Apple iPhone 16 Pro tipped to get this major display upgrade

iPhone 16 Pro color leaks
(Image credit: @MajinBuOfficial)

Apple's recent Let Loose event has us all thinking about the new iPad Pro and iPad Air, but that doesn't mean we can't spare some time to start looking ahead to the 2024 iPhones. Especially given the latest leak that Apple could upgrade the iPhone 16 Pro with a significantly brighter screen.

As spotted by 9to5Mac, Weibo leaker Instant Digital claims Apple plans to increase the iPhone 16 Pro's brightness level by up to 20 percent more than its predecessor. The iPhone 16 Pro is set to come with a typical SDR (Standard Dynamic Range) brightness of 1,200 nits compared to the 1,000 nits supported with the iPhone 15 Pro. For reference, earlier iPhone generations maxed out at 1,000 nits of brightness for SDR, and 1,600 for HDR. 

Granted, the iPhone 16 Pro's brightness level of 1,200 nits would be in average use cases, but who among us couldn't stand to make their everyday browsing a little brighter? It remains unclear whether the bigger iPhone 16 Pro Max will see the same jump.

Swipe to scroll horizontally
Row 0 - Cell 0 iPhone 16 Pro (rumored)iPhone 15 Pro
Max brightness (SDR)1,2001,000
Max brightness (HDR)1,6001,600
Max brightness (outdoors)2,0002,000

At the same time, Apple is rumored to be sticking with the same Maximum HDR (High Dynamic Range) brightness level of 1,600 nits and maximum brightness level of 2,000 nits when the phone's outdoors. These specs first debuted on Apple's larger iPhone 13 Pro Max before becoming standard with the iPhone 14 Pro.

Still, it's possible that Apple could opt for an even brighter panel for the iPhone 16 Pro to stay competitive with the Google Pixel 8 Pro, which is rated to reach 1,600 nits with HDR brightness and 2,400 nits peak brightness under sunlight. Another recent rumor suggests the iPhone 16 Pro could get new panels supplied by Samsung that are more power-efficient, thanks to a switch from blue fluorescent technology to blue phosphorescence technology. Apple's upcoming flagship could also pack a brighter and bigger display, with the iPhone 16 Pro expected to bump up the size from 6.1 inches to 6.3 inches.

Of course, all of this remains speculation for now, as nothing's been confirmed officially by Apple. But that hasn’t stopped the rumor mill from churning out reports about possible new iPhone 16 Pro features like a Capture button that triggers the phone’s camera or the same tetraprism zoom lens that debuted on the iPhone 15 Pro Max this past fall. A high-end iPhone 16 Ultra model may be in the works, too.

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Alyse Stanley
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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.