-generation phone. Will the iPhone 15 have a USB-C port?? Will it even be called “iPhone 15”? No one outside of Apple knows for sure, but the rumors are sure to fuel our curiosity as Apple hosts its next iPhone event. Here are some of the biggest and most credible rumors we’ve seen so far to paint a picture of what we might see from the iPhone 15.
iPhone 15 design: Hello USB-C, goodbye Lightning
It’s been rumored for years, but in 2023, the switch from Lightning Port to USB-C port could finally happen. This is likely due to pressure from the European Union, which has been pushing for a common charging standard for years. In 2022, the bloc managed to pass legislation requiring Apple to equip its iPhones with USB-C ports by 2024 if it wants to sell them in the EU. The question is whether Apple will switch to USB-C all iPhone models or only those sold in the EU. Apple already modifies iPhone models regionally, as it did with the iPhone 14: The US version has an electronic SIM card, while other variants retain the SIM card slot. However, there are good reasons to switch all iPhones to USB-C going forward, according to Avi Greengart, an analyst at Techsponential.
“…There are bigger ecosystem, security and accessory considerations with the power/data connector, so I think it’s more likely that Apple will move all iPhones [globally] to USB-C in the iPhone 16 timeframe to meet European regulations,” he told CNET in an email.
iPhone 15 design: Dynamic Island expands to all models
Apple will likely continue to sell four iPhone models with the iPhone 15 lineup. Rumors point to a broadly similar design across the board, except that the iPhone 14 Pro’s shape-shifting cutout, known as the Dynamic Island, is set to make its way to all models .
This rumor comes from display analyst Ross Young, who also said in September a tweet that he doesn’t expect the base iPhone 15 models to have a higher refresh rate like Apple’s Pro iPhone because the supply chain can’t support it.
iPhone 15: Solid-state buttons come to iPhone 15 Pro models
Prominent Apple watcher Ming-Chi Kuo, an analyst at TF International Securities, expects Apple to further differentiate its base and Pro models in the coming years. One way he expects this to happen is by giving the iPhone 15 Pro models solid-state volume and power buttons instead of the standard keys found on today’s devices, he wrote in a tweet in October.
The solid-state buttons, which Kuo says will be similar to the home button on the iPhone SE and iPhone 7, mimic the feeling of pressing a button using haptic feedback. The obvious advantage of this type of buttons is that they prevent water from entering.
iPhone 15 Power: Increased RAM for professional models
According to Taiwanese research firm TrendForce, the Pro models of the iPhone 15 range will receive a RAM increase to 8GB from 6GB to complement the expected A17 Bionic chipset. Base models will continue to get 6GB of RAM, according to TrendForce. This rumor is also apparently supported by a research report from Haitong International Securities analyst Jeff Pu, according to a MacRumors article that cites Pu’s report.
iPhone 15 camera: A periscope-style telephoto lens arrives
Another Kuo prediction is making the rounds, but this time it’s about the iPhone 15 camera. The analyst predicts that the iPhone 15 Pro Max will get a periscope-style telephoto lens. This kind of telephoto lens allows for higher levels of optical zoom, with Kuo predicting that 6x optical zoom could appear in the iPhone 15 Pro Max. The iPhone 14 Pro Max’s optical zoom is limited to 3x, which lags behind competitors like the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra’s 10x optical zoom.
iPhone 15 Price: Up, Up and Away?
Prices have risen dramatically since the original iPhone came out in 2007. And it could happen again in 2023 with the iPhone 15, but not in the way you think. The price of the regular iPhone 15 is currently expected to remain the same, according to analysts who previously spoke to CNET.
However, the upper end of the price range could be raised if rumors of a luxury iPhone 15 Ultra turn out to be true. The rumored Ultra model could potentially replace the iPhone 15 Pro Max next year, Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman writes. This is consistent with Kuo’s predictions, which is waiting for Apple to further differentiate between the iPhone Pro and iPhone Pro Max models. US prices currently range from $829 for the base model iPhone 14 (128GB) to $1,599 for the top-of-the-line iPhone 14 Pro Max with 1TB of storage.
iPhone 15: Launch and Release Timeline
Apple holds its annual iPhone event in September almost every year, so we’d expect the timeline to remain the same for the iPhone 15. The new iPhones are usually released soon after, usually Friday of the following week. Sometimes Apple will change the release dates of specific models, especially when it introduces a new design or size. So it’s possible that the iPhone 15 lineup will have more than one release date.
Here’s what we know:
- Apple tends to hold its events on Tuesdays or Wednesdays. Apple’s iPhone 14 event was held on Wednesday, September 7, while the iPhone 13 event was held on Tuesday, September 14.
- iPhone release dates are usually a week and a half after Apple’s announcements.
- Generally, new iPhones are released on Fridays, around the third week of September. For the iPhone 13, pre-orders began on September 17 and the phones went on sale on September 24.
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