iPhone 15 leaks have ramped up in recent weeks, with industry insiders reaching a consensus about Apple’s upgrades. But now one of the more interesting early leaks has surprisingly returned.
“It was confirmed today in two new supply chain reports from China that Apple’s iPhone 15 Pro will indeed replace the existing stainless steel frame with a titanium alloy frame,” the authoritative site reveals. Apple patent.
Titanium for the iPhone 15 Pro and Pro Max was heavily rumored in reports last year, but no more information was revealed in 2023, with the assumption that the cost would be prohibitive. But no longer. PatentlyApple states that titanium orders have now been placed by major Apple supplier Hon Hai Group for the iPhone 15 Pro production, and will be shared with its subsidiary Hong Zhun and FII.
And that’s something iPhone fans should be excited about. Yes, titanium is expensive ($35-50 per kg versus $1-1.50 per kg for stainless steel), and yes, it adds credence to multiple reports that the iPhone 15 Pro and Pro Max models will go up in price this year. However, the benefits are clear: titanium is just as strong as stainless steel at only 40% of its weight or 3-4 times stronger at the same weight.
The combination of the lighter iPhone with the added durability also makes sense. iPhones are some of the heaviest smartphones available, especially with their corresponding screen sizes. For example, the 6.5-inch iPhone 14 Pro Max weighs 240 grams (8.47 ounces) while the 6.6-inch Galaxy S23 Plus weighs 195 grams (6.88 ounces), and with rumors already circulating that Apple will increase iPhone sizes in 2024, no It can continue. The supposed 6.9-inch iPhone 16 Pro Max will be a brick tote.
Furthermore, PatentlyApple notes that this may be just the beginning of wider use of titanium in Apple devices, as the site has discovered several Apple patents for the use of titanium in Macbooks. Notably, Apple’s first titanium product is already on sale, the Apple Watch Ultra, as the company claims that “titanium strikes the perfect balance between weight, hardness, and wear resistance.”
Unfortunately, there is no indication that the iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus models will also receive a physical upgrade in this cycle. iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Plus use an aluminum body, and this is not expected to change for the next generation. Apple is expected to remove stainless steel from its entire iPhone lineup instead of bringing it to cheaper models.
Although it’s only months away from release, the iPhone 15 lineup has already been criticized for being a “modest” upgrade, with standard models largely mirroring the design of the iPhone 14 Pro, and iPhone 15 Pro models receiving modest camera and design upgrades. The move to titanium is unlikely to change that perception, but it could signal the start of a new era of ultra-durable and ultra-light Apple products.
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