iPhone 16 just tipped for price hike — here's why

iPhone 15 Pro Max and iPhone 15 Pro cameras
(Image credit: Future)

There was a lot of talk about a possible iPhone 15 Pro price hike this year, especially given reports that the latest iPhones were noticeably more expensive to produce. While buyers managed to get away without unreasonable price increases, we may not be so lucky with the iPhone 16. And it could all be the iPhone 15’s fault.

According to Nikkei Asia, record high component prices are responsible for a 12% increase in the cost of producing an iPhone 15 Pro Max — for a total of $558. Apparently the tetra-prism telephoto camera costs $30 all by itself, while the new titanium frame was $50 — 43% higher than stainless steel. Meanwhile, the A17 Pro chipset costs $130, 27% higher than the A16 bionic.

The other iPhone 15 models weren’t immune to this either, despite having less impressive components. The phone apparently costs $423 to manufacture, 16% higher than the iPhone 14. The iPhone 15 Plus reportedly costs $442, while the iPhone 15 Pro apparently cost $523 — respective increases of 10% and 8%.

But rather than increasing prices across the board, Nikkei and Tokyo-based research company Formalhaut Terchno Solutions believes that Apple simply absorbed the costs. Clearly sacrificing some of the bottom line was more valuable than risking potential sales.

The closest we got to an actual price increase was Apple scrapping the 128GB iPhone 15 Pro Max. Instead the phone’s base model came with 256GB, and cost the same $1,199 as the 256GB iPhone 14 Pro Max model.

Unfortunately, Nikkei and Fomalhaut Techno Solutions don’t believe this is something Apple can continue to do in the long term. Especially if component prices stay at the record highs Apple experienced during iPhone 15 production. The iPhone is Apple’s flagship product, and is responsible for over 50% of its revenue in 2022. 

Continual reductions in the amount of money they bring in is ultimately bad for Apple’s finances. So if things continue the way they have been doing, those prices are going to have to go up. And it may happen as early as 2024 if this report is to be believed.

Of course, this is only a prediction of what could happen, and at this stage there's no guarantee that it definitely will. But considering the sheer number of rumors suggesting a $100-$200 price hike for the iPhone 15 Pro series this year, odds are that a price hike may be coming sooner than we'd really like.

We're just going to have to wait and see what happens, but in the meantime you can check out all the latest news and rumors in our iPhone 16 hub. 

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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.