iPhone 16 CAD leak shows off three big design changes compared to iPhone 15

Apple iPhone 15 review.
(Image credit: Future)

The iPhone 16's rumored design is in clearer focus than ever thanks to a new purported CAD image of the phone published to Twitter/X by leaker Majin Bu.

This latest image only shows one angle of the iPhone 16, but it gives us a good look at the new camera bump design. It's no longer a square that can fit diagonal cameras, but an iPhone X-like vertically-aligned pill that'll nearly fit the two expected camera lenses, with what we assume to be the flash module kicked out to the main back panel.

This has perhaps been done to visually differentiate this year's iPhone from the iPhone 13, iPhone 14 and iPhone 15, but also we hope it's in preparation for Apple adding Spatial video capabilities to the standard iPhone 16. 

Capturing this VR-first video format requires the main and ultrawide cameras to work together, something that the iPhone 15 Pro with its vertically aligned main/ultrawide cameras can manage already. But having those cameras diagonal to one another seems to mean the iPhone 15 regular and iPhone 15 Plus are incapable of this right now.

An alleged CAD drawing of the iPhone 16, from the back

(Image credit: Majin Bu / X)

Looking to the left side of this image, we can see the power button and a slight indent in the phone's chassis where the Capture button, Apple's alleged new capacitive key for all iPhones 16s, will appear. While we know the name of the new button, its function is unclear beyond it being related to taking photos and videos. We're suspecting some kind of shutter button for easier shooting, similar to phones like the Sony Xperia 1 V.

There's also possibly a glimpse of the Action button on the right side, although at this level it's difficult to tell if it is a button or just the familiar mute switch poking out. It's been claimed that this iPhone 15 Pro-exclusive button will make it to all iPhone 16 models, giving all buyers the option to set shortcut functions as they please.

Majin Bu, the X/Twitter user who published this CAD image, is the tipster behind other iPhone 16 design leaks, including project drawings, physical mock-ups and concept images. From their contribution alone, we have a pretty strong idea of what at least Apple's basic 2024 iPhone may look like.

While we're expecting many more iPhone leaks to appear in the coming months, we won't know anything for sure until this September in all likelihood. For now, bookmark our iPhone 16, iPhone 16 Pro and iPhone 16 Pro Max hubs, as we'll continue to update these pages with all the latest rumors as we find them. And check out our iPhone 16 vs iPhone 15 face-off to see how else the new phone could differ from the current model.

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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.