Apple is one of the more predictable tech companies, in a sense that it has pretty concrete announcement and release time frames. No matter what happens, we always expect iPhones to be unveiled in September and released on the market shortly after, in a week or two’s time. This is why we expect the iPhone 14 to be announced and released in mid-September 2022, which is the usual iPhone announcement period for Apple. Of course, something unexpected could theoretically change that timeframe, but the chances are low – the iPhone 14 release date is in September 2022.
- iPhone 14: $799+
- iPhone 14: Pro $999+
- iPhone 14: Pro Max $1,099+
iPhone 14 Name
Apple is reportedly prepping four devices for 2022 and probably ditching the Apple iPhone mini lineup for good. The Pro models are likely to remain two. Here’s a purported iPhone 14 lineup that could cater very well to those unphased by compact phones:
- iPhone 14 6.1″ — an affordable device that’s a logical continuation of the iPhone 11, 12, and 13
- iPhone 14 Max 6.7″ — a larger version of the iPhone 14
- iPhone 14 Pro 6.1″ — the triple-camera iPhone 14 with all the bells and whistles in a manageable size
- iPhone 14 Pro Max 6.7″ — the largest and best expected iPhone 14 version.
Apple iPhone 14 Camera
The main wide-angle camera is the most likely to benefit from the larger sensor first, though the improved camera tech would certainly trickle down to the auxiliary ultra-wide and telephoto cameras in subsequent iPhones down the line. Of course, the Pro models will always be one step ahead.
“We believe that the new 2H22 iPhone may support direct 48MP output and 12MP (four cells merge output mode) output simultaneously,” says Ming-Chi Kuo. “With 12MP output, the CIS pixel size of the new 2H22 iPhone increases to about 2.5um, which is significantly larger than the iPhone 12 and iPhone 13, and larger than existing Android phones, and close to the DSC level.”
This would be the largest camera sensor ever fitted on an Apple iPhone. Thanks to quad pixel-binning should provide superb low-light image quality that would play extremely well with the Night mode of the iPhone 14. It looks like Sony will be supplying the new larger sensors to the iPhone 14, whereas LG will be tasked with the production of the camera modules for the iPhone 14 themselves.
What’s more, the new sensor will allow for 8K video capture with the main camera. At the moment, iPhones can only capture up to 4K video at 60 fps, and judging from Kuo’s insights, we shouldn’t be seeing a bump in video capture resolution this year. Yet, that’s okay: shooting 4K video at 60fps is a standard that’s likely to stick for now. Thus, an iPhone 14 without any significant updates in the video recording will be okay, seeing how big of bump the area got with the iPhone 13 series.
All of these nifty camera improvements will however result into increased costs for Apple, which are likely to trickle down to the end-user. It’s logical to expect that only the top-end iPhone 14 Pro Max will get the new and improved camera tech first, so we probably shouldn’t expect a steep price hike across all the range just yet.
Apple iPhone 14 Design
The under-display camera technology, or at least its iteration at the moment, relies on covering the hole, needed for the selfie camera, with another tiny display. Its resolution and pixel density are quite different from the main one, resulting in a patch that’s easily visible with the naked eye. Face ID could also benefit from this tech in the future, but the Pro models will likely get this feature first.
Either way, if Apple moves forward with this design, it’d arguably stand out less than its current Pro models. The Android world is full of punch hole camera smartphones, so Apple might find itself relying on its brand recognition more than ever to stand out from the crowd. It would just be a bit harder to go “Look, that’s an Apple iPhone!”. A hole punch cutout for Face ID doesn’t have the same ring to it.
Much like the iPhone 4, which was released in 2010, the iPhone 14 Pro Max model could use circular volume buttons on the side. The rear glass, which is once again glossy and sits on top of the Apple logo, is expected to extend over the sides a little and sit on top of the antenna bands too, another iPhone 4-like design choice. Regardless, the iPhone 14 lineup will likely score small design updates here and there.
Apple iPhone 14 Display
All iPhone 14 models are expected to arrive with 120Hz LTPO displays, unlike the iPhone 13-series, which feature 120Hz displays only on the iPhone 13 Pro and Pro Max. As a refresher, the latter feature screens with adaptive refresh rate that automatically changes depending on the type of content that’s viewed on-screen. However, there’s always the chance that only the Pro models might score high refresh rate displays.
As we already mentioned, the jury is still out there regarding the future of the notch. While it’s probably too early to call it quits for this signature iPhone design element, it is likely that Apple could be adopting a notch punch hole camera to accommodate all the front-facing display sensors.
Another rumor claims that Apple has awarded China-based display maker BOE with a test batch for Apple iPhone displays. If the factory meets Apple’s requirements, the stint can not only be used to pressure Samsung and LG to lower down the prices of their displays, but also see BOE join the ranks of official iPhone display suppliers. However, BOE hasn’t joined on the LTPO game just yet and doesn’t produce OLED displays with variable refresh rate, which could it mean it might only supply displays for the more affordable iPhones, the iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Max.
When it comes to under display Touch ID, the jury is still out if Apple will be adopting this tech at all instead of Face ID. Supposedly, under display Touch ID could act as a neat biometric alternative to the now mature Face ID, but we are yet to see any specific leaks for the biometric future of the Apple iPhone. So far, it doesn’t seem as if Touch ID will be available on any iPhone 14, as Face ID will rule supreme.
Apple iPhone 14 Specs and hardware
What about the iPhone 14 specs? Well, we know for a fact that the 2022 iPhone should be powered by the Apple A16 Bionic chipset, but what are its specs? While it’s too early to say, analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has a say on the matter. The iPhone 14-series would certainly be powered by one of the fastest chipsets expected to arrive in 2022, the A16 Bionic.
The reason for this uncertainty is the global semiconductor shortage. It has already affected the plans of other phone manufacturers and either postponed devices or lead to silent device cancellations. TSMC, the largest semiconductor manufacturer, is reportedly struggling with switching to the smaller manufacturing node on a scale that would satisfy the immense Apple demand that’s to come. This is why it’s mostly certain that the iPhone 14-series won’t be outfitted with a 3 or 4nm chipset.
According to TSMC’s production schedule, we could theoretically see up to a 15% performance gain as well as 30% power reduction, and a logic density gain of up to 70% over the current 5nm process. The bigger design win is in power draw reduction, so that each processor generation consumes less energy than the previous one and/or takes less space on the motherboard, depending on what mix of features the phone manufacturer has ordered.
Apple iPhone 14 Battery and charging
We’re yet to hear anything in particular regarding the batteries of the iPhone 14 series. Coming from the excellent battery life of the latest iPhone 13, our expectations are already high. Even if we see a battery capacity decrease, the hypothetical chipset battery savings should offset this and offer similar or even better battery life.
As a refresher, the iPhone 13 mini boasts a 2,406mAh battery, both the iPhone 13 and iPhone 13 Pro have 3095mAh batteries, and finally, the range-topping 4352mAh iPhone 13 Pro Max offers outstanding battery life.
We’ve heard rumors that Apple could come up with a portless iPhone in the future, but for the time being, it doesn’t seem that this will affect the iPhone 14. However, the recent ruling by the European Commission might put future Lightning port use on hold as the EC pushes for a common charging port on all electronics to combat e-waste. So far, a USB Type-C isn’t offseting the Lighnting port, at least not on the iPhone 14.
iPhone 14 will naturally have wireless charging but it’s unclear if all iPhone 14 models will come with reverse wireless charging. This could be reserved for the top-range Pro models as they have the largest batteries.