On September 12th at the 2023 Apple Event, we finally got confirmation of what the next batch of iPhones look like and what we can expect from the future of the brand. The iPhone 15 is due to see only a few major changes this year but they will change your experience with the phone quite a bit.
If you're looking to pick up the iPhone 15 or iPhone 15 Pro, you can finally buy one for yourself on September 22nd. However, you may want to know all the specs and design choices before doing so. Here's everything you should know about the iPhone 15 and 15 Pro design.
iPhone 15 & iPhone 15 Plus
The biggest change from the iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus is undoubtedly the arrival of the Dynamic Island. The feature is currently an iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max exclusive, but it will be on all iPhone 15 models this year.
Though the addition of the Dynamic Island is great, 120Hz ProMotion support will not be alongside it for the base iPhone 15 model. Neither will the always-on display, either.
There's still plenty to look forward to from that Dynamic Island, though. You'll of course see new animations for battery charging statuses and Face ID, and media controls will now live at the top of the screen as well. But Live Activities are where the fun's at.
Live Activities will live in the Dynamic Island while your iPhone 15 is in use, making it quicker and easier to see things like sports scores or where you Uber got to. It's a big upgrade, and you're going to love it.
Unfortunately, beyond some new iPhone 15 colors, don't expect much else to change this time around. It's a different matter for the iPhone 15 Pro models, however.
iPhone 15 Pro & iPhone 15 Pro Max
While the iPhone 15 getting the Dynamic Island is cool, the real fun is set to be centered around the iPhone 15 Pro models.
At the top of the list is a new titanium construction, a material that will make the iPhones more rigid and feel altogether more luxurious. They will be available in Natural Titanium, Blue Titanium, White Titanium, and Blue Titanium.
To go with that new titanium construction, Apple is also rounding the edges off somewhat, creating a look that might be closer to the iPhone 11 than the boxy look we're more accustomed to right now. That should make the phone easier to hold in the hand, making it more comfortable in the process. Haters of the sharper edges associated with modern iPhones will surely enjoy the change.
To go along with this, the iPhone 15 Pro Max will be the lightest Pro Max model Apple has ever launched.
Another big change is a functional one — the mute switch is going away for the first time since the iPhone's introduction 15 years ago. That OG iPhone introduced the mute switch, and it's been around ever since, but the iPhone 15 Pro models are expected to do away with it in favor of a new Action button. That button will work in a similar way to the Apple Watch Ultra's Action button, and allow people to quickly launch shortcuts, apps, and built-in features like the flashlight and more.
A change in charging port
While not strictly a design change, it's worth mentioning anyway — the iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Pro models are ditching Lightning in favor of the ubiquitous USB-C. That will mean a slight change in the way hole on the bottom of the new iPhones of course, but you'll get a new cable in the box anyway.
The only potential thing to consider here is that some of your old accessories might no longer fit. Accessories using Lightning cables will obviously need an adapter, while anything that gets close to the port might foul it depending on how big Apple's USB-C port turns out to be. Thankfully, Lightning and USB-C aren't all that different in terms of dimensions so hopefully that won't be too much of an issue.
New iPhones for everyone
The iPhone 15 models might not be getting a new material or curved edges, but buyers can look forward to real functionality improvements with that Dynamic Island. The same can be said for iPhone 15 Pro buyers thanks to the arrival of that Action button, too.
The two families of iPhones might be getting different things, but they're both getting new things. And that might just be enough to drive some upgraders who might otherwise have chosen to skip the iPhone 15 lineup and wait for next year's iPhone 16.
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Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too.
Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.