As expected, at today’s “Wanderlust” event, Apple announced the iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus, featuring what the company says is an industry-first color-infused back glass with a textured matte finish, and a new contoured edge on the aluminum enclosure.
Design with advanced display
Available in 6.1-inch and 6.7-inch display sizes, the iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus feature the Dynamic Island, a way to interact with important alerts and Live Activities. For example, the experience fluidly expands and adapts so users can see the next direction in Maps; control music; and, with third-party app integrations, get real-time updates on food delivery, ride sharing, sports scores, travel plans, and more.
The iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus will be available in five stunning new colors: black, blue, green, yellow, and pink.
The Super Retina XDR display is great for watching content, streaming Apple Fitness+ workouts, and playing games, according to Kaiann Drance, Apple’s vice president of Worldwide iPhone Product Marketing. Peak HDR brightness now reaches up to 1600 nits so HDR photos and videos look better than ever. And when it is sunny, peak outdoorbrightness reaches up to 2000 nits — twice as bright as the previous generation.
Both the iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus feature a new look. For the first time in a smartphone, color is infused throughout the back glass, creating five beautiful colors, says Drance. The back glass is strengthened with an optimized dual-ion exchange process before being polished with nanocrystalline particles and etched to create a textured matte finish.
A new contoured edge on the aerospace-grade aluminum enclosure is designed to feel even nicer in users’ hands, and the Ceramic Shield front cover continues to be tougher than any other smartphone glass, per Apple.
The iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus boast an advanced camera system. The 48MP Main camera is designed to allow users to shoot sharp photos and videos while capturing fine details, with a quad-pixel sensor and 100 percent Focus Pixels for fast autofocus.
Using the power of computational photography, the Main camera gives users a new 24MP super-high-resolution default, offering incredible image quality at a practical file size ideal for storing and sharing, says Drance. By intelligently integrating hardware and software, an additional 2x Telephoto option gives users three optical-quality zoom levels — 0.5x, 1x, 2x — for the first time on an iPhone dual-camera system.
Apple says that next-generation portraits on iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus feature sharper detail, more vivid colors, and improved low-light performance. For the first time, users can take portraits without having to switch to Portrait mode. When there’s a person, dog, or cat in the frame, or when a user taps to focus, iPhone automatically captures depth information, so users can turn photos into portraits later in the Photos app on an iPhone, iPad, or Mac.
For greater creative control, users can also adjust the focus point after the photo has been taken. Shooting at night gets better with improvements to Night mode, including sharper details and more vivid colors. When lighting is bright or uneven, new Smart HDR captures subjects and the background with more true-to-life renderings of skin tones, while ensuring photos have brighter highlights, richer midtones, and deeper shadows when viewed in the Photos app.
This advanced HDR rendering is also available to third-party apps, so images can look even better when shared online, according to Drance. These improvements benefit the 48MP Main camera, Ultra Wide camera, and TrueDepth front camera.
A16 Bionic chip
The A16 Bionic chip boasts two high-performance cores that purportedly use 20% less power. With four high-efficiency cores, the 6-core CPU is faster than the previous generation.
Apple says the 5-core GPU has 50% more memory bandwidth for smooth graphics when streaming videos and playing games. A new 16-core Neural Engine is capable of nearly 17 trillion operations per second, enabling even faster machine learning computations for features like Live Voicemail transcriptions in iOS 17 and third-party app experiences — all while protecting critical privacy and security features using the Secure Enclave.
The iPhone 15 lineup offers critical safety capabilities to provide assistance, including Crash Detection3 and Emergency SOS via satellite. Currently available in 14 countries and regions on three continents, Emergency SOS via satellite will come to Spain and Switzerland later this month.
Building on this satellite infrastructure, the iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus introduce Roadside Assistance via satellite. Beginning in the U.S., when a user has car trouble and cellular and Wi-Fi coverage aren’t available, they can now connect to AAA, the country’s largest roadside assistance provider.
Roadside Assistance via satellite can connect users to AAA if they have car trouble while outside of cellular and Wi-Fi coverage.
An interface, including a short questionnaire to capture important details, will transmit the information via satellite so AAA can message with the user directly and dispatch help to their exact location. Access to Roadside Assistance via satellite will be included for free for two years. Service is covered according to AAA membership, but is also available separately for nonmembers.
The iPhone 15 lineup offers convenient new ways to charge, find friends in busy places, and stay connected while traveling. As predicted, both models use a USB‑C connector, allowing the same cable to charge am iPhone, Mac, iPad, and the updated AirPods Pro (2nd generation). Users can also charge AirPods or Apple Watch directly from the iPhone with the USB‑C connector. Both models support MagSafe and future Qi2 chargers for wireless charging.
iPhone 15 users can charge the updated AirPods Pro (2nd generation) or Apple Watch right from their iPhone with the new USB-C connector.
Both the iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus feature the second-generation Ultra Wideband chip, enabling two iPhone devices with this chip to connect at three times the range as before. This opens up a new way to use Precision Finding for Find My friends, so iPhone 15 users can share their location and find each other, even in crowds. Apple says that Precision Finding is built with the same privacy protections that users have come to trust in Find My.
The iPhone and the Environment
As Apple continues to work toward its 2030 goal of making every product carbon neutral — from design to manufacturing to customer use — the company is prioritizing clean electricity across the entire supply chain and designing products with recycled and other low-carbon materials.
The iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus now use even more recycled content, with 100% recycled cobalt in the battery and 100% recycled copper in the main logic board, copper wire in the Taptic Engine, and copper foil in the inductive charger in MagSafe — all firsts for the iPhone.
Both models also include 75% recycled aluminum in the enclosure, 100% recycled rare earth elements in all magnets, and 100% recycled gold in the USB‑C connector as well as the gold plating and tin soldering in multiple printed circuit boards. Over 99 percent of the packaging is fiber-based, bringing Apple closer to its goal of completely removing plastic from its packaging by 2025.
To further reduce impact on the planet, Apple says it will no longer use leather in any new Apple products, including iPhone accessories. Apple is introducing a new FineWoven Case with MagSafe and FineWoven Wallet with MagSafe, made from a microtwill with a soft, suedelike feel. The material is made from 68% post-consumer recycled content and reportedly has significantly lower carbon emissions compared to leather.
Pricing and availability
- The iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus will be available in pink, yellow, green, blue, and black in 128GB, 256GB, and 512GB storage capacities, starting at US$799 or $33.29 per month, and $899 or $37.45 per month, respectively.
- Apple offers ways to save and upgrade to the latest iPhone. Customers in the U.S. can get $200-$650 in credit when they trade in iPhone 11 or later and upgrade to iPhone 15 or iPhone 15 Plus by visiting the Apple Store Online, or at an Apple Store location. To see what their device is worth and for terms and conditions, customers can visit apple.com/shop/trade-in.
- Customers can get iPhone 15 for as low as $0 per month when they trade in an iPhone 11 or later with select U.S. carriers. For eligibility requirements and more details, see apple.com/shop/buy-iphone/carrier-offers.
- Customers in more than 40 countries and regions, including Australia, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Japan, Mexico, the UAE, the U.K., and the U.S., will be able to pre-order iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus beginning at 5 a.m. PDT this Friday, September 15, with availability beginning Friday, September 22.
- The iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus will be available in Macao, Malaysia, Türkiye, Vietnam, and 17 other countries and regions beginning Friday, September 29.
- FineWoven Wallet with MagSafe and FineWoven Case with MagSafe will both be available for $59 in five new colors for the iPhone 15 lineup: black, taupe, mulberry, pacific blue, and evergreen. In addition to an iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus Clear Case, available for $49, a Silicone Case with MagSafe will be available for $49 in black, storm blue, clay, light pink, guava, orange sorbet, cypress, and winter blue.
- iOS 17 will be available as a free software update on Monday, September 18.
- Customers who purchase an iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus will receive three free months of Apple Arcade and Apple Fitness+ with a new subscription.