One of the criticisms of Apple is they seem to be selling the same iPhone year after year. The designs are the same! The camera is just 12MP! Even the colors are not much different between this generation and the next.

While on the surface, those people are right to a degree, Apple’s designs are subtle from year to year and many people will notice. However, just like evolution, those small changes over the generations will add up over time. Year to year might see small and subtle changes, but once you compare it to the first, the current iPhone Pro is nearly unrecognizable from the first.

Improvements Since iPhone 11 Pro

Here are some of the improvements introduced since Apple unveiled the “Pro” line of iPhones:

  • USB-C: Yes, the EU has a hand in this, but Apple finally moved from Lighting to USB-C as the primary port.
  • MagSafe: MagSafe was an improvement over the Qi wireless charging standard. It was so good that it became the new Qi 2 wireless charging standard.
  • Action Button: The silent mode switch which was a staple since iPhone 1 has been replaced with the Action Button
  • Dynamic Island: The sensor array that hosts the FaceID sensors, selfie camera, and proximity sensor has been updated to be a part of the UI, no longer something to hide behind
  • Screen: The size yes still says the same, but the technology behind the screen has evolved over generations. Higher brightness values, HDR, and ProMotion are some of the features introduced over time.
  • ProMotion: Yes, Android introduced a higher refresh rate earlier than iPhones, but Apple can vary the refresh rate based on content.
  • Camera Systems: The major change over a generation is the camera system. At a glance, it is just 3 lenses behind the smartphone, but they got bigger, the computation photography got better and the sensor is more sensitive.
  • Night Mode: When low light is detected, it makes the shutter open longer to capture more light. And if it detects it’s on a tripod, the shutter can be as long as 30 seconds. Over time, the sensor is more sensitive and collects more light so the night pictures are getting better to the point of taking astrophotography is possible.
  • Night Mode Portraits: Just like Night Mode, but in Portrait mode it captures depth information and highlights the subject while blurring the background.
  • Macro Photography: Close-up photography to capture the very small like insects, flowers, or the eyeball.
  • ProRAW: Option to store photo sensor data so you have more data to edit with. Unfortunately, it does not capture other metadata like depth and suggested color presets.
  • ProRes: Apple’s propriety video format which collects sensor data from the camera. Apple’s other SOC chips like the M3 and M2 family are optimized for this.
  • Log Recording: An industry standard for managing color data when shooting video. The video will look washed out but gives you the option of having custom color grading instead of what is being processed on the phone.
  • Academy Color Grading: Another industry standard to preserve color info throughout the entire production process. This way, color info remains consistent throughout the entire production process.
  • HDR Videos: Often, when shooting against a bright background, you’ll either have your subject blacked out or your background washed out. With High Dynamic Range (HDR), you can have both the subject and background in perfect exposure.
  • Spatial Videos: Taking 3D videos that can be viewed with the Apple Vision Pro.
  • SOC Improvements: On the iPhone 11 Pro, it was the A13 Bionic chip which was quite advanced for its time. The latest iPhone 15 Pro features a chip that is twice as fast, has graphics three times more powerful, and can solve machine learning problems five times faster. The A17 Pro is powerful enough to play console games right on the phone itself.
  • SOS via Satellite: The latest iPhone can connect you to emergency responders (or roadside assistance in not-so-emergency situations) where there’s not even a cell reception. It does this by contacting satellites above your head.
  • Crash Detection: The latest iPhone can detect you’re in a crash and call emergency responders to your location.
  • Ceramic Glass: Stronger glass in the front to resist impact and scratches.


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iPhonesiPhone 15 / iPhone 15 Plus (Renewed) - (Amazon)iPhone 15 Pro / iPhone 15 Pro Max (Renewed) - (Amazon)
WatchApple Watch SE (Amazon) / Apple Watch Series 9 (Amazon)Apple Watch Ultra 2 (Amazon)
AirPodsAirPods 3 (Amazon)AirPods Pro 2 (Amazon) / AirPods Max (Amazon)
iPadiPad 9 (Amazon) / iPad Mini (Amazon)iPad Air (Amazon) / iPad Pro M2 (Amazon)
LaptopsMacBook Air M3 (Amazon)MacBook Pro M3
DesktopMac Mini (Amazon) / iMac (Amazon)Mac Studio / Mac Pro
DisplaysStudio Display (Amazon)Pro Display XDR (Amazon)

Other Ecosystem Items

Comparison Table

General comparison

iPhoneiPhone 11 ProiPhone 12 ProiPhone 13 ProiPhone 14 ProiPhone 15 Pro
External Stuffs
Weight188 grams189 grams204 grams206 grams187 grams
Charging PortLighting, supports USB-2USB-C supports USB 3
Wireless ChargingQiMagSafe
Action ButtonNoYes
Front Sensor HousingThe NotchDynamic Island
Side bar materialStainless SteelTitanium
Dust/Water ProtectionIP68
Screen Size5.8"6.1"
Resolution (Pixels)2436x11252532x11702556x1179
Max Brightness (Typical)800 nits1000 nits
Max Brightness (HDR)1200 nits1600 nits
Max Brightness (Outdoor)-2000 nits
Color GamutP3
Always-On displayNoYes
Camera System and capabilities
Main Camera12MP, f/1.8, 1/2.55" sensor12MP, f/1.6 1/1.65" sensor12MP, f/1.5 1/1.65" sensor48MP, f/1.78 1/1.28" sensor48MP, f/1.78 1/1.14" sensor
Ultrawide Camera12MP, f/2.412MP, f/2.412MP, f/1.812MP, f/2.212MP, f/2.2
Telephoto Camera12MP, f/2.012MP, f/2.212MP, f/2.812MP, f/2.812MP, f/2.8
Selfie Camera12MP f/2.212MP f/1.9
LiDAR ScannerNoYes
Smart HDR23445
Night ModeYes
Night Mode PortraitsNoYes
Photographic StylesNoYes
Macro PhotographyNoYes
Apple ProRAWNoYes
Apple ProResNoYes
Log RecordingNoYes
Academy Color Encoding SystemNoYes
HDR VideosNoYes
Spatial VideosNoYes
System-on-Chip Processor
NameA13 BionicA14 BionicA15 BionicA16 BionicA17 Pro
CPU cores6
Graphic cores456
Neural cores816
Photonic EngineNoYes
USB-3 EngineNoYes
Cell Support4G5G
WiFi Support66E
Bluetooth Support5.05.3
UWB SupportYes2nd Generation
Emergency SOSYes
Emergency SOS via satelliteNoYes
Crash DetectionNoYes
Roadside Assistance via satelliteNoYes

Pro Max Bodies Compared

For most features, the Pro Max has the same capabilities as the Pro bodies, but I’ll highlight where the differences are

iPhoneiPhone 11 ProiPhone 12 ProiPhone 13 ProiPhone 14 ProiPhone 15 Pro
External Stuffs
Weight226 g228 g240 g240 g221 g
Screen Size6.5"6.7"
Resolutions (Pixels)2668x12422778x12842796x1290
Camera System and capabilities
Main Camera12MP, f/1.812MP, f/1.612MP, f/1.548MP, f/1.7848MP, f/1.78
Telephoto Camera12MP, f/2.012MP, f/2.212MP, f/2.812MP, f/2.812MP, f/2.8