iPhone 15 camera rumor is bad news for iPhone 14

iPhone 14
(Image credit: Front Page Tech | Renders by Ian)

As the iPhone 14 reportedly undergoes engineering validation tests as it moves toward a fall launch, some of the phone’s features are coming into focus. In this case, it’s a matter of a feature that’s conspicuous by its apparent absence on the upcoming phone — a periscope lens.

That report comes from Jeff Pu, an analyst with Haitong International Securities in a research note seen by 9to5Mac. Pu claims that the iPhone 14 isn’t likely to use a periscope lens for its telephoto lens. That’s contrary to earlier reports about the iPhone 14’s camera, which had raised the possibility of a periscope lens for this year’s model.

Instead, Pu thinks that a periscope lens is more likely for the iPhone 15 Pro and Pro Max models coming in 2023. That matches a forecast by another Apple analyst, Ming-Chi Kuo.

Periscope lenses on phones, like the Huawei P40 Pro and the Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra, don’t protrude out of the body like they do on traditional cameras; instead, they make use of space inside the phone to work their magic. While traditional photo lenses require distance between the rear and front elements to zoom closer to the subject, periscope lenses orient the sensor vertically and use prisms to bend the light to achieve the same effect.

The cameras on the iPhone 14 Pro models could still feature improvements in other areas. Some rumors point to a 48MP main camera, a claim Pu echoes in his new report. Indeed, that larger sensor may be why leaked schematics have shown a larger camera module than what we’ve seen from the current iPhone.

Pu’s research note contains other iPhone details including a “larger screen (entry model),” which refers to the rumored iPhone 14 Max. Additionally, Pu also said that the A16 chip, meant for the iPhone 14 Pro models will feature a larger die size compared to A15, despite being built with a 4nm process.

Some other good news in Pu’s report — a recent coronavirus surge that triggered lockdowns near Shenzhen where the iPhone is assembled doesn’t appear to have slowed down Apple’s progress on the iPhone 14, since the upcoming phone has reached the engineering validation process.