iPhone 16: news, price rumors, release date and more

Apple iPhone 15 Pro Max Andy Boxall / Digital Trends

Even though Apple only launched the iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Pro recently, rumors about the iPhone 16 lineup coming in 2024 are already starting to circulate. It’s hard to believe, but it’s true!

We’re expecting some bigger changes with the iPhone 16 compared to the iPhone 15, so we’ve rounded up all the big rumors and reports here for you.

iPhone 16: release date

Blue Titanium (left) and Natural Titanium iPhone 15 Pro on a concrete bench.
Christine Romero-Chan / Digital Trends

Like most iPhone releases, Apple is expected to announce and release the iPhone 16 lineup this fall.

Barring a delay, like in 2020, when the iPhone 12 launched in October, we’ll likely see the iPhone 16 and iPhone 16 Pro models in September. Things can always change, but this is what we anticipate at this time. Unless we hear otherwise, expect a September 2024 release date for Apple’s next iPhone.

iPhone 16: price

Natural titanium iPhone 15 Pro (left) and green iPhone 15 on a Haunted Mansion wallpaper stand.
Christine Romero-Chan / Digital Trends

While the iPhone 15 lineup was expected to see a price increase, that wasn’t the case with the exception of the iPhone 15 Pro Max models, which now start at $1,200 for the 256GB version (no more 128GB variant). It’s the only one in the iPhone 15 lineup to see a “price increase,” if you want to call it that.

iPhone 15 component prices are at the highest level for Apple, even though it is able to absorb the increase in production costs. But that may not be the case in 2024, so we might see slight improvements for all iPhone 16 models.

However, how much the increase is likely remains unknown.

iPhone 16: design

iPhone 16 prototype render.

It seems like Apple may change the design of the base model of the iPhone 16. A report from MacRumors shows off three different prototype models with distinctive designs. But one similarity to all three is the vertical dual camera layout. The reason for the vertical layout is most likely due to spatial video recording for the Apple Vision Pro headset.

The three prototypes have several differences between them. One of them has an iPhone X-style camera, which is pill-shaped. The other two have separate lenses, similar to the iPhone 12 style. These prototype designs also have integrated volume buttons with haptics or standard mechanical volume buttons with a capacitive Action button and a new Capture button.

right edge profile from a leaked render of the iPhone 16.

According to MacRumors, the most likely design is one with capacitive Action buttons, mechanical volume buttons, and a new Capture button. In the render, it is a black model. Since the Capture button is located on the right edge of the body, the mmWave antenna will be moved to the left edge.

This prototype also gives us an idea of ​​the colors Apple will use, at least for the base model of the iPhone 16. These colors include pale yellow, pink, and black. Other colors are not yet known, but Apple usually has more than three colors for base iPhone models, so we can expect more.

On February 6, MacRumors reports that Apple appears to have shifted focus to a slimmer camera bump design, which is different from what we saw above. The latest iPhone 16 prototype features a vertical camera arrangement, similar to that previously described on the three prototypes, but now in a pill-shaped camera module. The main and ultrawide lenses will be in a vertical layout with two separate camera rings, and the LED flash will be placed adjacent to the bump, as in previous prototype designs.

iPhone 16 mockup with slim vertical camera module.

This mockup from MacRumors is also in line Leaked schematic from @MajinBuOfficial in X (formerly Twitter). This slimmer camera bump is reminiscent of the iPhone X and iPhone XS models.

Apart from that, the new prototype also seems to have slight changes to the Action and Capture buttons. It appears that the new prototype has a smaller Action button like the one found on the current iPhone 15 Pro. The Capture button is also pressure-sensitive and sits flush with the iPhone 16’s frame. This means Apple might ditch the idea of ​​a capacitive Action button.

While it appears the iPhone 16 and iPhone 16 Plus will remain the same size as the iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus, the Pro models will be slightly larger. According to reports, the iPhone 16 Pro screen will increase from 6.1 inches to 6.3 inches, while the iPhone 16 Pro Max will increase from 6.7 inches to 6.9 inches.

Rendering the size of the iPhone 16 Pro Max compared to the iPhone 15 Pro.

With a larger screen size, the physical dimensions of the body will also experience a slight bulge. This means the body will be slightly taller and wider than the current iPhone 15 Pro model, but the thickness will remain the same. Due to the larger dimensions, the weight will also increase.

Regarding the display, the iPhone 16 series will reportedly use micro lens technology on its OLED panel. This will result in increased brightness and more efficient power consumption.

The iPhone 16 should also introduce new haptic buttons, which were originally supposed to be on the iPhone 15 Pro models. However, due to technical issues, it was postponed to 2024. Rumors suggest that we might see a unified button design earlier on the iPhone 16 Pro. New haptic and solid-state button technology will be used in the Action button, which will be on all iPhone 16 models, as well as a new capacitive button currently known as the “capture” button.

MacRumors has reports suggesting that the new Capture button could actually mimic the functionality of high-end cameras. According to the Weibo leaker, the button will be able to detect varying levels of pressure to simulate the two-step shutter button of a stand-alone digital camera.

Mark Gurman claims that the Capture button will be capable record video. Information also reported that the Capture button could add functions like zooming in and out with a swipe of the button, and even focusing on a subject with lighter pressure. Both of these reports have now been corroborated by Weibo users.Instant Digital.” With the Capture button used to record video and even adjust focus, it’s a clear indicator of Apple’s commitment to photography with the iPhone. However, Instant Digital seems to have a mixed track record with Apple leaks, although Gurman and The Information are more solid.

iPhone 16: specifications

Presenting A17 Pro silicon on stage at Apple Event.

For the base models of the iPhone 16 and iPhone 16 Plus, we will see the A17 chip. However, this may not be the same A17 Pro chip that is currently in the iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max. Apple will likely use a lower-cost process for the standard “A17” chip that can be implemented in standard iPhone 16 models.

Analyst Jeff Pu thinks that Apple will take a different path and just use the A18 and A18 Pro names for its new chips. This means that all iPhone 16 models will have some variation of the A18 chip instead of using the A17, which could be considered a “last generation” chip.

Although overheating was an issue on iPhone 15 models on launch day, Apple is said to have been working on a new thermal design to help with heat dissipation. This could be a graphene thermal system for the iPhone 16 base model, while the iPhone 16 Pro may have a metal battery casing. Currently, iPhones use copper for heat sinks, but graphene has higher thermal conductivity.

There are rumors that Apple is working on its own 5G modem chip, but that won’t happen until 2024. Instead, the iPhone 16 Pro might use a Qualcomm Snapdragon X75 modem for faster and more efficient 5G connectivity. . However, the base model iPhone 16 will still use the Qualcomm X70 chip currently in the iPhone 15. The iPhone 16 could also have Wi-Fi 7 technology that can deliver at least 30 gigabits per second, up to 40 Gb/s.

iPhone 16: camera

Close-up render of the iPhone 16's slim camera module.

As previously mentioned, the base models of the iPhone 16 and iPhone 16 Plus are rumored to have a vertical camera layout similar in style to the iPhone X or iPhone 12. The iPhone 16 Pro models will continue to use a triple-lens camera system.

Apple may be adding a major camera upgrade to the iPhone 16 Pro and iPhone 16 Pro Max with a new 48MP ultrawide lens, which is a big jump from the current 12MP on the iPhone 15 Pro. With a 48MP ultrawide camera, the resulting images will be more detailed, especially if taken in low-light environments.

The iPhone 16 Pro Max could also get an upgraded eight-piece hybrid lens that includes two glass elements and six plastic elements for the 48MP main camera, as well as the telephoto and ultrawide.

The most interesting rumor is that the iPhone 16 Pro and iPhone 16 Pro Max will have at least 5x optical zoom capability, not just the larger Max version. However, there’s also the possibility of the iPhone 16 Pro Max getting a super telephoto camera for a significant increase in optical zoom, further differentiating the two Pro models.

iPhone 16: battery life

Battery settings on iPhone 15 Pro Max.
Joe Maring / Digital Trends

We may finally see better battery life with the iPhone 16 Pro models reportedly uses stacked battery technology. With stacked batteries, this can result in higher capacities and longer lifetimes. It could also feature faster 40W wired and 20W MagSafe charging speeds.

Charging speed has long been an area where Apple lags behind its competitors. If the iPhone 16 actually addresses this, we might be in for a treat.

Based on @MajinBuOfficialwe also have a good idea of ​​what to expect from the batteries across the iPhone 16 lineup, with comprehensive change. Leaks claim that the iPhone 16 and iPhone 16 Pro Max will have larger batteries than their predecessors, but the iPhone 16 Plus will have a drawback and will actually have less battery capacity than before. The Pro Max model also no longer uses the L-shaped battery design and will return to the rectangular shape on the iPhone 16 and 16 Plus.

So far, it looks like the standard iPhone 16 will have 3,561 mAh (up from the iPhone 15’s 3,349 mAh), the iPhone 16 Plus will have 4,006 mAh (down from the iPhone 15 Plus’s 4,383 mAh), and the iPhone 16 Pro Max will have 3,561 mAh. to 4,676 mAh (up from the iPhone 15 Pro Max’s 4,422 mAh). For some reason, there is no information regarding a possible iPhone 16 Pro. However, this is all just speculation from @MajinBuOfficial who has a mixed record with Apple leaks.

iPhone 16: software and updates

An iPhone 15 Pro display with the iPhone 15 Pro Max in the background.
Prakhar Khanna / Digital Trends

Since the iPhone 16 lineup will arrive in the fall and Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) usually takes place in the summer to show off new software, we can expect iOS 18 to launch alongside the iPhone 16.

While most other tech companies have invested heavily in AI, Apple has remained largely silent. But this may all change with iOS 18 and Siri Apple has been working to improve this with smarter AI powered by large language models (LLM). While Apple may bring new LLM features to all iPhones, some will likely remain exclusive to the iPhone 16 line.

Some possible AI features include improved interaction with Siri and Messages, better Apple Music playlists created automatically, integration with productivity apps, and more. There are also rumors of improvements to the microphone that would go along with improvements to the AI-powered Siri experience, such as improved water resistance and a better signal-to-noise ratio.

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