This year, Apple sparked a tectonic shift in the iPhone world by adding a new device and a new naming scheme to the iPhone 14 lineup, the iPhone 14 Plus.
The iPhone 14 Plus was originally thought to be the “iPhone 14 Max” and was meant to complement the larger iPhone 14 Pro Max – with a simpler chip, display and camera system. The 14 Plus also shows that Apple hasn’t changed its product name. for improved clarity.
Rumors now suggest that the company will apply a similar treatment to the top of next year’s iPhone lineup. Instead of the iPhone 15 Pro Max, it’s starting to look like we’ll be introduced to an ‘iPhone 15 Ultra’, set to sit above the iPhone 15 Pro.
The naming is not out of place for Apple. The company just launched an extreme version of its smartwatch — loaded to the gills with features — called the Apple Watch Ultra.
The Apple iPhone 15 Ultra concept makes sense to us, and moving away from Pro in the name will allow Apple to better justify any differences Apple decides to inject into its two most powerful 2023 iPhones. The 15 Ultra could be more than just a bigger screen and battery, like the current iPhone 14 Pro and Pro Max.
iPhone 15 Ultra release date predictions
Apple events historically happen in the first or second week of September. The company likes to make an announcement on a Tuesday or Wednesday, then start pre-sales the same Friday. The phone usually arrives in stores the Friday following.
For the iPhone 14, that event fell on September 7 (admittedly, earlier than expected), with three of the four phones going on sale over a week later, on September 16 (the iPhone 14 Plus arrived on October 7).
In 2023, that means September 5 or 12 are likely event dates (both are Tuesdays), though the 6 and 13 are possibilities too. We could see the phone in stores as early as September 15.
iPhone 15 Ultra price leaks
The early leaks about how Apple will price the iPhone 15 Ultra are telling. Apple may start the Ultra phone at $1,199. This would put the phone in the same pricing tier as Samsung’s current “Ultra” device, the Galaxy S22 Ultra. That phone costs $1,199.99 / £1,149 / AU$1,849.
The current iPhone 14 Pro Max costs $1,099 / £1,199 / AU$1,899, which itself represents a price hike outside of the US market over last year’s model. We think it’s possible that when Apple switches from ‘Pro Max’ to ‘Ultra’, it will bump the price by $100 in the US with corresponding price hikes elsewhere.
Hopefully, that price increase will also come with more reasons to buy. The current iPhone 14 Pro Max gives you a bigger screen and battery than the standard 14 Pro, and that’s it. That’s a big bonus for $100, but if Apple is going to push the price even higher, it needs to offer more features and more hardware to justify the price.
- iPhone 14 Pro Max: $1,099 / £1,199 / AU$1,899
- Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra 5G: $1,199.99 / £1,149 / AU$1,849
- iPhone 15 Ultra (expected): $1,199 / £1,309 / AU$2,099
In other words, we expect the iPhone 15 Ultra to cost about the same as the iPhone 14 Pro Max as it stands, with 256GB of storage.
iPhone 15 Ultra news, rumors and leaks
We have already heard quite a bit about the expected iPhone 15 with rumors reaching back to before the iPhone 14 series’ launch, but only recently has news of a higher-tier Apple iPhone 15 Ultra emerged. Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman mentioned right after launch of the 14 line that an Ultra would be coming, and that was the first we had heard of this new possible nomenclature.
After that, we heard further confirmation from other iPhone 15 leaks, and one leaker suggested that in addition to a bigger screen and battery, the iPhone 15 Ultra could see a better camera setup than its iPhone 15 Pro sibling.
The information is rather vague, with the leaker claiming that Apple is testing the much-anticipated 8K video recording feature for its next iPhone, but the leaker is unsure if the feature will come to the iPhone 15 Pro or only on higher-end models iPhone 15 Extreme Edition. This has sparked speculation that the Ultra phone’s camera could be an improvement over the Pro’s.
Samsung’s Galaxy S22 Ultra is a step ahead of its Galaxy S22 Plus and base model Galaxy S22, and one of the big improvements is the addition of a periscope telephoto zoom lens. The leak suggests that Apple could also use a periscope zoom on its larger Ultra device, a lens whose size requires greater flexibility on the larger phone than the smaller iPhone 15 Pro, which is also expected to launch next fall. significance.
Regardless, if the iPhone 15 Ultra does offer 8K video recording, it does offer higher data transfer speeds than the current model, so you can get all that footage off your phone in a reasonable amount of time.
And it looks like it might get such a speed upgrade, with reputable sources claiming that the Pro models of the iPhone 15 series (possibly including the iPhone 15 Ultra) will get a USB-C port that supports data transfer speeds up to 20Gbps or 40Gbps, That’s up from the current iPhone’s 480Mbps.
Beyond that, we’ve also heard that the iPhone 15 Ultra could be made of titanium, which is generally stronger and lighter than the stainless steel used in the iPhone 14 Pro Max. This claim comes from a tweet by leaker LeaksApplePro(opens in new tab), who isn’t one of the biggest leakers but was right before.
Another source has now said the same thing, so it may well be true. The sides will apparently also have a different shape, with them curving toward the rear of the phone instead of at right angles, the second source added.
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