A top-spec iPhone 15 Pro Max could start as high as $1,300, as Chinese outlet Economic Daily News lends further weight to the rumors that the iPhone 15 series could see a price increase of 10% to 20%.
So that could mean the iPhone 15 starts at $899, rising by $100 from the iPhone 14’s base price of $799, with the iPhone 15 Pro potentially rising by somewhere between $100 and $200, which would see it go from $999 for the iPhone 14 Pro to $1,100 or $1,200.
At the highest end of the next-generation iPhone range, we could see the Max model rise from the $1,599 you pay for a 1TB iPhone 14 Pro Max to $1,800. That’s more expensive than even the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4; admittedly that’s for the base model with the top-end unit hitting $2,159.
If this price hike does happen, then the iPhone 15 Pro Max could be the most expensive iPhone ever made, and one of the most expensive non-folding phones around. The potential reason for such a rise looks set to be an increase in manufacturing costs with inflation added in for good measure. And as Apple tends not to sell its products at a loss, we can expect those increased costs to be passed onto customers.
A $100 increase for the non-Pro iPhones could be easily swallowed, especially as they are tipped to get the Dynamic Island, alongside other upgrades like access to the A16 Bionic chip. And as the U.S. avoided the price increase that hit the iPhone 14 range in the U.K. and other nations, the $100 price rise for the iPhone 15 would seem inevitable.
However, paying up to an extra $200 for an iPhone 15 Pro could sting even the most staunch Apple fans.
A $1,300 iPhone 15 Pro Max? Ouch!
The iPhone 15 Pro and 15 Pro Max aren’t set to bring in a radical design change over that seen with the iPhone 14 Pro models; rounded edges have been tipped but the jury is still out on those. We’re likely to see the Dynamic Island display remain, with said screen sporting a 120Hz refresh rate. There was some expectation of solid-state buttons on the iPhone 15 Pros but that rumor has since been shot down.
USB-C connectivity seems like a lock, finally giving the iPhone 15 series the same connection standard as the best Android phones. And notable camera improvements seem in the cards for the iPhone 15 Pro Max, with a 6x periscope zoom camera tipped, joining a rumored improved LiDAR sensor. We can also expect a performance boost in the form of the A17 Bionic chip.
But the question would be whether these claimed upgrades could be worth an extra $200.
Given this is all rumor and speculation, we may have to reserve judgment. But the iPhone 14 Pro Max is already one of the best phones around, with a camera that can trade blows with the Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra, our pick for the best camera phone.
There’s always room for improvement, and Apple manages to make each iPhone generation better than the last one. But we seem to be at a time when upgrades are incremental, so paying 20% more for additions that aren’t likely to move the smartphone needle by much would be hard to swallow.
We'll likely have to wait until September before we get any official word from Apple, as that’s when we expect the iPhone 15 release date. Hopefully, Apple will have some smartphone surprises up its sleeve, as otherwise the most exciting product from Cupertino looks set to be the Vision Pro, an AR/VR headset that’s almost certainly out of reach for most people.