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Dhaka Tribune

iPhone 15: Last year’s 14 pro in a new package

If you were hoping for a totally new iPhone 15 design, well, that’s not happening this year

Update : 13 Sep 2023, 05:52 PM

Apple unveiled its new iPhone lineup on Tuesday, with a whole host of other products all featuring the change to USB-C after a long battle with the European Union.

Over the next few weeks we will look into the iPhone 15, 15 pro, Apple Watch and Earpods a little more closely. This article will focus on the baseline iPhone 15 and 15 plus.

The iPhone 15 is priced starting at $799 for a 128GB model, and the iPhone 15 Plus starts at $899 for a 128GB version. Both will be available on September 22, with pre orders starting this Friday.

The iPhone 15 and the iPhone 15 Plus are sharing the same colors, just like they do each year. There is the black, green, pastel yellow, patel pink, and pastel blue as available colors for the base iPhone 15 models.

If you were hoping for a totally new iPhone 15 design, well, that’s not happening this year. This year’s iPhone looks largely the same as the iPhone 14 before it, with the iPhone 15 and 15 Plus continuing to use 6.1-inch and 6.7-inch displays, respectively, reports the verge.

All models of the iPhone 15 will also come with the Dynamic Island. That’s the pill-shaped cutout that first debuted on the iPhone 14 Pro and Pro Max, providing a new way to see certain notifications and interact with apps. The iPhone 15 also has an OLED Super Retina display, which supports Dolby Vision content with 1,600 nits of brightness. The peak brightness of this display is 2,000 nits in sunlight, double that of the iPhone 14.

The biggest noticeable upgrade to the iPhone 15 and 15 Plus outside of the visible USB-C and Dynamic Island changes is an improved camera system. The main camera sensor is moving to a 48-megapixel one, up from the 12-megapixel one found on the previous iPhone 14.

There’s also a 12-megapixel ultrawide that’s capable of telephoto, and improvements to the portrait mode mean you won’t have to manually switch to portrait mode anymore. Whether or not this is an IOS 17 feature that will be available in older compatible iPhones, we will have to wait and see.

Apple is also improving the night mode, Live Photos, and action mode in the iPhone 15 camera. And if you’re a fan of selfies, the front camera has autofocus and portrait lighting.

Inside the iPhone 15, Apple is also upgrading the chip to the A16, the same one found in last year’s iPhone 14 Pro models. Apple is also promising “all-day battery life” with the iPhone 15 thanks to a larger battery.

The iPhone 15 also includes a second-generation ultra wideband chip, just like the new Apple Watch Series 9. This improves connectivity to other devices that are further away, and it can enable precision finding in Find My so you can find friends easier if they have the latest iPhone 15 models.

Last year’s iPhone 14 preserved much of the iPhone 13’s design, too. There was no Mini option last year, and one of the bigger iPhone 14 additions was Emergency SOS, an emergency messaging system that works via communication satellites when you’re out of range of a cell signal.

Apple is launching its latest iPhone 15 models alongside a new Apple Watch Series 9, which includes an upgraded chip with improved GPU performance, a second-generation ultra wideband chip, a “double-tap” feature, and more.

The update to Apple's line comes as the Silicon Valley tech giant faces declining sales of iPhones, with premium prices pushing customers to delay switching to newer models.

The firm is also caught up in diplomatic turbulence between the United States and China, with reports saying the communist government is banning civil servants from using its phones.

"Apple needed to deliver more than just minor updates to get people excited about buying new products," Techsponential analyst Avi Greengart said in a demo area at the event.

"I think they delivered on that with lots of updates, some of them not so minor."

Along with improvements to iPhone cameras and chips, Apple said that the iPhone 15, which includes four varieties, would have internal components that simplify repair and a new frame that allows the back glass to be easily replaced.

The openness to repair is an unexpected turnaround.

Apple last month said it was endorsing passage of a California law requiring major gadget makers to enable people to fix their devices without taking them back to companies.

Easier repair

Like any other company, Apple would prefer to boast about shiny new features rather than new charging ports.

But most analysts agreed that the switch to USB-C was going to be the main headline.

EU policymakers said the rule would simplify the lives of Europeans and do away with a mountain of obsolete chargers.

To make the transition easier, Apple also released new cables, including a USB-C to Lightning Adapter for $29.99.

"Your average consumer is going to be annoyed that they have to change their cables, but I don't think that's going to impact sales," said analyst Greengart.

"Anyone who has multiple tech devices already has USB-C everywhere."

In the recently ended quarter, Apple suffered a 2.4% drop in iPhone sales, which account for nearly half of total revenues.

The market seemed little impressed with Apple's announcement and shares were down 1.7% as the end of the formal trading day in New York neared.

Apple shares were battered last week following reports of significant Chinese restrictions on iPhones at government offices and state-backed entities.

Apple reported $15.8 billion in revenues from China in the most recent quarter, nearly 20% of total revenues. Executives pointed to the uptick in China sales in a period when overall sales fell.

Wedbush analyst Dan Ives estimated that a Chinese government ban would affect less than 500,000 iPhones of roughly 45 million projected to be sold in the country in the next year. 

"We believe despite the loud noise Apple has seen massive share gains in China smartphone market," Ives said.

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