The iPhone 14 Pro could get massive 48-megapixel camera upgrade

iPhone 14 rendered image with triple camera array


Megapixels the iPhone 14 Pro camera might have.

Jon Prosser x RendersByIan

Though still a year away, a new report from one Apple Analyst, Jeff Pu, suggests Apple is planning to give the iPhone 14 Pro a 48-megapixel camera upgrade. For those keeping track, the iPhone 6S released in 2015 was the first iPhone with a 12-megapixel camera, and Apple has stuck with the same resolution for six consecutive years.

Huge sensor — According to Pu (via MacRumors), this new sensor could be exclusive to the iPhone 14 Pro (14 Pro and 14 Pro Max if Apple continues using the same nomenclature). Pu’s report corroborates an earlier claim from another analyst, TF International Securities’ Ming-Chi Kuo.

The 48-megapixel sensor is expected to be a high-end feature found on iPhone Pro models. Jon Prosser x RendersByIan

That four-fold increase in megapixels will no doubt improve iPhone photography beyond what’s currently capable — the iPhone is long overdue for a resolution increase. Pu also speculates that the iPhone 14 Pros will feature a 12-megapixel ultra-wide lens and 12-megapixel telephoto lens. No resolution upgrade for those cameras.

According to Kuo’s report from April, the new camera could shoot images at 48 and 12 megapixels simultaneously. The latter will be done via a method called “four cells merge output mode” which essentially groups pixels in fours to output a high-resolution 12-megapixel image. If true, this would allow the new sensor’s pixel size, which is believed to be 1.25um, to jump to 2.5um, allowing for more detailed images even in low-light conditions. Kuo says the pixels, which are larger than the iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 13 Pro, as well as current Android phones, would come close to the pixel size of point-and-shoots.

If Apple moves Face ID underneath the display, the notch could finally be gone for good. Jon Prosser x RendersByIan

Finally 8K video? — Kuo also says that the larger image sensor will be capable of 8K video. Other rumors he mentioned earlier this year include the addition of a periscope telephoto lens, which would improve optical zoom by a large margin, and an under-display Face ID sensor. Ditching the notch for a hole-punch camera could really set the iPhone 14 Pro apart from the regular iPhone 14.

iPhone 14 rumor mill — Additionally, Pu had new predictions of his own, claiming the iPhone 14 Pro models would receive a bump in RAM from 6GB to 8GB. Other rumored specs include 120Hz displays for all four iPhone 14 models and 64GB base storage for standard iPhone 14 models. However, it’s worth noting that these last two rumors don’t add up. The 120Hz ProMotion displays are a high-end feature, which some believe will not trickle down to all new iPhones. And it does seem improbable that Apple would lower base storage one year after raising it to 128GB on the iPhone 13; it’s just regressive.

With the iPhone 14 not expected until September 2022, there’s no telling who’s right and who’s wrong. But with two analysts independently reporting a 48-megapixel sensor, I like the odds.