If you're considering an iPhone 15 Pro Max as your big phone purchase this fall, I have some bad news — it sounds like you're going to have to set aside more than you might have anticipated to buy Apple's top-of-the-line phone. That's because there's more evidence an iPhone 15 price hike is in the works, at least for the higher-end models.
Jeff Pu, an analyst at Haitong International Securities of Hong Kong, has raised the possibility of iPhone 15 price increases in the past. But in his latest research note spotted by MacRumors, Pu specifically calls out the iPhone 15 Pro Max, claiming it will cost more than the iPhone 14 Pro Max it's replacing.
The latest report doesn't say how much more the iPhone 15 Pro Max's price would be, compared to the $1,099 starting price Apple currently charges for the iPhone 14 Pro Max. Pu has also raised the possibility of higher iPhone 15 Pro prices in previous notes, but without a specific dollar amount.
iPhone 15 Pro Max price: Here's what it could cost
The most common assumption among iPhone 15 rumor mongers is that Apple would hike the cost of its Pro models by $100 when the iPhone 15 arrives in the fall. But some sources have cited a potential $200 price hike for the iPhone 15 Pro Max, which would make that device the most expensive handset outside of foldables like the Galaxy Z Fold 4 and Google Pixel Fold.
For our part, we're more inclined to think that the $100 price increase is the more believable rumor. That would bump the cost of the iPhone 15 Pro Max to $1,199 — the same amount Samsung charges for a Galaxy S23 Ultra. And that's the phone most people compare the top of the line iPhone with. (That includes us — here's our iPhone 15 Pro Max vs. Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra comparison for an early look at how the next big flagships from Apple and Samsung might compare.)
Will the iPhone 15 Pro Max be worth it?
Based on iPhone 15 rumors, Apple sounds like it's certainly positioning the iPhone 15 Pro Max to take the sting out of a more expensive model. Like the other phones in the iPhone 15 lineup, the Pro Max model is expected to replace the traditional Lightning port with USB-C. Both iPhone 15 Pro models are tipped to feature titanium frames — which are lighter, tougher and more expensive than stainless steel — and draw their power from a new 3nm A17 Bionic chipset.
In addition, the iPhone 15 Pro Max may be in line for some exclusive features not even found on the smaller Pro model. Many Apple observers expect the iPhone 15 Pro Max to adapt a periscope-style telephoto lens that allows it to better compete with the Galaxy S23 Ultra when zooming in on subjects. Currently, the S23 Ultra uses 3x and 10x lenses while the iPhone 14 Pro Max tops out at a 3x optical zoom.
Whether that's enough to justify a bigger price tag will be a question we get an answer to this fall when the iPhone 15 is expected to arrive. And there's always the possibility that iPhone prices remain the same — remember that prior to the iPhone 14 launch, across-the-board hikes were expected that didn't materialize in the U.S. Given the number of iPhone 15 price hike rumors, though, it's hard to see history repeating itself.