It’s September, which means it’s time for Apple to announce new stuff. The company has finally announced its 2023 range of iPhones, the iPhone 15 series, and we also have our first official look at this year’s iPhone 15 Pro and 15 Pro Max. Many of the rumored improvements are present, but there are also a few surprises.
The iPhone 14 Pro last year was a radical change, and the regular iPhone 15 inherited several of the changes included in that older phone. It’s the iPhone 15 Pro’s turn, then, to innovate, and while it’s arguably a more sensible upgrade compared to what the iPhone 14 Pro represented, there’s still a lot to talk about. For starters, it has a new ultra-resistant brushed grade 5 titanium frame. Apple says that it’s the most premium material it has used to date, and it allows for the phones to be lighter and, at the same time, way more durable. Aluminum is still used inside, but Apple says that this is a good thing, helping with thermals and further decreasing weight. It also has incredibly reduced screen edges, as well as an improved ceramic shield screen.
The smartphone comes with the new A17 Pro SoC, which Apple says is a big step-up on the iPhone range. The 3nm chip comes with a new redesigned “pro-class” 6-core GPU with features such as mesh shading and hardware-accelerated ray tracing a la NVIDIA RTX — something that should make for a significant improvement in mobile gaming. The chip’s neural engine will also work in hand with the GPU to optimize games. We also have a 6-core CPU with faster performance and efficiency cores, and 19 billion transistors, as well as a new dedicated AV1 decoder.
The phone also comes with all the same general improvements that came with the iPhone 15. This means that the proprietary Lightning port is going away, and is being replaced with a good old USB-C port — a long-overdue change that means iPhones and Android phones can finally use the same chargers. Apple had moved away from Lightning on its iPad lineup, and it looks like it’s finally doing the same thing with its remaining Lightning devices. Standardization is always good news.
The phone comes with a dedicated USB controller with USB 3.0 support, which can be used for recording directly to external storage, faster local device backups, and more. We also have a new customizable action button that’s replacing the long-standing Mute switch — it can still mute your phone by default, but you can remap them to other things, such as quickly recording voice memos, fire up the camera, or pretty much anything.
As usual, there are some improvements to the cameras. The 48MP sensor is larger than the one in the iPhone 15, which allows for a lot of improvements, capturing a lot more detail and light. And Apple is also adding a lot of new additions that will be useful if you actually care about quality mobile photography, like 48MP HEIF shooting. There’s also a 12MP 5x telephoto camera with a 120mm focal length and a 12MP ultra-wide camera with support for macrophotography. In total, we have, according to Apple, the equivalent of seven camera lenses and 24, 28, and 35mm lenses. 4K recording is also getting a bump to 60fps. There’s also an OIS system that can move in three directions and can provide up to 10,000 micro-adjustments per second.
The iPhone 15 Pro is going on sale starting at $999 for the regular size, and $1199 for the Pro Max model. It will be sold in Black Titanium, White Titanium, Blue Titanium, and Natural Titanium. You can pre-order yours starting this Friday from the Apple Store, and it will be available starting on September 22nd.