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Top leaker says Apple’s iPhone 14 will have under-display Touch ID

Published Jun 23rd, 2021 10:25PM EDT
iPhone 14 Max Price
Image: kite_rin/Adobe

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The iPhone 13 has yet to be announced, but we’re already seeing exciting iPhone 14 rumors that should excite fans. The iPhone 13 and iPhone 14 names refer to the unreleased 2021 and 2022 iPhone models, respectively, which might have different commercial names when they launch. The current expectations are that Apple will actually skip 13, calling the 2020 model the iPhone 12s instead, and then moving forward to something else in 2022.

Regardless of what names Apple chooses for its next phones, we already have reasons to be excited about the iPhone 13 and iPhone 14. We think we know what to expect from this year’s new iPhone in terms of design and features, and now we have a brand new research note from Ming-Chi Kuo, who always delivers reliable spoilers about upcoming Apple launches.

The iPhone 13 models will feature the same design as the iPhone 12 series and will come in the same configuration: 5.4-inch iPhone 13 mini, 6.1-inch iPhone 13 and iPhone 13 Pro, and 6.7 iPhone 13 Pro Max. They’ll have a smaller notch than all its predecessors and offer a few key camera upgrades over the iPhone 12 series. The iPhone 13 Pro models will feature 120Hz OLED displays, and all four handsets will pack larger batteries than their predecessors. That’s what all the iPhone 13 rumors say, at least.

Kuo says Apple plans a big shake-up to the iPhone lineup in 2022 when a 6.7-inch model will replace the mini version. The so-called iPhone 14 Max will become the cheapest 6.7-inch iPhone Apple ever made, selling for around $900. Here’s an extract from Kuo’s note via 9to5Mac:

We reiterate our previous key specifications forecast for 2H22 iPhone models, namely that Apple will launch two high-end iPhones (6.1″ and 6.7″) and two low- end iPhones (6.1″ and 6.7″) in 2H22.

We believe the growth drivers for the new 2H22 iPhones will come from 1) the potential for under-display fingerprint support (using Apple’s own technology), 2) the lowest price ever for a large (6.7″) iPhone (we expect it to be under USD 900), and 3) a wide camera upgrade to 48MP for high-end models.

Apple’s iPhone 11 and 12 models have all been surprisingly competitive when it comes to pricing, selling their corresponding Android rivals by wide margins. But even so, the largest iPhone version is usually the most expensive device in Apple’s lineup. A 6.7-inch iPhone selling for under $900 would be a significant achievement for the company. That’s $200 cheaper than the starting price of the iPhone 12 Pro Max.

The iPhone 12 mini might be an exciting proposition on paper, a compact flagship that’s as formidable as the iPhone 12, but the phone hasn’t been selling as well as its siblings. Most buyers might be looking for larger displays, and the 5.4-inch screen might not be enough.

Aside from the size change and price structure, Kuo also lists a few key specs for the iPhone 14 that are also worth getting excited about. The 2022 handsets should deliver under-display fingerprint support, with Apple using its own technology to bring Touch ID back to the iPhone. That’s a feature many people have been pining over ever since Apple replaced Touch ID with Face ID.

Finally, the leaker claims the iPhone 14 Pro models will get a 48-megapixel wide camera upgrade.

Kuo doesn’t say in this note whether Touch ID will join Face ID or replace 3D face recognition. Face ID remains the more sophisticated and more secure alternative to fingerprint sensors. Kuo said in previous reports that 2022 iPhones might ditch the notch in favor of punch-hole display designs like what’s available on Android right now.

Separately, Kuo said a few months ago that the iPhone’s Face ID components will be placed under the screen in the iPhone 15 series set to launch in 2023.

While Kuo has accurately predicted various iPhone moves in the past few years, his track record isn’t perfect. No matter how exciting his iPhone 14 and iPhone 15 claims might be, there are no guarantees Apple will deliver these rumored upgrades and meet those price points.

Chris Smith Senior Writer

Chris Smith has been covering consumer electronics ever since the iPhone revolutionized the industry in 2008. When he’s not writing about the most recent tech news for BGR, he brings his entertainment expertise to Marvel’s Cinematic Universe and other blockbuster franchises.

Outside of work, you’ll catch him streaming almost every new movie and TV show release as soon as it's available.

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