Apple iPhone 16 Pro Max release date predictions, price, specs, and expected upgrades

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The iPhone 16 Pro Max will be the next big thing hailing from Cupertino, the super-advanced flagship that will take the crown from the iPhone 15 Pro Max

Like most previous iPhones, the iPhone 16 Pro Max will arrive alongside the rest of the iPhone 16 family sometime in September 2024. However, it's just too early for the rumor mill to have kicked into high gear, so we don't have too much intel on what the next top iPhone will improve on.  

iPhone 16 Pro Max summary:
  • Brighter and larger 6.86-inch display
  • Second-gen 3nm Apple A18 Pro chip
  • Improved cameras
  • Sturdier titanium design
  • New capacitive "Capture" button
  • September 2024 release w/ unchanged or slightly higher price tag

Latest iPhone 16 Pro Max news

iPhone 16 Pro Max news

iPhone 16 Pro Max release date

  • Probable announcement: September 10, 2024 (Tuesday)
  • Probable pre-orders start date: September 13, 2023 (Friday)
  • Probable market release: September 20, 2024 (Friday)

  • Expected Timeline and Probable Dates: The iPhone 16 Pro Max would most likely be announced on September 10, 2024, which happens to be the second Tuesday of September, Apple's favorite day to announce its new iPhones.

  • A couple of days after the official iPhone 16 Pro Max announcement, Apple will kick off the pre-orders for its upcoming phones. This will likely happen on Friday, September 13, 2024. Some ten days after the phone's announcement and a week after the pre-orders have kicked off, the iPhone 16 Pro Max will officially hit the shelves, most probably on September 20, 2024.

  • Typical Release Schedule:Historically, most iPhone announcements have taken place on the second Tuesday of September. It's not a rule set in stone, so some slight yearly deviations have certainly happened, like the slightly delayed iPhone 12 launch in 2020 and the iPhone 14's slightly earlier announcement, which took place on the first Wednesday of September. 

  • Significance of Release: This launch weekend is not just a major event for Apple; it's also a key indicator of consumer interest and market trends for the holiday season. Based on an opening weekend, one can make a fairly accurate prediction about the lifetime sales of a given iPhone family.

  • Why This Matters: Understanding Apple's release cycle can help you plan your purchase, especially if you're looking to upgrade to the latest model as soon as it hits the shelves.

* - probable dates

iPhone 16 Pro Max price

  • Current Expectations: There are two possibilities with the iPhone 16 Pro Max: it will either stay on the same pricing as its predecessor or score a price hike. As a reminder, the iPhone 15 Pro Max's entry-level 256GB version starts at $1,199.

  • Possible Price Increase: With each passing year, we've always heard rumors that Apple will be jacking up prices of its iPhone Pro Max, and despite those, Cupertino has generally kept the $1,199 price tag largely unchanged. That was especially true last year, when just about everyone was convinced that Apple will surely increase the prices of the Pro models. There's always that possibility. However, there's also the outlook of a slight price increase, and the more time passes, the more probable that one is. There could potentially be a $50-$100 price increase to all storage tiers on the iPhone 16 Pro Max in the worst-case scenario. 

  • What This Means For You: If the iPhone 16 Pro Max gets pricier, it will have repercussions for the whole industry, potentially leading to higher prices for other rival flagships as well. But it could also mean that you might not be able to afford the new device.

* - anticipated prices

iPhone 16 Pro Max name

  • No Surprises Expected: Despite last year's rumors that the iPhone 15 Pro Max might actually be called iPhone 15 Ultra on account of how many improvements it would score, this hearsay did not materialize. There hasn't been any serious murmur about an iPhone 16 Ultra this year, so the possibility of a device with such a name is rather slim. 

  • What This Means For You: Apple will be avoiding consumer confusion this way, which is a crucial aspect. Although an iPhone 16 Ultra might sound exciting, long-time users that are familiar with the Pro Max nomenclature would feel more "at home" if Apple doesn't change the name. 

iPhone 16 Pro Max camera

  • What's new: It's too early to have any specific information about the camera of the iPhone 16 Pro Max, but we don't expect the setup to be much different from the one present on the iPhone 15 Pro Max. That one debuted the tetraprism telephoto camera that offers 5x optical zoom (120mm), which is the longest telephoto ever fitted on an iPhone. A year before that, Apple introduced a 48MP main camera to the Pro models, so all cameras except for the ultra-wide one have scored a trove of improvements in the past two years.

  • Why you'll love it: An improved camera setup on the iPhone 16 Pro Max will be able to squeeze out better image quality than its predecessor, even though the new phone will likely employ the same hardware, so you will capture even more breathtaking photos. Apple will probably achieve that by employing much better image-processing algorithms delivered by the new Apple A18 Pro chip that will make an appearance on the iPhone 16 Pro Max. 

  • Optical excellence: The iPhone 16 Pro Max will retain both the super-sharp 48MP main camera and the 5X tetraprism-powered telephoto camera that debuted with the iPhone 15 Pro Max. The latter brings largely unprecedented zooming capabilities to the iPhone lineup and allows you to capture crystal-clear distant shots. Although many phones offer longer-zooming periscope cameras, the 5X telephoto camera on the iPhone 16 Pro Max will hit a very decent balance between quality and usability.

  • Thinner and lighter lenses: A certain rumor calls for the use of thinner and lighter molded glass lenses for the cameras of the iPhone 16 Pro Max. This allows Apple to not only save some minuscule weight, but also improve the optical qualities and improve the quality of the cameras themselves. Molded glass is crafted by pouring molten glass into molds and cooling it rapidly, which results in thin but strong glass. 

  • An exciting possibility: Some hard-to-believe rumors call for a ultra-long 12.5X 300mm "super-periscope" camera on the iPhone 16 Pro Max. This one will best most Android devices out right now, but we don't feel that this rumor is believable at all and would take it with a grain of salt. 

iPhone 16 Pro Max storage

  • Current Status: With the iPhone 15 Pro Max, Apple ditched the 128GB entry-level storage version from the roster so that the device featured with 256GB in its base version. On the other end of the spectrum, the device was still available with up to a terabyte of on-board storage. 

  • Storage Expectations: We are mostly certain that the iPhone 16 Pro Max will come in 256GB, 512GB, and 1TB versions as well, mirroring its predecessor for the most part. Apple usually sticks with a new storage tier scheme for a couple of generations after a major change, so we can safely expect that the 128GB version won't be back on a Pro Max device. 

iPhone 16 Pro Max expected storage versions:
  • 256 GB
  • 512 GB
  • 1 TB
  • 2TB* (rumored)

iPhone 16 Pro Max Design Enhancements

  • Current Status: No super-concrete leaks yet, but exciting possibilities are on the horizon. However, we are certain that the iPhone 16 Pro Max will double down on the titanium design that debuted with the iPhone 15 Pro/iPhone 15 Pro Max

  • Sturdier build: As per some very early rumors, Apple is likely looking into ways to reinforce the structure of the iPhone 16 Pro Max to mitigate the possibility of the glass rear panel shattering when bent with sufficient force. That's precisely what happened with the iPhone 15 Pro Max, and the overly tough titanium frame which didn't flex enough in unison with the glass panel led to some shattered iPhones. 

  • What This Means for You: Anticipate a fresh look with innovative features that could enhance your smartphone experience. Expect a sturdier build and enhanced functionality, making these models more robust and user-friendly.

  • Rumored New Addition: A novelty on the iPhone 16 Pro Max could be the addition of a new capacitive "Capture" button situated on the frame of the phone. Dubbed the "Capture" button, this one could be used as yet another way to take photos and videos by default, but could probably be customizable similarly to the Action Button that debuted with the iPhone 15 Pro/Pro Max.

  • Your Advantage: Capture moments faster and more intuitively than ever, adding convenience to your photography and videography. This feature could be a little redundant, as iPhones currently have plenty of shortcuts and ways to get into the camera app and quickly take a picture or a video. 

  • Confirmed Features: The Action Button and the USB Type-C port are surely making a comeback. The Action Button might grow in size in comparison with the first iteration that debuted on the iPhone 15 Pro/Pro Max. At the same time, the new USB Type-C port will surely be a staple of the iPhone 16 Pro Max. Hopefully, Apple will consider boosting the charging speeds, as the port technically allows for higher power throughput than the Lightning port.

What could the iPhone 16 Pro Max look like?

Based on the existing rumors and expectations, this is what the iPhone 16 Pro Max might look like next to its brethren from the rest of the iPhone 16 lineup. These renders were created by us and represent what the iPhone 16 Pro Max might look like based on the current rumors as of late 2023. 

iPhone 16 Pro Max display

  • Larger Display: Through the use of slimmer bezels and revamped design, the iPhone 16 Pro Max will likely boast a larger 6.86-inch display, noticeably larger than the 6.7-inch one that we've grown accustomed to on previous iPhone Pro Max devices. 

  • Why This Excites: Larger screens mean more immersive viewing, whether you’re streaming, gaming, or browsing, so maximizing screen real estate is always great, especially if it doesn't come at the expense of a significantly larger device. A larger display will also allow Apple to better fare against its rivals, most notably Samsung, whose flagships routinely push 6.8 inches of display size. 

  • Familiar Design: The Dynamic Island punch-hole is most certainly sticking around on the iPhone 16 Pro Max; it will be a good few years before we see Apple move to other less obtrusive ways to integrate the front camera and Face ID camera module into the display. 

  • Possible Brightness Improvements: These days, peak brightness seems to be the new front on which phone manufacturers deliver punches. iPhones are already bright enough, but lag behind devices like the Google Pixel 8 Pro and potentially the upcoming Galaxy S24 Ultra and OnePlus 12, all of which will be able to deliver around more than 2,400 nits of local peak brightness. Rumor has it that Apple could outfit its next Pro iPhones, the iPhone 16 Pro Max included, with an even brighter display.

  • Display Technology: The iPhone 16 Pro Max will surely support ProMotion refresh rate, which allows the display to automatically and dynamically switch between 1 and 120Hz depending on the on-screen content and context, for a very smooth and rewarding interface experience. 

  • Impact on Usage: Expect energy-efficient, vibrant displays across the board, with Pro models offering the added benefit of adaptive refresh rates for dynamic content display.

iPhone 16 Pro Max battery

  • Anticipation: Supposedly, the iPhone 16 Pro Max will boast a battery in the same ballpark as its predecessor, so we can expect something near 4,422mAh. Provided that the inner hardware doesn't take up too much extra space, we might theoretically see a slight bump in battery capacity. 

  • How This Benefits You: Simple––a larger battery usually results in a better battery life. Even if the battery doesn't grow in size, the phone might deliver better battery life in comparison with its predecessor, thanks to the hopefully improved efficiency of the chipset. 

Expected Battery Size

*-anticipated battery size

  • What It Means for You: Battery life is one of the most important aspects of Battery sizes are among the last features of an iPhone that leak out, which is why we can only speculate what battery is landing on the iPhone 16 Pro Max. Last year's iPhone 15 Pro Max set an absolute record for iPhones as far as battery size is considered, as it's packing a 4,422mAh battery.

Charging Speed Evolution

  • Likely Improvements: When it comes to charging, iPhones are slower to adopt faster charging speeds. Still, we are hopeful that Apple could adopt faster charging, as the company was mostly restricted by the limited power throughput of the Lightning port. Apple's Lightning supported up to 12W/2.4A of power throughput, while the USB Type-C port that debuted on Cupertino's wares with the iPhone 15 series can theoretically allow for much greater power throughput, up to 100W/3A or 240W/5A.

  • Real-World Advantage: Faster charging is, naturally, always welcome, as it saves your precious time and reduces the amount of downtime you get out of your device. iPhones have always charged more slowly in comparison with their direct Android rivals. The reason for that might be Apple erring on the safe side when it comes to battery health. 

  • Will there be a charger in the box? The iPhone 16 Pro Max won't come with a charger in the box. Apple stopped including chargers with the iPhone 12 generation and instead moved onto slim shipping boxes. We doubt that this decision will ever be repealed, so we don't hold our breath that a charger will make it inside the iPhone 16 Pro Max. 

iPhone 16 Pro Max features and software

  • Guaranteed update: The iPhone 16 Pro Max will arrive with iOS 18 on board. Aside from iOS 18, the iPhone 16 Pro Max will receive iOS 19, iOS 20, iOS 21, iOS 22, and iOS 23 as well. So far, little is known about the upcoming iOS 18 in particular, but we have some ideas and speculation as to what it might bring to the table.  

  • What's exciting about it: iOS 18 will likely deliver a revamp regarding AI and LLMs (Large Language Models), which are direly needed as far as the company's Siri assistant is considered. Then again, iOS 18 might also focus on improving bugs and ironing out the kinks that previous iOS updates introduced. Both iOS 16 and iOS 17 were heavy on new features, mostly on the customization side, so iOS 18 would likely be a more "boring" update with little in terms of new features. 

iOS 18 Preview at WWDC 2024

  • Event spotlight: The next major software version will be officially revealed at the Apple WWDC'24 developer summit. We suppose that this one will take place in early June 2024. Apple usually hosts its software events at this part of the year. 

  • Why It Matters: Word on the street is that generative AI will seemingly play a large part of iOS 18's feature list, with Apple reportedly investing heavily into AI servers. The company's in-house AJAX LLM (Large Language Model) is reportedly as capable as ChatGPT3.5. This one would probably be used to super-charge the AI capabilities of Siri, which is lags behind the general competition when it comes to intelligence, capabilities, and overall utility. 

Current Software Innovations of iOS 17

  • StandBy mode for a smart display-like experience.
  • Dynamic contact posters for incoming calls.
  • Live Voicemail and FaceTime voicemail features.
  • New Message functionalities including Check In and Stickers.
  • Interactive Widgets for a more engaging home screen.
  • Improved AirDrop capabilities.

Long-term support

  • Extended Update Cycle: The iPhone 16 Pro Max should receive at least 5 years of software support, so the device will receive all major and minor iOS updates well until the end of the decade, and likely further than that. 

  • Longevity Promise: As we mentioned, iPhone 16 Pro Max users may expect to receive iOS versions until iOS 23. Such a prolonged commitment ensures that your upcoming iPhone 16 Pro Max will be up-to-date and secure until the end of the decade, maximizing your investment.

iPhone 16 Pro Max hardware and specs

  • Better Thermal Management: Additionally, Apple is also said to be looking into ways to further improve the internal thermal management system on its next iPhone, possibly through the use of graphene. This would allow it to better dissipate the heat accumulated by Apple's latest 3nm Apple Pro chips, which tend to run hotter for some in select situations. 

  • What's In For You: It could also deliver better power efficiency and therefore better battery life, two always welcome improvements to any iPhone generation. The iPhone 15 Pro Max was one of the most adept devices released in 2023 as far as performance goes, so Apple already has a pretty strong foundation on which to build upon. 

  • Memory Outlook: As far as RAM and other hardware features of the iPhone 16 Pro Max, we are likely looking at 8GB of RAM at least on the upcoming flagship. iOS uses RAM differently than Android, so even with such a lowly amount of RAM, the iPhone 16 Pro Max would be competitive against its Android rivals. Storage-wise, we already mentioned that the phone will likely come with 256G, 512GB, and 1TB of available storage. 

Should I wait for the iPhone 16 Pro Max?

When to Consider Waiting for the iPhone 16 Pro Max

  • For Those with Older Models: You should wait for the iPhone 16 Pro Max if you've held up on upgrading to a newer iPhone in the past few years and are using a device that's nearing the end of its life. These include the iPhone 8 series, iPhone Xs series, and to some extent the iPhone 11 series. 

  • Why It Makes Sense: Upgrading from any of those to the upcoming iPhone 16 Pro Max will be more than a major improvement in terms of overall features and general value. Of course, if you're using an older regular iPhone, then the next top Apple flagship might entice you. 

When It's Better Not to Wait for the iPhone 16 Pro Max

  • For Recent Upgraders: you've recently upgraded to or purchased a fairly recent iPhone, especially of the Pro Max flavor. Those with iPhone 15 Pro Max, iPhone 14 Pro Max, and even iPhone 13 Pro Max devices will likely be hardly swayed to upgrade to the 2024 iteration of the flagship. 

  • Reasoning Behind This: Those devices will be more than capable and adequate for years to come, so if you're willing to maximize the value of your existing device, you should stick with your existing device for another year or so. 

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