There’s almost a year to go until we get new iPhone 15 models in September 2023, but we’ve been hearing rumors for months now. It’s looking like the iPhone 15 models could get more notable updates than we saw for the iPhone 14, including features many iPhone users have wanted for years.
We’ve rounded up some of the best features coming to the iPhone 15 that we’ve heard so far so MacRumors readers know what to look forward to.
2023 is expected to mark the end of the Lightning port for the iPhone, with Apple transitioning to USB-C. That means you’ll be able to charge your modern Mac, iPad, and iPhone all with the same connector.
Apple isn’t exactly swapping to USB-C in order to make your life more convenient, it’s making the change because the European Union is demanding it. iPhones sold in Europe need to have USB-C ports by 2024, so Apple either needs to make a worldwide design change or create special iPhones for Europe.
Apple has confirmed it will comply with local regulations, and rumors indicate that Apple will make the change in 2023.
Solid State Volume and Power Buttons
Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo recently said that Apple might add solid state volume and power buttons to the iPhone 15 rather than physical buttons, which would be similar to the trackpad on Macs and the iPhone 7’s Home button. The haptic feedback would mimic the feel of a button press on the solid button, replacing the mechanical button press.
Using solid state buttons would likely protect against water ingress and could allow Apple to provide better water resistance. Using haptic feedback for buttons would require Apple to add new Taptic Engines.
Dynamic Island for All Models
Apple introduced the Dynamic Island for the iPhone 14 Pro and Pro Max, while the cheaper iPhone 14 models continue to use a notch. With the iPhone 15, the entire lineup is expected to get the Dynamic Island, so if you want access to the Dynamic Island but don’t want to shell out for a Pro iPhone, wait for the iPhone 15.
We haven’t heard rumors about notable design changes for the iPhone 15 lineup as of yet, so it’s looking like we’re going to get the same sizes. The iPhone 15 and 15 Pro will measure in at 6.1 inches, and the iPhone 15 Plus and Pro Max will be 6.7 inches.
Periscope Lens Technology
We’ve been hearing about Apple’s work on periscope lens technology for years now, and 2023 might be the year that it’s introduced. Periscope lenses, which are already used by some Android smartphone manufacturers, have optical zoom capabilities that exceed the zoom range available with a standard telephoto lens.
With a periscope lens, Apple could offer 5x or even 10x optical zoom, up from 3x in the current iPhone 14 Pro models.
A Name Change?
Bloomberg‘s Mark Gurman has said that Apple might replace the “Pro Max” version of the iPhone 15 with a new high-end “Ultra” model. That would be in line with the Apple Watch Ultra, and it could give Apple an excuse to limit certain features to the highest-end iPhone, like periscope lens technology.
Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has already said that the periscope lens could be limited to the largest iPhone.
3-Nanometer A17 Chip
The iPhone 15 Pro models might be the first to feature a 3-nanometer chip from Apple supplier TSMC. 3nm chip technology is expected to increase processing performance by 10 to 15 percent, while also reducing power consumption by up to 30 percent.
If Apple does use a 3nm A17 chip, it would be a notable improvement over the A16. Only the Pro models got the A16, which is built on a 4nm process, and the A17 is similarly expected to be limited to the iPhone 15 Pro. Standard iPhone 15 models may see an upgrade to the prior-generation A16.
The iPhone 15 Pro models could get 8GB RAM, up from 6GB, perhaps to support new capabilities like periscope lens technology.
For more on the iPhone 15, make sure to bookmark and follow our iPhone 15 roundup, which is updated on a regular basis with all of the rumors that we hear.