Apple’s rumored iPhone 14 Max could be my hot phone of 2022

iPhone 14 renders by Front Page Tech and Ian Zelbo
(Image credit: Ian Zelbo | Front Page Tech)

Update: Check out our early look at the iPhone 14 vs iPhone 14 Pro — get ready for the biggest differences in years. 

One of the biggest problems, in my humble opinion, with the iPhone 13 is its lack of a high refresh rate display. Unlike the 120Hz LTPO panel on the iPhone 13 Pro models, the standard and iPhone 13 mini are stuck at a glacial 60Hz; this is irritating as a lot of the best Android phones have 90Hz displays. 

But that could change with the rumored iPhone 14 Max, supposedly a larger variant of what will be the standard next-gen iPhone. While this phone isn’t likely to get the camera features of the iPhone 13 Pro models, it has been tipped to get a 120Hz display, at least according to The Elec’s supply chain sources. 

LG will supposedly be the supplier of these 120Hz LTPO displays, though no mention was made of the standard iPhone 14 getting such a screen. This would be odd as it would create further division in the next-gen iPhone range if one iPhone 14 has a 60Hz display while the other has a 120Hz panel alongside what’s expected to be a pair of Pro handsets; iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max. 

Speaking of the Pro phones, those have also been tipped to get 120Hz screens, which is no surprise as both current-gen iPhone 13 Pro models have high refresh rate displays. But the display for the iPhone 14 Pro will reportedly be made by Samsung, while the iPhone 14 Pro Max will also have access to LG-made displays. 

This all sounds like some supply chain complexities, no doubt with Apple trying to plan ahead for disruption in component production caused by the coronavirus pandemic. 

Nevertheless, this rumor has made the idea of an iPhone 14 Max a lot more appealing to me. 

120Hz iPhone 14 Max

iPhone 14

(Image credit: Front Page Tech | Renders by Ian)

Currently, I’m using the iPhone 13 Pro for work. It’s a great phone, and one of our picks for the best phones you can buy today, yet I’m not sure I’d get it for myself.

It's a tad pricey for a handset that still has a notch. And while the cameras are brilliant, I don’t find the addition of a telephoto camera the Pro phone brings to the table to be a compelling reason to get an iPhone 13 Pro over the standard iPhone 13.

However, after a couple of years using Android phones with high refresh rate displays, the iPhone 13's 60Hz display is simply too jarring to me to go back to.

But if Apple makes a keenly-priced iPhone with a pair of stellar rear cameras and a 120Hz display, I can see that being very appealing to me, as well as others; it could also be a cheaper way to get a big-screen iPhone without paying well over $1,000. Combined, those two features could make the iPhone 14 Max one of my most anticipated phones for 2022

One setback is that current rumors claim only the iPhone 14 Pro models will get a notch-free display, with Apple opting for a punch-hole selfie camera. But it’s early days for iPhone 14 rumors, so do take this with a degree of skepticism.

As for the overall forecast for the iPhone 14 range, you can expect to see a refreshed design — potentially one that reduces the size of the rear camera module — a form of under-display Touch ID, and camera upgrades seemingly more on the sensor front than camera count.

Given a September reveal is likely on the cards, we’ve got some time to wait before we get more concrete ideas about what upgrades the iPhone 14 will sport. In the meantime, it’s looking likely that the rumored iPhone SE 3 will arrive next year before the iPhone 14.

Roland Moore-Colyer

Roland Moore-Colyer a Managing Editor at Tom’s Guide with a focus on news, features and opinion articles. He often writes about gaming, phones, laptops and other bits of hardware; he’s also got an interest in cars. When not at his desk Roland can be found wandering around London, often with a look of curiosity on his face.