Apple is all set to pull the wraps off the iPhone 14 series a few months from now. The 2022 iPhones are expected to be a significant upgrade to the iPhone 13 series, which itself was a modest increment to the iPhone 12 lineup. Ahead of the imminent launch of the new iPhone models, here’s a detailed roundup of the confirmed iPhone 14 features based on leaks and rumors.
Like every year, a lot of the information about the iPhone 14 series has leaked online. Most of these leaks have been corroborated by several independent industry sources, lending them additional credibility. So, here are the features you can expect from the iPhone 14 series based on leaks.
iPhone 14 Design
Premium Materials and Pill-Shaped Notch
On the outside, the iPhone 14 models will be very similar to the iPhone 13 series. However, leaker Jon Prosser believes Apple will make use of more premium materials such as a titanium alloy for the frame. Early rumors also suggested the 2022 iPhone models will do away with the notch and camera hump. While several subsequent rumors corroborated the former, leaked CAD renders for the iPhone 14 series suggest the camera bump will be carried over from the iPhone 13 series. In fact, it will be even bigger than what we see on the iPhone 13 series due to the use of bigger camera sensors.
Initially, Prosser’s renders of the iPhone 14 models suggested the iPhone 14 design will draw inspiration from the iPhone 4 with its round volume buttons while retaining the edgy look of the iPhone 13 series. Under-display Face ID hardware was also said to be on the cards. Now that we are inching closer to launch, leaked CAD renders show that the cheaper vanilla iPhone 14 is likely to retain the notch for the FaceTime camera and Face ID hardware, although it will be the same size as the iPhone 13.
On the iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max, Ross Young, Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, and other sources independently claim that Apple will use a hole-punch cutout alongside a pill-shaped cutout. While the former will house the FaceTime camera, the latter’s larger opening will be used to accommodate the TrueDepth camera and dot projector for Face ID.
No SIM Tray?
The leaked CAD renders reveal button placement just like the iPhone 13 series and also show off a SIM tray on the iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Pro models. This quashes previous rumors that the Pro models would not have a physical SIM slot and rely on eSIM instead.
However, Apple could launch an eSIM-only variant of the iPhone 14 in select markets, such as the US.
Schematics and Dimensions
The leaked schematic drawings reveal that the iPhone 14 lineup will feature slightly thicker and more prominent camera bumps than the iPhone 13 series, although the overall thickness of the phones will remain unchanged. The dimensions included in the schematic drawing show that the iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max could be a smidge narrower and shorter than their predecessors but the in-hand feel shouldn’t be very different from the iPhone 13 models.
|Thickness||Length||Width||Camera Bump Thickness|
|iPhone 13 Pro||7.85||146.71||71.52||4.05|
|iPhone 14 Pro||7.85||147.46||71.45||4.17|
|iPhone 13 Pro Max||7.85||160.84||78.07||4.05|
|iPhone 14 Pro Max||7.85||160.7||77.58||4.17|
No iPhone 14 mini
An interesting change reportedly coming with the iPhone 14 lineup is that Apple could discontinue the “mini” iPhone. Considering the iPhone 12 mini and iPhone 13 mini were not flying off the shelves after launch, Apple could discontinue this variant with the 5.4-inch screen. Instead, the upcoming iPhone lineup could consist of the following models:
- iPhone 14
- iPhone 14 Max
- iPhone 14 Pro
- iPhone 14 Pro Max
In terms of display sizes, the vanilla iPhone 14 and the iPhone 14 Pro are expected to feature a 6.1-inch screen. Meanwhile, the Max models should feature a 6.7-inch display.
iPhone 14 Display
The rumor mill suggests all the upcoming iPhone 14 Pro models will continue to support ProMotion display technology. The higher 120Hz refresh rate makes the scrolling and gaming experience on iPhones a lot more fluid and smooth. Some leaks suggest Apple could use the ProMotion display technology on all iPhone 14 models. However, Display Supply Chain Consultants (DSCC) analyst Ross Young reasons that due to a display panel shortage, Apple will continue using ProMotion only on the costlier iPhones.
The company is rumored to be looking for new suppliers for LTPO OLED panels for the iPhone 14 Pro models — Samsung was the sole supplier for the iPhone 13 display panels. This year, though, LG Display and BOE have wedged their foot in the door. However, it is unclear if Apple will be sourcing 120Hz OLED panels from them for this year’s iPhone or not.
If the leaked CAD renders and schematics are anything to go by, the iPhone 14 Pro models will retain the same triple rear camera configuration as its predecessors. Likewise, the vanilla iPhone 14 will also continue to sport a dual-camera configuration on the rear.
New 48MP Primary Sensor
Late in 2021, rumors pointed to the possibility of a resolution upgrade on the primary camera across the iPhone 14 lineup. Analyst Ming-Chi Kuo claimed Apple would use a 48MP primary camera sensor on the phones. By default, the camera app would shoot 12MP images using pixel binning to retain the most detail.
If you aren’t familiar, pixel binning is a boon to smartphone camera technology because the sensor size on a device is limited and just increasing the image resolution (megapixels) makes each pixel smaller. On a tiny smartphone camera sensor that captures lesser light than a conventional camera, high resolution causes low-light picture quality to suffer. Pixel binning allows data from groups of pixels to be combined to create a lower resolution image than the sensor’s resolution but retains the details.
A sketchy rumor on the Chinese blogging platform Weibo claims Apple will also increase the sensor size by 21 percent on the iPhone 14 Pro models. A physically larger sensor and the use of pixel binning algorithm could translate into an effective camera setup that doesn’t compromise clarity or low-light performance.
In addition to shooting crispy detailed 48MP pictures, the new sensor should also unlock 8K video recording capabilities on the iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max.
Early rumors about the iPhone 14 series suggested Apple could equip the phone with an upgraded periscope lens for up to 10x optical zoom, up from the 3x seen on iPhone 13 models. However, as we get closer to launch, reputed analysts have pushed back their prediction, saying the company won’t use a periscope lens design until 2025 or 2026.
For the uninitiated, in a periscope camera system, the sensor is placed in a plane perpendicular to the phone’s back instead of in a parallel plane. A mirror is used to reflect the light from the scene towards the camera sensor. The optical zoom is enabled by a multi-part lens assembly stacked vertically in planes parallel to the image sensor. After getting reflected by the mirror, the light rays pass through the lenses and are projected onto the sensor. The most significant advantage of the periscope system is that complicated lens assemblies such as those for telephoto lenses can be crammed into the compact form factor of a smartphone body. For the end-user, the periscope cameras enable high optical zoom so you could take razor-sharp photos from afar with minimal distortion and loss in clarity.
Apple would be rather late to add a periscope lens to the iPhone in 2023. Several flagship Android smartphones like the Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra and Huawei P30 Pro already sport periscope cameras.
A16 Bionic for iPhone 14 Pro Models
Every new generation of the iPhone is usually powered by a new A-series chip. Rumors suggest Apple could deviate from the norm with the iPhone 14. Only the iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max are expected to be powered by the new A16 Bionic chip while the more affordably-priced iPhone 14 models would continue using the A15 Bionic seen in the iPhone 13.
Some rumors suggest the A16 Bionic will be a beast of a mobile chip, given that it has a larger die size than its predecessor despite being based on TSMC’s more efficient 4nm process. Some reports contradict the claim, suggesting the A16 Bionic is based on the foundry’s NP4 process, an improved version of the 5nm process. The physically larger chip could require reorganization of the internal components while the efficiency improvements could also translate into battery life improvements.
New Qualcomm X65 Modem
Another crucial improvement likely making its way to the iPhone 14 series is Qualcomm’s Snapdragon X65 modem. It is the world’s first 10 Gigabit 5G modem system for smartphones. The new chip could also unlock satellite connectivity features on the upcoming iPhones. Previous reports suggest Apple plans to implement satellite-based emergency communication features in future iPhones so users can report emergencies and communicate even from disaster-stricken or remote regions lacking cellular coverage.
A Taiwanese report suggests Apple has also placed an order for 5G radio frequency (RF) chips with TSMC. The chips reportedly rely on Apple’s own tech and would be fabricated on the reputed foundry’s 6nm process. For the average iPhone 14 user, this could translate into better battery life when using 5G and Wi-Fi 6E.
Another big upgrade that could come to the iPhone 14 series is in the form of RAM. iPhones have always had lesser RAM than their flagship Android counterparts. Chinese supply chain rumors indicate that with the iPhone 14 series, Apple is likely to up the RAM capacity from 6GB to 8GB on the Pro models. However, Haitong International Securities analyst Jeff Pu begs to differ and claims all the iPhone 14 models will soldier on with the 6GB of RAM.
iPhone 14 Release Date
Following its usual schedule of launching iPhones at an event in September , Apple is likely to reveal the iPhone 14 series to the world at an event around the same time this year, too.
Based on all the above features coming to the iPhone 14 series, what do you think about the upcoming iPhones from Apple?