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One of the most talked-about iPhone 15 rumors appears to not be happening

Mark Gurman hath declared it, so therefore it musteth be true.

Published onSeptember 8, 2023

Apple iPhone 14 Pro Max camera
Robert Triggs / Android Authority
  • A prominent Apple leaker says the fabled “iPhone 15 Ultra” rebranding won’t happen.
  • Instead, Apple will likely stick to the Pro Max branding for its top-end iPhone.
  • Interestingly, the leaker neglects to use the term “periscope zoom” for the iPhone 15 Pro Max. Maybe that’s not happening, either?

When it comes to Apple-related leaks, few can dispute the accuracy of Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman. Today, Gurman penned a summary article giving all the latest details on what to expect from the “Wonderlust” event Apple will hold on September 12, 2023, at 10:00 AM PT. This event will see the launch of the iPhone 15 series.

In this article, Gurman shoots down one of the most prominent rumors related to the new iPhones: that the iPhone 15 Pro Max would be rebranded as the “iPhone 15 Ultra.” Gurman definitively says that Apple will not do this. Given Gurman’s reliability, we’re inclined to believe him.

We are shocked by this, though, considering how much sense it would make to rebrand the top-end iPhone 15. The Apple Watch Ultra is the top-end Apple Watch, and the M2 Ultra is the top-end Apple silicon. Why not have the iPhone 15 Ultra be the top-end iPhone?

Regardless, if you’re looking forward to the next slate of iPhones, the naming scheme should stay the same this year. For the record, we expect there to be an iPhone 15, a slightly larger version of that in the iPhone 15 Plus, the iPhone 15 Pro, and the larger and more powerful iPhone 15 Pro Max.

No iPhone 15 Ultra, and maybe no periscope zoom?

Interestingly, the word “periscope” does not appear anywhere in Gurman’s piece. He does explain that the iPhone 15 Pro Max will have “an updated telephoto system.” It will be capable of optically zooming as high as 6x. However, his reluctance to use the word “periscope” to describe this system leaves us wondering if maybe the Pro Max model won’t have this technology.

The best Android camera phones — including the Galaxy S23 Ultra and Pixel 7 Pro — have periscope zoom lenses. This technology physically moves a lens to create lossless zoom at various lengths. The advantage here is crisper footage, even if your subject is far away. iPhones have never had this technology, despite Android phones using it successfully for years. If the iPhone 15 Pro Max doesn’t have it — especially with all the rumors saying it will — that would be quite strange.

Of course, this could just be a semantic oversight by Gurman. Either way, we’ll find out everything next week.

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