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iPhone 16 Pro: what to expect from Apple's fall 2024 flagship phone

iPhone 16 Pro rumor roundup

Apple will announce the iPhone 16 Pro lineup during the fall 2024 Apple Event, and there are some changes coming. Here's what the rumor mill has to say and what we think it looks like.

Rumors surrounding the iPhone 16 lineup suggest Apple will continue to evolve its differentiation between pro and non-pro models. Photography features make up a significant portion of the rumors, but some hints about potential design changes have also leaked.

Apple has likely finalized what's coming in every iPhone model as production ramps up. However, rumors tend to arrive weeks or months after the information is generated internally, leading to last-minute changes in what is expected.

Here's what we know so far, updated on April 30.

iPhone 16 Pro design rumors

Currently, it appears as though Apple plans to maintain the current two-tiered system for iPhones. The standard iPhone and iPhone Plus will feature nearly identical specs but different screen sizes, while the pro models will have additional premium features.

Two iPhone 16 Pro renders side by side, one facing down with a tan color, one facing up with a wallpaper showing the AppleInsider logo
iPhone 16 Pro external designs won't change much

Both pro phones in the lineup will allegedly get a bump up in size. The iPhone 16 Pro will boast a 6.27-inch display (159.31 mm). The iPhone 16 Pro Max comes in at 6.85 inches (174.06 mm).

Majin Bu, a leaker with a shaky track record, has also suggested that the iPhone 16 Pro will come in two colorways: Desert Yellow and Cement Gray.

By March 26, a Weibo post claimed the Pro palette could be Space Black, White, Gray, and Rose, with Blue removed from the iPhone 15 Pro's range.

A few days later, on March 29, the casing rumors offered that an improved manufacturing process could change the titanium model to have a more polished look.

On April 3, the color change rumors continued, with the proposal on Weibo that Apple could use the same color-infusing method of the iPhone 15 and Plus in its Pro line. Color could be infused into the back glass, and through a dual-ion exchange process and a nanocrystalline particle polish, it could have an etched textured matte finish.

iPhone 16 Pro renders showing rose, silver, titanium, and black models
iPhone 16 Pro could have more saturated colors

The Action button could be added to the standard iPhone 16 models. Rumors fluctuated around whether the Action button would be capacitive or mechanical, but ultimately landed on mechanical, if a little larger.

The iPhone 16 Pro and iPhone 16 Pro Max could see some changes to the external case design or, more specifically, the buttons. Apple is expected to add an additional button called the Capture button, but more on that in the photography section.

Two iPhone 16 Pro renders laying atop each other, one facing down with a tan color, one facing up with a red wallpaper
iPhone 16 Pro rumors suggest there will be new buttons

Outside of button changes and slight size increases, the iPhone 16 lineup will likely look incredibly similar to the iPhone 15 lineup it replaces. Apple rarely performs significant design changes, so expect flat sides and a Dynamic Island on all models.

iPhone 16 Pro photography upgrades

The iPhone 15 Pro Max is currently the only model in the iPhone range with a Tetraprism lens. This lens improves the telephoto lens's focal length from 3x to 5x the Main Camera, translating to 120 mm.

A rendered iPhone 16 Pro with a tan colored back and large camera bump
iPhone 16 Pro is rumored to have improved camera systems

While the iPhone 15 Pro doesn't have this feature, there is a possibility that the iPhone 16 Pro might include the Tetraprism lens. A supply chain report from Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo doubles down on this rumor.

Multiple rumors corroborate the potential size increase for pro iPhone models, which would provide enough space for the Tetraprism lens.

According to a recent leak, the triple-camera setup on the iPhone 16 Pro may include another 48-megapixel sensor. Specifically, the rumor claims that Apple will add in a 48-megapixel ultra-wide-angle lens.

Two iPhone 16 Pro renders with one facing down with a tan color, the other facing up with a dark wallpaper.
iPhone 16 Pro could have a 48MP Ultra Wide Camera

Apple's push for a higher resolution Ultra Wide Camera would benefit photos taken with the 0.5x mode or macro mode, but there's likely a more important reason for the upgrade — spatial video capture. Shooting 3D video with an iPhone relies on the Ultra Wide Camera and Main Camera, taking the former to 48MP up from 12MP would make a significant difference.

Continuing the trend of camera upgrades, the iPhone 16 Pro could use molded glass lenses to reduce camera bump thickness and weight while increasing magnification distance.

Two rendered iPhone 16 Pros, one facing away with a tan back and large camera bump, one facing forward showing a red wallpaper
iPhone 16 Pro could have a reduced camera bump thanks to new build techniques

Standard iPhones have seen multiple camera spec upgrades in recent years, and iPhone 15 increased the Main Camera to 48MP. So, Apple likely has little planned beyond one rumored change.

The camera bump on the standard iPhones could move back to a vertical configuration rather than diagonal. This would allow standard iPhone users to capture spatial video for Apple Vision Pro.

While not a lens or camera sensor rumor, one from April 15 via leaker Yeuz1122 offered that a lens coating could improve your shots. Using Atomic Layer Deposition (ALD), the technique produces a layer just a few nanometers thick that can be applied precisely and evenly to lenses, such as curved lenses.

This is the equivalent of adding a filter, which could reduce flaring in some situations. However, by using the technique, it eliminates the risk of ghosting from adding more lens elements and physical filters to an arrangement.

The Capture button — or buttons?

Leaked CAD drawings suggest that the iPhone 16 Pro could feature a new Capture button and an enlarged Action Button. The same render shows that the iPhone 16 Pro could be slightly larger than its predecessor.

The bottom half of a rendered iPhone 16 Pro shows a new button on the right side
iPhone 16 Pro could feature a new Capture button

The Capture button is rumored to be located below the sleep/wake button on the right side of the iPhone. The mmWave antenna is currently located there, so it would need to move to the opposite side under the volume buttons.

Rumors have danced around exactly how Apple would configure the button. Like the Action button before it, rumors suggested Apple would make it capacitive and force sensitive, but those rumors died out.

A report has claimed that the Capture button may be mechanical. This would allow users to swipe to adjust zoom levels, and then a half-press would focus the shot.

On March 26, a leaked photo showed one accessory maker's take on the extra button. The shot showed a black bumper with a clear rear section, and a section cut out for the proposed Capture button.

Dummy iPhone 16 and iPhone 16 Pro units, 3D-printed, also seemingly showed what the Capture button could look like on the iPhone itself on the same day. At least, if the models are accurate.

Other iPhone 16 Pro rumors

There's not much left to say about iPhone 16 Pro beyond the obvious. There's some debate about which processor the standard models will use.

A rendered iPhone 16 Pro laying face down on a wooden table
iPhone 16 Pro could be a significant upgrade if everything rumored is released

The existence of the A17 Pro suggests there could be an A17 meant for the iPhone 16. Or, to realign the numbering, Apple could use an A18 for the standard models and A18 Pro for iPhone 16 Pro models.

A separate chip-focused rumor repeated the idea of A18 and A18 Pro for 2024 iPhones. Perhaps Apple believes the chips need to be named similarly to keep customers from thinking they are getting an outdated device.

As far as storage goes, some rumors have suggested that the iPhone 16 Pro could double the maximum storage of its predecessor, up to 2TB. The same rumor corroborated another report that suggested the model may also get higher-density, slower QLC flash memory.

The iPhone 16 lineup is expected to be revealed at an Apple event in early September 2024. Pricing should remain similar, with standard models starting at $799 and pro models starting at $1,199.