iPhone 15 Pro design tipped by leaked cases — here are the changes

iPhone 15 Pro renders by Technizo
(Image credit: Technizo)

Rumor has it Apple has several design tweaks planned for its upcoming iPhone 15 Pro. New pictures purportedly of the handset's case have surfaced, showing power and volume buttons positioned slightly lower than on the iPhone 14 Pro as well as a slightly larger bottom cutout. That's likely to accommodate a USB-C charging port as Apple seems poised to finally ditch the Lightning port with the iPhone 15 series.

This week, leakers posted images of pre-release accessories for the iPhone 15 Pro on Weibo and Twitter, as spotted by MacRumors. Along with repositioned power and volume buttons, the cases reveal a cutout for the new dedicated mute button rumored to replace the classic mute switch set above the volume buttons. The cutout looks smaller than that of the mute switch, presumably because a button doesn't need as much real estate as a switch since you'll no longer have to grip it from the side. 

This same mute button is rumored to pull double duty as an action button like that found on the Apple Watch Ultra. It's predicted to perform a similar function, letting users run customizable shortcuts as well as activating and deactivating mute. The Apple Watch Ultra's action button can start workouts, function as a stopwatch, serve as a shortcut to the Dive feature, activate the watch's Wayport and Backtrack functions, turn on the watch's flashlight or perform other customizable shortcuts.

iPhone 15 Pro: Larger cameras coming?

Another iPhone 15 Pro case shared by Twitter user Majin Bu hinted at the model sporting larger camera lenses and a bigger microphone. Interestingly, this case also appears to feature a cutout for a solid-state volume rocker as opposed to dedicated volume buttons. Early iPhone 15 Pro leaks pointed to this design change as well, though it's since been rumored that Apple will hold off on debuting solid-state buttons until 2024 with the iPhone 16 Pro instead

We're not sure if it will happen in this generation or not, but Apple seems poised to move away from mechanical buttons that depress to haptic feedback. The logic follows that this would result in a more durable design overall for its high-end smartphone. Other rumored design updates for the iPhone 15 Pro series include a titanium chassis for a stronger yet lighter Pro iPhone, slightly curved edges and slimmed-down bezels. However, the iPhone 15 Pro Max is tipped to feature a more powerful 6x telephoto lens

The iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone Pro Max are expected to release this fall at the Apple September event, with one analyst giving the date of September 22/23 as the specific retail launch day. Until then though, we'll be reporting on any convincing leaks that emerge, and rounding them up in our iPhone 15iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max hubs for easy access.

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Alyse Stanley
News Editor

Alyse Stanley is a news editor at Tom’s Guide overseeing weekend coverage and writing about the latest in tech, gaming and entertainment. Prior to joining Tom’s Guide, Alyse worked as an editor for the Washington Post’s sunsetted video game section, Launcher. She previously led Gizmodo’s weekend news desk, where she covered breaking tech news — everything from the latest spec rumors and gadget launches to social media policy and cybersecurity threats.  She has also written game reviews and features as a freelance reporter for outlets like Polygon, Unwinnable, and Rock, Paper, Shotgun. She’s a big fan of horror movies, cartoons, and miniature painting.