A15 Bionic iPhone 14 rumor gains steam; 2022 lineup may offer satellite capabilities

A15 Bionic iPhone 14 rumor gains steam, 2022 lineup may offer satellite capabilities
More evidence is emerging that this year's high-end Apple iPhone 14 Pro models and the regular models will differ in more ways than just their screens and cameras. Yesterday, trusted analyst Ming-Chi Kuo said that only the Pro models would get a new chip. 9to5Mac corroborates the news, while also adding that the satellite data transfer feature that was expected to come to the iPhone 13 will be included in this year's lineup.

The outlet has corroborated rumors that the 5.4-inches iPhone 13 mini will not be getting a successor. Instead, the iPhone 14 series will feature the 6.1-inches iPhone 14 and the 6.7-inches iPhone 14 Max, codenamed D27 and D28, respectively, and 6.1-inches and 6.7-inches iPhones 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max, internally known as the D73 and D74.

The Pro models are expected to have the same resolution as their predecessors, meaning the iPhone 14 Pro will have a 1170 x 2532 screen, and Pro Max's display will have a resolution of 1284 x 2778 pixels. 

Per today's scoop, the Pro variants will also have slightly taller displays than the outgoing models, which means they will have a different aspect ratio than the current variants' 19.5:9 ratio. This would give the phones a slimmer look, but we don't think Apple will copy Sony Xperia 1 III's 21:9 ratio, but who knows.

The alleged reason behind this design is the new dual pill and hole cutout setup that's expected to replace the notch on the iPhone 14 Pro and 14 Pro Max.

Only the iPhone 14 Pro and Pro Max will flaunt the new A16 Bionic chip

2013 was the last time that Apple divided its smartphone range according to the type of chip explicitly. Otherwise, if we pay attention to details, the A15 Bionic chip in the iPhone 13 Pro models has an extra GPU core. 

That said, an extra GPU core is not the same as a chip built on a new manufacturing process. The A15 Bionic is based on the 5nm process and the rumored A16 Bionic will reportedly be manufactured using the more advanced 4nm tech which should make it faster and more energy-efficient. 

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It's not clear why Apple is breaking from the decades-long tradition of outfitting all phones in a series with the same chip, but insiders such as Bloomberg's Mark Gurman have suggested it may have something to do with the supply shortage. 

It's not all gloom and doom for the regular models as the phones will likely have a minimum of 6GB of RAM, up from 4GB, but only the Pro variants are expected to feature the faster LPDDR 5 RAM tech. Previous rumors had said that Apple would bump up the maximum RAM to 8GB, but this again would only apply to the Pro models.

It's also not clear if iPhone 13 Pro's fluid 120Hz display will trickle down to the iPhone 14 and 14 Max, but what's fairly certain is that only the Pros will get a new 48MP camera that will help them outshine the best camera phones of 2022.

Lastly, today's report also says that the satellite communication feature that Apple has allegedly been working on since 2017 may arrive with this year's lineup. The system is internally known as "Stewie" and the company is said to be testing a prototype that can send a message over satellite, eliminating the need for cell service. 

The 2022 lineup will likely break cover in September.

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