What you need to know:
- iPhone 14 series expected launch date:
- Event date: 6 or 13 September
- Pre-orders: 9 or 16 September
- Shipping: 30 September onwards
- Apple will release four iPhones this year: iPhone 14, iPhone 14 Max, iPhone 14 Pro, and iPhone 14 Pro Max
- We expect the iPhone 14 Pro to feature a pill shaped punch hole display, A16 Bionic SoC, 48MP camera sensor and many more upgrades.
Like every year, leaks and rumors about the upcoming iPhone have started surfacing the internet, and tech enthusiasts like you and I are excited to see what Apple offers.
Unfortunately, these leaks do not point out an iPhone 14 Flip. Moreover, in my opinion, Apple is not going to dive into the foldable space right now, at least with the iPhone. However, there are talks about a foldable MacBook. The foldable form factor hasn’t matured yet, so the iPhone 14 series will continue with a unibody design.
However, I am anticipating a new, or at least a refreshed design. Both at the front and the back of the device. Let’s discuss the design and hardware of the iPhone 14 series in more detail.
Latest rumors about the iPhone 14 (26 July 2022)
iPhone 14 release date
Before we start, let me address that Apple will announce the iPhone 14 series in September as it has done so traditionally. Here’re the anticipated dates going by Apple’s usual pattern:
- Event date: 6 or 13 September
- Pre-orders: 9 or 16 September
- Shipping: 30 September onwards
These are speculated dates as previous Apple events have followed the same timeline. Considering COVID has subsided, manufacturing and exporting these iPhones should not be impacted. Hopefully, there will be no delays this year, and the event will happen at the anticipated time.
Four new iPhone 14
The Apple iPhone 12 mini was Apple’s way of reintroducing a compact form factor with top-of-the-line specifications. However, the iPhone 12 mini and its successor, the iPhone 13 mini, have had lackluster sales figures, indicating that not many users see the point of a compact iPhone in the given price range.
Some reports suggest the mini iPhone will not make a reappearance this year with the iPhone 14 models. So, how would there be four new iPhones this year?
Well, if small phones aren’t selling well but larger phones are, the logical step would be to provide more options in larger sizes, which is what Apple might exactly do.
Rumors suggest that Apple will launch iPhone 14 and the iPhone 14 Pro at the regular 6.1-inch display size. But will also unveil the iPhone 14 Max alongside the iPhone 14 Pro Max at a 6.7-inch display size. The 14 Max will have a few differentiating factors, with the display being one of them. Let’s dive deeper into it!
iPhone 14 design and display
Apple reintroduced the legendary boxy design of the iPhone 4 with the iPhone 12 series. The iPhone 13 also has the same design with a few minor tweaks like a smaller notch and diagonal rear camera setup. And as usual, several other Android manufacturers have taken inspiration and introduced the same design to their devices.
Hence, it feels like Apple is selling nostalgia by reintroducing the old boxy design. And now, if Apple increases the device’s thickness and incorporates the cameras in the device’s body, nostalgia will hit like a truck.
Sadly, the renders revealed by 91mobiles point out that the iPhone 14 series, at least the 14 and 14 Max, will have the same design as the iPhone 13. There are possible changes to the display front with the notch, etc., (more on that later), but the overall design will be one we are already familiar with.
This year, the idea of Apple launching four new iPhones seems to grow closer with each passing day. At least on the back of the device, the design language seems very similar to that of its predecessor. A picture of molds for the upcoming iPhone cases has been leaked on Weibo.
Images shared on Weibo of ultra-slim cases for the iPhone 14 series further confirm our expectations of the iPhone 14’s design. These images strengthen the rumor of Apple launching four new iPhone’s this year: iPhone 14, iPhone 14 Plus, iPhone 14 Pro, and the iPhone 14 Pro Max. We cannot confidently say what moniker the 6.7-inch iPhone 14 will launch.
When we look at the iPhone from the 11 series, the base iPhones always come in funkier colors than their Pro counterparts. Because the Pro models are intended for professional use, Apple ensures that the Pro models are available in simple yet elegant colors.
Rumors suggest that the iPhone 14 will come in a new purple shade that shifts colors according to the light. The two conclusions I can draw from this information are that it’ll be similar to the Pro iPhones available today or a GRADIENT BACK. What are your thoughts about gradient backs, and is Apple finally implementing gradient backs on its iPhones?
Hole punch display on the iPhone 14 Pro
Essential’s PH1 smartphone introduced the concept of the notch, and Apple implemented it the right way and popularized it to an extent where it became a norm in the smartphone market. All smartphone manufacturers other than Samsung implemented the notch and moved away from it quickly, leaving Apple the only company to mass-produce phones with notches.
However, recent reports shine a light on how Apple might introduce a hole-punch display. Some rumors also suggest implementing a pill-shaped hole-punch display, at least with the Pro models housing the hardware needed for Face ID.
Ross Young, CEO of Display Chain Supply Consultants, tweeted that we can expect a hole punch and a pill-shaped cutout in the iPhone 14 series.
Recently, the front display panels of the iPhone 14 series were leaked on Weibo and shared by SaranByte on Twitter. These images back the rumors of non-pro models housing the notch and Pro models featuring a punch hole and pill camera setup. The bezels are also slimmer.
A pill-shaped cutout will just take away from the overall design aesthetic Apple has maintained over the years, and so this becoming a reality seems like a far-fetched dream to me. But that’s just me. Apple might implement this technology to continue providing Face ID and house all its sensors!
While Face ID is the most secure facial recognition hardware in the smartphone world today, it has its flaws. Look at the tweet below, and follow the thread to know more.
If not Face ID, then what? Wait, did you actually forget about Touch ID? In this era where in-display fingerprint scanners are booming and are more convenient as many people still wear masks, it seems like the right time for Apple to reintroduce Touch ID.
But Apple introduced the ability to unlock the Face ID-enabled iPhones while wearing masks with the iOS 15.4 update our hopes of Touch ID making a comeback are dwindling.
ProMotion on all iterations?
ProMotion is the naming scheme Apple uses for its 120Hz Adaptive refresh rate panel. It was first introduced with the 2017 iPad Pro and finally made its way to the iPhone in 2021 with the introduction of the iPhone 13 Pro and 13 Pro Max.
Since the panel supports an adaptive refresh rate, it also contributes to the amazing battery life the iPhone 13 Pro is hailed for.
But the standard iPhones did not get a ProMotion display. Hopefully, with iPhone 14, we can expect all models to come with a ProMotion display. An adaptive refresh rate panel will lead to a smoother user interface and provide better battery life.
Further, the iPhone 13 Pro Max has been acclaimed time and again to be the battery king, and I can only wonder what tricks Apple has up its sleeves to provide an upgrade in battery life with the iPhone 14 series.
iPhone cameras are renowned for their consistency. While the iPhone 13 Pro has one of the best smartphone cameras, certain aspects need an upgrade.
How about a 48MP sensor?
From the launch of the iPhone X, all iPhones look quite similar, at least from the front. The same can also be said for the megapixel count of the iPhone cameras. In fact, from the iPhone 6S right until the recently launched iPhone 13 Pro Max, the megapixel count is 12MP. Here’s a chart curated by MKBHD that points this out.
Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo believes that iPhone 14 will come with an upgraded 48MP sensor. While the sensor will be a 48MP sensor, it’ll shoot images in 12MP by implementing Pixel Binning technology allowing 4 pixels to merge and act as one individual sensor, reducing the image size to 12MP and letting in more light.
One aspect where the 48MP sensor will be a worthy upgrade is in terms of video. While the iPhone has the best video recording capabilities compared to any other smartphone that a consumer can buy, it still does not provide 8K video recording capabilities.
A 12MP sensor can shoot videos maximum in 4K resolution; to shoot videos in 8K resolution, at least a 33.2MP sensor is needed. Hence, a 48MP sensor does solve this issue and allows 8K recording.
The images above indicate that the camera module sizes have increased. And if Apple has increased the camera module sizes, it mostly is because of the larger sensors. The images of the ultra-slim cases for the iPhone 14 models further reinforce the presence of upgraded camera sensors.
Will the iPhone 14 Pro get a Periscope lens?
I compared the Samsung S22 Ultra and iPhone 13 Pro Max cameras. Compared to some Android competitors, the current iPhone falls back by a mile in zooming capabilities. And this is because they lose out on a periscope lens providing optical zooming capabilities to smartphones.
There are no signs indicating that iPhone 14 will feature a periscope lens. We might have to wait at least up to 2023 to see a periscope lens in the iPhone.
A16 Bionic chip
Apple has been refreshing the SoC for iPhone with every iteration. However, this time around, there is a possibility that the iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Max will have the same old yet powerful A15 Bionic SoC based on a 5nm process.
The iPhone 14 Pro/14 Pro Max will come with an A16 Bionic SoC based on the third generation of the same 5nm process known as N4P. The A15 Bionic is powerful, beating all the other mobile SoCs. I cannot fathom the power the A16 Bionic will offer and if a normal user will ever be able to push this SoC to its limits.
N4P processors will have around a 25-30% increase in GPU performance, around 15% CPU performance, and a leap of 50% in terms of memory bandwidth. An increase of 50% in memory bandwidth is made possible, all thanks to the DDR5 RAM being used in the iPhone 14 Pros.
Different SoC’s for the iPhone 14 lineup will highly contribute to distinguishing who the device is intended for. The A13 Bionic launched with the iPhone 11 can beat the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 in benchmark scores, so the A15 is more than a capable chip to handle daily tasks.
Moreover, the A16 Bionic, exclusive to the Pro models, will help these devices stand true to their name as actual professionals can opt for them.
Will the iPhone 14 be portless?
The EU has mandated that all the phones sold in Europe have a universal charging port by the next two years, which in today’s age is the USB-C port. Most smartphones sold today come with USB-C ports except for the iPhone.
Apple has implemented the USB-C port in several devices like the MacBook and the iPad. But it is hesitant to do so from the iPhone. Why? Well, that’s a story for another day.
So, since Apple is hesitant to switch to USB-C, is it possible that the iPhone will go totally portless? Look at it this way; it’s been two years since Apple introduced the MagSafe charger for iPhone. If it suddenly goes portless, it will face a lot of backlash from its consumers. Again, it’ll be the same story if it changes the port and uses a MagSafe-like port or even the USB-C port.
According to rumors, the upcoming iPhone will come with a lightning port, but the next iPhone launching in 2023 might be the first iPhone to go portless.
Software: iOS 16
This year at WWDC, Apple announced a software update to iPhone operating system, i.e., iOS 16. Users with iPhone 8 and above can upgrade to iOS 16 thanks to the Public Beta Program. There is no harm in giving it a try as it has a plethora of new features, but ensure you take a backup of your iPhone.
Features and Connectivity
No sim card slot?
The iPhone 13 series is 5G compatible, so there’s no doubt that the iPhone 14 series will support 5G. While the iPhone won’t be going portless this year, it is quite possible that the iPhone 14 might not have a sim slot and function on an e-sim.
Now, e-sims are not available globally. And so, the iPhone 14 series will support a physical sim, at least in the countries that do not have the infrastructure ready for an e-sim.
8GB RAM and 2TB ROM
The iPhone 14 models will have 6GB RAM, an upgrade from the 4GB RAM offered on the iPhone 13. However, it is the LPDDR4X RAM found on the iPhone 13.
The iPhone 14 Pro was initially expected to come with 8GB RAM. However, recent reports suggest that Apple will continue with 6GB of RAM even on iPhone 14 Pro models. However, it’ll be LPDDR5 RAM. And this upgrade will make a significant difference in performance. Even the iPhone 13 Pro with LPDDR4X RAM has high benchmark scores and unmatched performance.
Apple offered a 1TB storage model with the iPhone 13 Pro as ProRes video takes a lot of space and is intended for professionals. The possibility of Apple introducing a 2TB iPhone 14 Pro is quite high as ProRes video will have matured more by then. A camera sensor upgrade will also mean more storage is necessary for professionals.
Snapdragon X65 modem
Snapdragon X65 modem facilitates higher 5G speeds. It can go up to 10 gigabits per second. And the iPhone 14 models will come with this modem. Even if the current 5G speeds are nowhere near the capabilities of the X65 modem, its presence just equates to the iPhone being future-proof.
Satellite calling on iPhone 14
There was a lot of talk about the iPhone 13 coming with Satellite calling features, etc., but in the end, it did not. That might change this time around as the X65 modem offers satellite connectivity. This will allow users to send or report emergency messages in places where there is no cellular range.
How expensive will the iPhone 14 be?
Price is the most important factor before making a buying decision for any consumer goods. Apple has maintained the $999 mark from the iPhone X; even though there has been inflation, Apple has not increased the prices of its flagship devices.
On the contrary, Apple has segregated the base and the pro models, and if you look at it from that point of view, it seems that Apple has decreased prices even with the rising inflation rate. Now, let’s come back to the price of the iPhone 14.
The iPhone 14 is expected to launch at the base price of $799, and the iPhone 14 Max will be $100 higher. The iPhone Pro and Pro Max will come at the same prices.
Let us know your expectations of the iPhone 14 series and if you’re among the few who will miss the mini-sized iPhone in the comments below.