After months of leaks and rumors, Apple has launched the iPhone 15 series. So, if you're thinking about buying a new iPhone, we have you covered with a look at every single detail we know about the mainline iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus. That includes pricing, cameras, displays, and every single thing that might matter for you, and your wallet.
iPhone 15: Release date and availability
The iPhone 15 starts at $800 for 128GB variants, and the iPhone 15 Plus starts at $900 for a 128GB model. You can also find models with up to 256GB and 512GB of storage, too for an additional cost. And yes, the iPhone 15 also comes in multiple colors. You can find the iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus in pink, yellow, green, blue, and black. Preorders start on Friday, September 15, and they ship on September 22.
Display and design
Let's start with some of the exciting changes. Does the Dynamic Island intrigue you, but you just can't justify paying for a Pro iPhone? Wish no more! This has now made a debut on the regular iPhone 15 and 15 Plus models. Apple has also retained the 6.1- and 6.7-inch screen sizes on the new models, but those screens are now as bright as ever. Brightness on the Super Retina HDR display can hit up to 1,600 nits when watching Peak HDR content, and up to 2,000 nits in outdoor brightness. That's twice as bright as before, according to Apple.
As for the rest of the design of the iPhone, the colors on the back glass are now infused throughout for a better look and finish. Apple also strengthened the back glass of the phone with dal-ion exchange and polished the back with etched nanocrystalline particles for a matte finish. The edges are also countered to feel nicer.
Apple has been depending on the Lightning port since 2012. This decade-old technology is now finally gone in favor of USB-C with the new iPhone 15. This change is likely due to EU regulations that pushed the company to adopt the more universal charger and drop its proprietary one. Though, unfortunately, the regular iPhone 15 and 15 Plus are sticking to USB 2.0 speed, which is the same as what the Lighting Connector offers. If you want faster USB 3.0 speeds, you're going to have to buy iPhone 15 Pro.
Speaking of ports, Apple dropped the physical SIM tray for U.S. iPhone 14 models last year. iPhone 15 and 15 Plus receive the same treatment and are not compatible with physical SIM cards.
For a few years now, Apple has supported three charging standards on its iPhones. You get to use a Lightning cable for wired charging. Alternatively, you can use any Qi pad for slow wireless charging. Lastly, you get the MagSafe protocol for faster wireless charging speeds The iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus better than since they now support the Qi2 standard, which is similar to MagSafe. These phones can take advantage of faster wireless charging speeds without needing to rely on MagSafe-certified accessories. Otherwise, users could rely on a wired charger, thanks to the USB-C port.
The iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus feature the Apple A16 Bionic chip. This is the same 4nm six-core chip from 2022 that's in the iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max. The chip has two high-performance cores that Apple says can use 20 percent less power. The chip also has four high-efficiency cores, for heavy multitasking. As for the GPU, it's a 5-core GPU, that can handle gaming and other tasks. Apple says it has 50 percent more memory bandwidth. Of course, there's the 16-core neural engine, too. Our iPhone 14 Pro review has a bit more on the performance of this chip. We found it was an excellent performer, though the Pro model phones have 6GB RAM.
For years, one of the most obvious and prominent distinguishing factors between regular and Pro iPhones has been the rear camera system. The gap got a little bit smaller in 2023 though with the iPhone 15. The iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus have a new 48MP main camera paired with a 12MP Ultra Wide camera. That main camera uses a quad pixel sensor which groups an image together for a 24MP super high-resolution image. Thanks to software and the actual dual camera sensors, there's also a new 2x Telephoto option, with the option for three software zoom levels of 0.5x, 1x, and 2x for the first time on a main-line dual camera lens iPhone.
Software tricks also mean you don't have to switch to Portrait mode to take a Portrait on iPhone 15, and you can just tap on the image to turn it into one later in the Photos app. You'll also be able to adjust the focal point later on, should you want a better-looking image. Apple even improved Night Mode for shaper images and added Smart HDR rendering and captures.
Crash Detection and Emergency SOS via Satellite
Finally, there's Crash Detection and Emergency SOS via Satellite. These are safety features in the new iPhone 15. You'll get these in 14 countries, using satellites to help you in situations where you might have car trouble and Wi-Fi isn't available. The iPhone will help connect you to AAS for help and prompt you with a questionnaire. It's free for two years.
It's no secret at this point that Apple is aggressively trying to sell more Pro iPhone units. With every passing year, the Cupertino tech giant is increasing the gap between the regular and highest-end models. Will the regular iPhone 15 and 15 Plus be that way for you, too? We'll let you decide, but that was a look at everything we know.