iPhone 15, 15 Plus, 15 Pro e 15 Pro Max they are finally in our hands. We’ve been trying them for a few days and maybe the time has come to clarify some things. Why yes, after the days that have passed, after the return from Cupertino but above all after the millions of views made on social media with a short video dedicated to the iPhone 15 Pro and which you can see here, thousands of comments have arrived, all of the same nature… and which made me think a lot.
“Apple has stopped innovating” users say
Many say: “Apple no longer innovates”, “they are always the same”, “they always cost more”. Basically, the public’s complaints center on the fact that there are no longer the innovations of the past, the ones that make one cry out for a miracle, the ones that are usually expected – for some strange reason – from Apple.
We will talk about all these things but, I want to say it right away, this year they cost the family of iPhone 15 costs less than last year. From €50 to €130 less based on the model chosen
A long reflection published on our Youtube channel and dedicated to the new iPhone 15 (Plus) and 15 Pro (Max)
However, I would like to start from an assumption: technology is so high and refined that it is increasingly difficult to innovate with a wow effect. Certainly the new A17 Pro processor – which we find exclusively on the iPhone 15 Pro and Pro max – has a lot to say but they are refinements, often not easily visible to the naked eye but which work in the background and are capable of great things.
iPhone 15 and 15 Plus: what’s the point of the year?
The reasoning that many are making is: why not buy an iPhone 14 Pro rather than choosing iPhone 15 in the standard version? The reasoning might make sense, try following me.
The iPhone 15 is, in many ways, last year’s 14 Pro with a host of software improvements.
In addition to maintaining the same dimensions – this is now Apple tradition – we have the same processor, the A16 Bionic, the arrival of the Dynamic Island, the display with a peak brightness of 2000 nits and the 48 megapixel camera sensor with quad pixel technology which should offer brighter and more detailed photos. There is also Type-C which definitively ends the lightning era.
However, we remain orphans of the third camera, the 3x telephoto sensor, which continues to be the prerogative of the Pro models this year too. Somehow Apple must differentiate the family.
And precisely the third camera is the reason why many may prefer the iPhone 14 Pro even if this year we have the crop of the main camera which guarantees us 2x. To be honest, I use 2x more often than 3x. You therefore understand well that it is often a matter of taste and needs.
In any case, the iPhone 14 Pro can be found on Amazon starting from €1049 while the iPhone 15 on the Apple website starts from €979. For now, for €70 more you have a one-year-old “old” phone but a little more versatile on the photographic front. Even if in the end the end… we are there.
The curious thing is that the previous models are still present on the Apple website – which usually doesn’t happen – but not all of them. For example, the 14 is not available in the pro version but only in the standard version… probably because Apple itself is aware of this reasoning.
Obviously – I will never stop saying it – it depends on your needs. And then, net of this reasoning, iPhone 15 is certainly a nice device with a series of new features.
iPhone 15: what’s new?
As we said at the beginning of this article, iPhone 15 presents some new features, albeit well hidden from view: it has a more refined design, with slightly more rounded edges and a matte backcover (in 5 new colours). The processor that for iPhone 14 was an A15 Bionic and is now an A16 Bionic. So more power.
The arrival of Type-C, so you finally use one cable for everything. Then there is the presence of the second generation Ultrawide Band which you can use to find friends and Apple devices more easily and more precisely. The 48-megapixel main camera with quad-pixel sensor that takes photos at 24 megapixels will also not be in RAW mode. In short, the generational leap is there even if it is not easily seen. Now the question is: do these innovations revolutionize daily use? Probably not.
All this naturally also applies to the iPhone 15 Plus which only has a larger display and a larger battery but otherwise it is the same. Even in the colors.
Among other things, the pink color we are testing for the iPhone 15 Plus is very nice. The blue on the other hand seems a little washed out, tending a little too much towards white.
iPhone 15 Pro and Pro Max: why choose them?
In my opinion, with this generation of iPhone there are two possibilities. Last year I would have said only one. Follow the reasoning. There is one thing that in my opinion has remained unchanged: an iPhone 15 Pro or Pro Max is undoubtedly the right choice for a photographer, a videomaker or in any case someone who creates content or who wants very high quality photos and videos without buying a camera (because he wants to put just one thing in his pocket or backpack and go).
The photographic sector is in fact, as we said before for the 14 Pro, more varied. This year things get a little more complicated. First of all, the sensor is the same, the same 48 megapixel but with some upgrades: essentially it is brighter. The 3 nanometer processor, however, is new and makes all the difference in the world. Because it is more powerful and the images are processed differently.
But not only that: there is a difference between Pro and Pro Max.
Il 15 Pro Max has 5x optical zoom 12 megapixel while the Pro remains stuck at 3x, always 12 megapixels. For the Pro Max, all this translates into 7 different focal lengths: 13 mm – which is the ultra-wide angle, the main sensor – also used for macros – and which can be used at 24 mm, 28 mm, 35 mm and 48 mm – and 48 mm is the 2x – and finally the 120 mm which corresponds to the 5x.
Some are crops from the main sensor – we all agree – but for those who do photography, knowing the focal length is very important.
You can therefore get something more with the Pro Max by counting on the ProRAW to then act in post production and take shots richer in detail.
Then on the video side they are the same because we have the same stabilization, 4K at 60 fps, HDR, ProRES with log recording on external support… (this is thanks to the presence of Type-C which allows data transfer up to 10 GIGABIT)
But here, if you are an image professional I suggest the Pro Max.
If you don’t care about 5x, you can still do well with 3x, even for portraits.
We all know that Android smartphones have proven that the optical zoom can easily reach 10x. Let’s not beat around the bush, I also often use the Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra, I sometimes use the 10X (which is wonderful for the record) but I have very few opportunities to shoot with this focal length. So according to Apple, the 5x is more usable every day. ù
Am I switching from iPhone 14 Pro to 15 Pro? This year yes
So… going back to the initial question, evaluate the 15 Pro and Pro Max if you work with photos and videos.
Is it worth the upgrade over the 14 Pro and 14 Pro Max? Well, actually for me yes.
It’s not a complete upheaval, but there are some new features that make sense to those who work there.
Clearly it then depends on what you do specifically, on where you are now, on what you are looking for for your new smartphone. The usual personal variables I would say but I’m happy with the transition.
However, there is a second reason for choosing the Pro: gaming. That’s not something I thought I’d ever say about the iPhone. L’A17 Prowhich is the new chip of the Pro models, focuses heavily on graphics performance, so much so as to allow the ray tracing, a technology that allows for a realistic rendering of light. It seems like a small thing but this technique is usually associated with relatively recent video cards and this is because the computing power required is quite a lot. This iPhone therefore has everything you need to manage ray tracing.
And also to allow you to play Assassin’s Creed Mirage, Resident Evil Village or other AAA console games. Obviously I don’t know how many people will play these titles on the iPhone but I think it helps to make you understand how much power the new processor packs. Because it is thanks to what you play at this level that you can have videos and photos of the highest quality and much more.
The Pro models also still have the exclusive ProMotion, i.e. the 120 Hz refresh rate for a smoother use and gaming experience.
So yes, if you love video games, the Pro models are certainly more interesting than the “basic” ones.
Then there are new features that we haven’t talked about yet because I don’t think they make a huge difference in the choice, at least in my opinion. The first is the material. We switched to Titanium like the Watch Ultra. This allows you to keep the weight down but increases resistance. The new iPhone 15 Pro weighs 19 grams less than before. Numerically they might seem like a trifle but trust me, when you put them in your hand, you can really feel the difference.
On the Titanium issue, however, we reserve the right to tell you something more during the review phase because we too are trying to unravel this novelty.
The design is that of the basic models while I find the colors a little less cheerful even if from what Apple told us, the colors were chosen to “celebrate” the arrival of titanium among the new materials that make up the smartphone.
Of course there is the…