Apple unveiled the new iPhone 15 series on September 12, 2023, and the new lineup includes the new iPhone 15, iPhone 15 Plus, iPhone 15 Pro, and iPhone 15 Pro Max flagship phones. While Apple announced a dozen new features during its live keynote, there are a lot of things that didn’t get the attention they deserved and needed, so we combined them all into one place to help you find them all.
Some new features are hardware-related and limited to the iPhone 15 Pro models, while others will be available for the standard iPhone 15 models, too. There are plenty of new features, so let’s dig in and see everything the latest iPhones have to offer.
8 iPhone 15 Series: Memory
Apple doesn’t usually tell us the amount of memory that can be found in its iPhones and iPads. Leaks and rumors speculated that the iPhone 15 and iPhone 5 Plus would remain with 6GB, while the latest Pro models would receive 8GB (up from 6GB fron the iPhone 14 Pro series) of memory. As it turns out, the rumors were true, and the latest iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max flagships come with 8GB of RAM, as confirmed by @aaronp613 (via MacRumors)
iPhone 15 Plus
iPhone 15 Pro
iPhone 15 Pro Max
7 USB Type-C port and versions
The latest iPhone 15 series finally comes with USB Type-C ports, marking this as a first on an iPhone. Apple was forced to equip its latest devices to comply with the latest European regulations, but there are a few things you might not know about.
The iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus are limited to USB 2 charging and transfer speeds. While we might have a common and a standard port on the iPhone 15 series, the standard models will be limited to the same 20W charging speeds, and 480 megabits per second transfer speed limitations as older iPhone models with Lightning ports. This is a major letdown, but we’re happy to at least see the new port on the new devices, making charging and transferring files slightly easier.
On the other hand, the iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max come with USB 3 charging and transfer speeds that’ll provide up to 10 gigabit per second transfer speeds, and up to 30W charging (power adapter sold separately). The new Pro models will also support display output, enabling users to see their content on the big screen.
Additionally, all iPhone 15 smartphones can now charge Apple Watches and AirPods by connecting them to the devices. This will provide a backup option for anyone who finds themselves low on charge, out in the middle of nowhere.
6 iPhone 15 Pro models get Wi-Fi 6E
The iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max are the first iPhones in the lineup to receive support for the faster and more reliable Wi-Fi 6E. The new connectivity option will allow the Pro models to connect to 6Ghz bands that offer faster speeds, lower latency, and a more pleasant experience with less interference. Apple has already added the Wi-Fi 6E connectivity features to the latest iPad Pro tablets, 14 and 16-inch MacBook Pro laptops, as well as the Mac mini, Mac Studio, and Mac Pro computers.
5 Thread Network
The latest iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max devices now support the Thread mesh networking protocol. The standard iPhone 15 models aren’t supported. The Thread protocol enables compatible devices to be controlled by the new iPhone 15 Pro series of devices, including smart home products, smart locks, mesh routers, smart lights and sensors, smart plugs, smart displays, and so much more.
4 iPhone 15 Pro Max: 5x optical zoom
While all the new iPhones benefitted from the improved low-light enhancements, only the iPhone 15 Pro Max received a brand-new camera sensor. The device comes with a new 12MP telephoto sensor that enables 5x optical zoom, and 25x digital zoom. The camera uses 120mm lens with f/2.8, and it captures impressive results from farther away.
While other Android phones come with a dedicated periscope telephoto sensor, Apple decided to use a tetraprism design that enables such zooming capability. It’s the most Apple has ever offered on an iPhone, and while it falls behind the competition, it’s still great to see. Sadly, the standard iPhone 15 Pro lacks this feature and will be limited to the larger 15 Pro Max only.
3 iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus: Telephoto camera features
The standard iPhone 15 and 15 Plus have a dual rear camera setup consisting of a 48MP primary camera and a 12MP ultrawide. During the announcement, Apple revealed that the new smartphones would now also feature a 2x telephoto option in the Camera app, enabling users to take photos farther away.
The new telephoto feature relies on the 48MP sensor to crop in and capture photos from a distance without degrading the quality. Apple says this isn’t digital trickery, but some computation is involved in keeping the image sharp and detailed. This marks the first time 2x zoom is available on a non-Pro device, and the iPhone 15 will offer 0.5x, 1x, and 2x options.
2 iPhone 15 Pro Series: Customizable Action Button
Apple removed the alert slider, and replaced it with a single button. This is now called the Action Button, and it allows users to change how it functions upon a simple or a long-press. The standard iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus retain the usual alert slider, and only the Pro models will benefit from the additional features and the physical button.
Users can Press and hold to switch between ring and silence modes, and users will also be able to customize the single press to start a voice memory, launch the camera, activate live speech, or run a shortcut action.
1 Improved Ultra Wideband (UWB)
Apple unveiled a new second-generation Ultra Wideband (UWB) chip that will allow other devices with the same chip to be located farther away. The new iPhone 15 series will enable users to find friends in crowds, and lost items more precisely with higher accuracy.
Apple demonstrated the new chip by navigating a user to their friend in a crowded space, and the feature will be useful at concerts, train stations, markets, and other venues. The feature was previously only available for objects, and this move will allow every iPhone user to track down friends and family members, wherever they are.
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The iPhone 15 comes with a 6.1-inch OLED display with the new Dynamic Island, a dual camera setup, new colors, and a USB Type-C port. It’s powered by the Apple A16 Bionic chip, and it’s the most affordable high-end iPhone you can get your hands on today.
iPhone 15 Plus
The iPhone 15 Plus is larger than the standard iPhone 15. It comes with a 6.7-inch OLED display, a dual camera setup, new colors, and a USB Type-C port. It’s powered by the Apple A16 Bionic chip, and it’s the best and most affordable large iPhone you can get your hands on today.
iPhone 15 Pro
The iPhone 15 Pro is the new Pro series flagship from Apple. It’s equipped with the new Apple A17 Pro chipset and 8GB of RAM. It comes in new colors, and it has an even more powerful camera setup and a refined design.
iPhone 15 Pro Max
The iPhone 15 Pro Max is the latest and the greatest smartphone in Apple’s lineup. The smartphone is powered by the latest Apple A17 Pro chipset, coupled with 8GB of RAM. It has a more refined Titanium chassis that makes it lighter and more comfortable, and it features a new periscope telephoto camera.