Apple scrapped iPhone 14 Pro's next-gen GPU plans because of engineering failures, says report

iPhone 14 Pro A16 chip
(Image credit: Apple)

Apple finds a way to push the limits of its chips with every new iteration of its devices. We've seen it with years of the A series iPhone chips, and we've seen it with the M series Mac chips. However, it appears that Apple aimed a bit too high with its plans for the iPhone 14 Pro GPU.

A new report from The Information says that Apple's engineering team had some lofty goals for a next-gen GPU but had to scale them back because of engineering failures, leading to the iPhone 14 Pro shipping with a much tamer GPU.

iPhone 14 Pro GPU could've had hardware-accelerated ray tracing

The report discusses a few issues with Apple's silicon team, mostly with regards to keeping talent, which seems to be in heavy demand right now. The silicon team had apparently planned for a much more capable GPU for the best iPhone right now, the iPhone 14 Pro, but it didn't quite work out the way they wanted.

According to the report, the team was too ambitious with new features. These features apparently included better processing capabilities, among which was hardware-accelerated ray tracing. The A16 Bionic found in the iPhone 14 Pro is plenty capable, and easily one of the best performing on the market, GPU included, but Apple's engineering team was aiming for an even higher ceiling.

However, the prototypes had some engineering flaws that resulted in higher power consumption and poor thermals. As a result, the final product ended up having a GPU that was only an iterative upgrade over that of the iPhone 13 Pro. The Information describes this failure as one that is "unprecedented" in Apple's history.

There's some chance that we may still see some of these GPU capabilities in the iPhone 15 series when it debuts, provided Apple figures out a way around the issues.

Palash Volvoikar

Palash has been a technology and entertainment journalist since 2013. Starting with Android news and features, he has also worked as the news head for Wiki of Thrones, and a freelance writer for Windows Central, Observer, MakeUseOf, MySmartPrice, ThinkComputers, and others. He also worked as a writer and journalist for Android Authority, covering computing, before returning to freelancing all over town.