iPhone 15 Pro Max's biggest new feature could mean it arrives late — here's why

iPhone 15 Pro Max renders by Alpha Tech
(Image credit: Alpha Tech)

A shipping delay for the iPhone 15 Pro Max (or iPhone 15 Ultra if you prefer) could see its launch date pushed to October, says a new analyst note seen by a 9to5Mac source.

All of this year's new iPhones, including the basic iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Pro,  are still thought to be getting a reveal at an Apple September event. However, the largest, most expensive model may only go up for sale a month or so later, rather than late September as usual, because of camera parts shortages.

Sony is, as usual, providing camera sensors for Apple's new iPhones, the report says, but production for one camera is running behind. And it just so happens that the troublesome snapper is the periscope telephoto camera that's been rumored as an iPhone 15 Pro Max/Ultra exclusive. This explains why the mystery analyst only predicts a delay for one of the four expected iPhone 15 models.

The periscope zoom camera would be a first for iPhones, and would enhance the level of optical magnification the phone it's installed on could achieve. Rather than a 3x maximum like an iPhone 14 Pro can achieve, this new camera could be able to zoom in up to 5 or 6 times, or even up to 10 times depending on which source you believe.

Apple's delayed iPhones before

Previous accounts have alleged an iPhone 15 delay of some variety was on the cards, but the cause and models affected differ between them. For instance, one claims it could be both Pro models facing a delay, and that display quality issues were the cause.

It's unusual for Apple to delay launching specific iPhone models, but it has happened before. Take last year, for example, when the iPhone 14, iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max all went on sale in September as expected, but the new iPhone 14 Plus didn't launch until October.

It's still looking like September 12 will be the day we see the iPhone 15 series officially for the first time, and if rumored features like the Action button and 3-nanometer A17 Bionic chipset on the Pro models, and iPhone 15 Dynamic Island notches for all models, are genuine, we'll be delighted. Still, perhaps ready yourself for a longer-than-expected wait if you decide to pre-order an iPhone 15 Pro Max.

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Richard Priday
Assistant Phones Editor

Richard is based in London, covering news, reviews and how-tos for phones, tablets, gaming, and whatever else people need advice on. Following on from his MA in Magazine Journalism at the University of Sheffield, he's also written for WIRED U.K., The Register and Creative Bloq. When not at work, he's likely thinking about how to brew the perfect cup of specialty coffee.