The iPhone 13 was only revealed a few months ago, but that doesn’t mean Apple isn’t working on the iPhone 14 behind closed doors – and given a surprising number of early leaks, we’ve already got some idea of what the company could be planning for its 2022 flagship range.
In fact, if the rumours are true, it could be a much more exciting upgrade than what’s on offer from the iPhone 13, with current rumours pointing towards a potential redesign, the removal of the Face ID notch and a vastly improved camera setup too.
With that in mind, we outline all there is to know about the iPhone 14 right now, including release date and pricing predictions as well as the latest leaks and rumours detailing what to expect from Apple’s 2022 flagship iPhone range.
When will the iPhone 14 be released?
Apple only officially unveiled the iPhone 13 in September, so we’re still quite some time away from the release of the next-gen iPhone 14.
While there aren’t any solid rumours right now, iPhone releases tend to happen in September – with the exception of 2020 amidst the pandemic – so with that in mind, we expect the iPhone 14 range to be released sometime in September 2022.
We’ll update this section once we hear more, so check back frequently for the latest details, and if you can’t wait that long, take a look at our iPhone buying guide.
How much will the iPhone 14 cost?
It’s far too early to give any concrete predictions on pricing, but the good news is that, even with chip shortages prevalent in 2022 driving up the price Apple has to pay for components, this year's iPhone 13 range comes in at the same price as its predecessor.
While this doesn't necessarily mean we're expecting the same from this year's models, it's a good sign that Apple is trying its best to hold the iPhone to its current pricing.
For reference, the current iPhone range costs:
- iPhone 13 Pro Max - £1,099/$1,099
- iPhone 13 Pro - £999/$999
- iPhone 13 - £799/$799
- iPhone 13 Mini - £699/$699
- iPhone 11 - £599/$599
- iPhone XR - £499/$499
- iPhone SE - £399/$399
What to expect from the iPhone 14 range
Despite being quite some time away from the potential release, we’ve got a rough idea of what the iPhone 14 will offer – and it’s set to be an exciting one if current rumours are to be believed.
Bye Mini, hello Max
We all knew it was coming; after poor iPhone 12 mini sales, and expecting very much the same with the iPhone 13 mini, Ming-Chi Kuo suggests that Apple will discontinue the line officially in 2022.
Instead, the company is said to offer 6.1- and 6.7in variants of both the base and Pro models, meaning we could see the introduction of a new iPhone 14 Max alongside the iPhone 14 Pro Max.
The Elec goes as far as to suggest that the iPhone 14 Max could offer the same 120Hz refresh rate as the Pro range, although this is dependent on manufacturing costs and availability.
More recently, a 9to5Mac source has also confirmed that the Mini is indeed dead, set to be replaced by an iPhone 14 Max with the internal codename D28 - although there's no mention of the possibility of ProMotion support.
Redesigned form factor
Our first look at the iPhone 14 comes courtesy of notorious Apple leaker Jon Prosser, who released a swathe of renders – and an entire YouTube video – outlining the iPhone 14 range days ahead of the iPhone 13 release in September 2021. Prosser claims to have seen images of a prototype of the iPhone 14 Pro Max and worked with render artist Ian Zelbo to create the images, which seem to showcase an updated design.
Per Prosser and the renders, the iPhone 14 range could ditch the camera bump and offer a flush trio of cameras on the rear, made possible by increasing the overall thickness of the smartphone range.
That brings the design close to a merger between the iPhone 12 and the iPhone 4 – a comparison made stronger by the inclusion of circular volume controls, something not seen on the range since the iPhone 4 era.
It’s also the first iPhone in some time to have glass sit on top of the antenna bands, rather than have them protrude from the sides of the phone.
That chassis, according to Prosser, will be made from titanium – something we’d previously heard from analysts at JP Morgan Chase.
Though a variety of colours are depicted in the renders, those were chosen by Prosser and his team to help showcase the design. He does insist that the photos he saw were of a gold iPhone 14 Pro Max, but suggests that the shade may change by the time production comes along later this year.
However, more recent reports suggest a more familiar chassis is on the way, largely mirroring that of the iPhone 13 range.
Leaked CAD renders of the iPhone 14 Pro were shared via 91Mobiles in March 2021, allegedly sourced from industry sources. The renders depict the redesigned Face ID notch (covered more below) on the front, while the rest of the chassis looks identical to that of the iPhone 13 Pro.
Days later, leaker Max Weinbach posted images of alleged iPhone 14 Pro schematics on Twitter, providing more context to the leaked CAD renders released days before.
14 Pro and 14 Pro Max pic.twitter.com/39TMqVTFVc— Max Weinbach (@MaxWinebach) March 22, 2022
According to the schematics, we should expect a slightly larger camera bump - but still smaller than the 13 Pro Max - along with minimal changes to the chassis, measuring in at 0.1mm shorter and ever so slightly thinner than its predecessor.
Though the changes are minimal, it'll likely mean that iPhone 13 Pro cases won't be compatible with the 14 Pro - but we'll have to wait until launch to be sure.
Just weeks after the iPhone 14 Pro schematics appeared online, alleged renders of the ultra-premium iPhone 14 Pro Max surfaced via Twitter. Twitter user @VNchocoTaco has tweeted images of a CAD file depicting the top-end iPhone and threw in a few measurements too.
Here are the images of the cad file and full measurements of iPhone 14 Pro Max that I obtained. I will share more details about it in the coming newsletter. 🧵 pic.twitter.com/CTLLVOtgb7— ShrimpApplePro 🍤 (@VNchocoTaco) April 4, 2022
Per the leaked images, it looks like the iPhone 14 Pro Max will ditch the traditional Face ID notch for something more streamlined, and it'll have a larger camera cutout, but bigger design changes outlined by Jon Prosser seem to be missing.
It's said that the iPhone 14 Pro Max will measure in at 160.71 x 78.53 x 12.16mm, though the extra thickness is said to account for the larger camera bump on the rear - it shouldn't be that thick all over.
It has also been suggested that the bezel of the display will shrink from the 2.42mm of the iPhone 13 Pro Max to just 1.95mm, though just how much of an effect that'll have on the display experience is yet to be seen.
No more Face ID notch
Back in March 2021, Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo released predictions not only for the iPhone 13, but the iPhone 14 – though it was referred to as the 2022 iPhone, not specifically the 14.
In the note to investors, the analyst suggested that certain models of iPhone 14 could ditch the notch that houses the Face ID smarts. It has been present on every iPhone since the iPhone X, and although Apple shrank the unit by 20% on the iPhone 13, it’s apparently not done just yet.
According to Kuo, the Pro models will instead offer a "punch-hole" cutout for the front-facing camera while still keeping full Face ID functionality, offering an almost full-screen viewing experience. The analyst then doubled down on the claim in late September 2021, again suggesting that the Pro models will ditch the notch for a holepunch camera.
That was later backed up by notorious leaker Jon Prosser, who showcased a number of renders of what’s claimed to be the "iPhone 14 Pro Max" just days before the iPhone 13 was set to be revealed, depicting a centrally placed holepunch cutout.
Bloomberg's Mark Gurman also seems to think that Apple will ditch the notch for a hole punch camera in 2022, with Gurman suggesting a 'complete redesign' is on the way, and The Elec's unnamed industry sources also point towards a holepunch.
But while you might assume it's a circular hole punch, one leaker suggests otherwise. Leaker @dylandkt claims it'll instead be "pill shaped", and while he doesn't go into any more detail, it sounds like it'll be close to a dual-front facing camera setup like that of the Samsung Galaxy S10 Plus.
Without mention of a second camera, the extra space will likely be used for Face ID smarts which are said to be unaffected by the move away from the notch.
But what about a combination of the two? That's what display analyst Ross Young believes. Taking to Twitter, the analyst - with a 100% track record - predicts a combination of a circular hole punch and a pill-shaped cutout on the front of the iPhone 14 Pro and Pro Max. The leaker even showcased an image in the tweet, although it's an inverse view - the pill-shaped cutout is allegedly on the left, with the circular holepunch on the right.
We now believe Apple will have a hole + pill design on the iPhone 14 Pro and Pro Max models. The smaller hole will not be invisible...The two hole concept will be unique to Apple, like the notch, not similar to all the pill models from Huawei...Let's see those new renders pic.twitter.com/Udt8cTKzPZ— Ross Young (@DSCCRoss) January 12, 2022
Young also claims (in a now-deleted tweet) that the hole is said to house the Face ID dot projector while the pill cutout will house the front-facing camera and Face ID's infrared camera at a minimum.
9to5Mac sources suggest that the iPhone 14 Pro range could be slightly taller than iPhones before it to help accommodate that pill-shape cutout.
The hole + pill combination has also appeared in leaked CAD renders and schematics mentioned earlier, suggesting that Apple has indeed decided on the rather odd camera cutout.
Twitter leaker @MauriQHD has a slightly different take though; the leaker instead suggests that there will be no notch or holepunch camera, but instead slightly thicker bezels on all four sides that’ll completely house the front-facing camera and Face ID technology.
ProMotion might still be a Pro exclusive
One of the key new features of the iPhone 13 Pro and 13 Pro Max is the 120Hz ProMotion display, offering buttery smooth animations compared to the 60Hz display of the iPhone 13 and iPhone 13 Mini.
While some might've hoped that the upgraded tech would transition to the rest of the line with the iPhone 14 - like with the Sensor-Shift OIS that was exclusive to the iPhone 12 Pro Max before the iPhone 13 range - a report from The Elec suggests differently.
Citing unnamed supply chain sources, the South Korean outlet suggests that the 120Hz LTPO (Low Temperature Polycrystalline Oxide) OLED panels will be exclusive to the Pro models, while the standard models will use the same 60Hz LTPS (Low Temperature Polycrystalline Silicon) OLED panels as the 13 range.
However, an early 2022 prediction from analyst Jeff Pu seems to fly in the face of The Elec's claim. Instead, the analyst suggests that the entire iPhone 14 range will feature a 120Hz refresh rate, although with a less-established track record than other analysts, it's worth taking with a pinch of salt.
Camera improvements are almost a given when it comes to the yearly iPhone update, but the iPhone 14 Pro range is said to house something special; a new 1/1.3in 48Mp CMOS image sensor for the main wide-angle lens. What’s more impressive is that the new sensor could offer hybrid operating modes to improve pixel size and light-gathering capabilities.
Kuo believes that "the new 2H22 iPhone may support 48MP output and 12MP (four cells merge output mode) output simultaneously". Merging pixels to improve quality – also known as pixel binning – isn’t a new concept for Android users, but it'll be a first for the iPhone.
That’s not all either. Kuo claims that "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." For reference, the iPhone 13 pixels measure in at 1.7um, while the Pro line cranks that up to 1.9um.
Along with improved image quality, Kuo believes that it’ll also enable 8K video capture – a massive jump over 4K offered right now, though he doesn’t detail potential framerates.
Kuo reiterated the claim in late September, while also suggesting the changes would be exclusive to the "two high-end models".
The idea of a 48Mp snapper with 8K video capabilities has also been backed up by analysts at Haitong International Securities, and again more recently by analysts at TrendForce, lending more credence to the claim.
Apple's A15 Bionic at the heart of the iPhone 13 runs on an improved 5nm process, offering improvements to efficiency and power compared to the 5nm A14 Bionic – but changes aren't that dramatic compared to the A14 Bionic.
That’s set to change with the iPhone 14, however, according to a TrendForce analyst forecast.
The forecast, which came out in late 2020, claims that Apple’s 2022 iPhone range will be powered by a 4nm processor manufactured by TSMC, likely dubbed the A16 Bionic.
Switching to a narrower structure width will allow for more noticeable improvements to performance and efficiency, which should also have a knock-on effect on battery life – all welcome upgrades to the iPhone experience.
This is seemingly confirmed by a report from The Information, citing engineers familiar with the matter. The report suggests that TSMC isn't quite ready to ship even smaller 3nm chipsets with the iPhone 14, although it is still expected to begin ahead of its competitors.
That'll allegedly be paired with a boosted 8GB of RAM on the Pro models - according to Korean blog Naver citing unnamed sources, anyway. Given the fact that Apple tends to boost its RAM offering every two years, and it last got an upgrade with the iPhone 12 Pro range, there could be some truth to the claim - and it'll likely extend to the standard model too.
It's not the only source pointing towards an increase either; Haitong International Securities analyst Jeff Pu also suggests that the iPhone 14 Pro range will boast an increased 8GB of RAM.
Interestingly, a 9to5Mac report from March 2022 suggests that Apple might - for the first time ever - split the chipset offering between the standard and Pro models, with only the iPhone 14 Pro range getting the latest A16 Bionic.
The rumour suggests that the standard iPhone 14 range could instead sport a souped-up version of the A15 Bionic found in the iPhone 13, which could have an additional GPU core compared to the current offering. It's possible that Apple will brand it as the A15X, but this is yet to be confirmed.
The concept was backed up within days by Ming-Chi Kuo, who tweeted in mid-March 2022 that the iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Max would stick with the A15 chipset, lending more credence to the idea. It'd certainly make the Pro models look more 'pro', something Apple has had an issue with in recent years.
The first eSIM-only iPhone
Believe it or not, but Apple introduced eSIM functionality with the iPhone XS/XR back in 2018, and every iPhone since features the tech. For the unaware, it's essentially a digital SIM card that allows you to activate a plan without the need for a physical SIM card, and it'll work with over 100 carriers around the world - perfect for getting cheap data rates when holidaying if nothing else.
But while it has been an optional feature up until now, whispers suggest an eSIM-only iPhone could be on the way later this year.
The rumour comes from a MacRumors source that claimed Apple has advised US carriers to prepare for the launch of an eSIM-only smartphone by September 2022, suggesting that at least one model of iPhone 14 could lack the traditional nano-SIM tray.
However, analysts believe that while it is inevitable, it won't be a complete switchover. GlobalData analyst Emma Mohr-McClune suggests that Apple will likely offer an eSim-only variant of the iPhone 14 through its own storefront and carriers that want to support it alongside traditional nano-SIM variants, so don't ditch those SIM cards just yet.
What are you most looking forward to with the iPhone 14? Let us know on Twitter.