iPhone 15 Pro could finally put Face ID under the display

iPhone 13 front camera close up
(Image credit: Future)

Edit (May 3): Apple could also be bringing its own 5G modem to the iPhone 15, according to fresh reporting.

All eyes are on the iPhone 14 series at the moment, but we're already hearing rumors about what the iPhone 15 range might have to offer — starting with under-display Face ID. 

That's according to sources speaking to Korean site The Elec, who say Apple could team up with Samsung to offer an under-display Face ID system in the iPhone 15 Pro. This design change would apparently see Face ID live underneath the screen, with only a single hole to give the front camera an unobstructed view.

If this sounds familiar, it’s because we’ve already seen rumors this might happen with the iPhone 14 Pro. However, more recently we’ve been hearing speculation that the next Pro iPhone will instead opt for two separate cutouts: A hole-punch cutout for the front camera, and a pill-shaped cutout for Face ID sensors.

According to The Elec, the iPhone 15 Pro could use the same technology employed in the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3. In that device, Samsung concealed a selfie camera under the display which, while usable, doesn’t offer the same level of quality as a hole-punch design. 

However, since Face ID doesn’t come with an expectation of picture quality, the screen being in the way shouldn’t make too much of an issue. All Apple would need to do is ensure that all the necessary light can pass through the screen, and that the phone could identify faces with the same level of security as unobscured Face ID sensors.

The Elec also claims that Samsung plans to use the technology on the Galaxy Z Fold 5, which would arrive sometime next year if all goes to plan; the Galaxy Z Fold 4 is expected in 2022. It’s not clear from the report whether this tech would be intended to improve Samsung’s under-display camera, or whether the company has plans to launch its own version of under-display Face ID.

Unfortunately, this rumor won't be verified any time soon, with the iPhone 15 range not expected until fall 2023. However, these aren't the first hints we've heard about the phone even at this early stage. 

For instance, there's speculation that the phone could finally ditch physical SIM cards, while other rumors claim that it could come with a periscope camera that would offer a major boost to optical zoom.

We'll bring you more on the iPhone 15, and iPhone 14 of course, as and when we hear it.

Tom Pritchard
UK Phones Editor

Tom is the Tom's Guide's UK Phones Editor, tackling the latest smartphone news and vocally expressing his opinions about upcoming features or changes. It's long way from his days as editor of Gizmodo UK, when pretty much everything was on the table. He’s usually found trying to squeeze another giant Lego set onto the shelf, draining very large cups of coffee, or complaining about how terrible his Smart TV is.