Apple's shiny new iPhone 14 has just hit the streets, which surely means it's time we had some iPhone 15 rumours. And sure enough, we've just received a pretty big revelation from a serial Apple tipster about the rumoured iPhone 15 Ultra.
Less than a week after we got wind of the possible existence of an iPhone 15 Ultra, we're starting to get some insight into what that might look like, and it seems that Apple's most expensive phone will no longer just be a larger version of the iPhone Pro. The iPhone Ultra would be designed to replace the iPhone Pro Max with a more clearly separated device in terms of specs (if you're thinking of getting the current iPhone, make sure you see our roundup of the best iPhone 14 prices).
According to what is reported by my source iPhone 15 Ultra will have 2 front cameras, USB-C and will start from 256GB. iPhone 15 Pro instead will always start from 128GB and will have USB-C but only 1 front camera #iphone #iphone15 #iphone15ultra pic.twitter.com/lIn6OhMNkoSeptember 26, 2022
With Apple recently adding a new moniker to its roster of product names with the launch of the Apple Watch Ultra (we also have the M1 Ultra chip in the Mac Studio 2022), the rumour is that the 'Ultra' name will make it to other products, starting with the iPhone 15. According to the content creator and Apple tipster Majin Bu (opens in new tab), the iPhone 15 Ultra will replace the iPhone Pro Max with features and specs that separate it from the iPhone 15 Pro, most notably the addition of a second selfie camera.
Selfie cameras have been ignored a little as phone makers concentrate on making the main cameras better and better. While the iPhone Pro has long had three main cameras on the back. The front selfie camera remains a single lens. The introduction of a second selfie camera suggests that the iPhone 15 Ultra would (finally) give the selfie camera some attention, and a big boost in quality.
What are the benefits of two selfie cameras? Bu hasn't suggested what the two lenses will be, but it could mean the addition of an ultra-wide selfie lens (no more having to stretch your arm out of its socket to take a group selfie) or better zoom. Or it could introduce a dual system for sharper, more detailed images, or allow selfies to be taken with a shallower depth of field so that the subject stands out more from the background.
Android smartphones have experimented with dual selfie cameras. There was the Samsung Galaxy S10 Plus, but only one of its selfie lenses took photos; the other was a depth sensor. Since then they've largely been abandoned in favour of focusing on ever-improving main camera arrays, which has left the selfie camera needing some love.
Bu's also suggested that the iPhone 15 Ultra will also have a higher starting configuration for storage, starting at 256GB instead of the Pro's 128GB. Both the iPhone 15 Ultra and iPhone 15 Pro would have a USB-C port for fast Thunderbolt 4 charging. That's something we've been waiting for, especially since the European Union has made USB-C obligatory from late 2024, effecting killing Apple's Lightning charger in Europe.
Concept artists have already been imagining what the iPhone 15 Ultra might look like. It seems that 4RMD may have got one thing right at least in the stunning titanium-bodied concept shown above – an extra lens. But it seems the extra lens may turn out to be on the front, not on the back of the camera (that would look far too much like the hobs on a cooker).
We should clarify that Apple has offered no confirmation that the iPhone 15 Ultra is real or that it will be adopting that name. But the rumours shared by MajinBu would seem to make sense – partly. The current iPhone 14 Pro Max is basically just the same phone as the iPhone Pro. The only thing that justifies its stepper price tag is its larger physical size. The creation of an iPhone Ultra as a high-high-end device would offer more of a differential between the products, and more reason to opt for the most expensive phone in the Apple range, which we suspect may become more expensive.
On the other hand, the iPhone Pro is the high-end iPhone. If an iPhone Ultra emerges, would iPhone Pro become midrange, or come in for less of an upgrade than we would normally expect? The other aspect that makes the idea of an iPhone Ultra seem strange is that with the iPhone 14 Apple just killed the iPhone mini.
Instead of making a smaller version of the iPhone, it created a larger version that's exactly the same as the standard iPhone but in a larger size, in the same way that the iPhone Pro Max is a larger version of the iPhone Pro. But then again the logic behind Apple's product generations and naming conventions can be hard to keep track of. If you're keen to get what could be the last iPhone Pro Max, make sure you check our iPhone 14 Pro Max review. And if you've already got a new iPhone 14 in any model, make sure you have one of the best iPhone 14 cases.